Imagining a happier 2021 is not difficult, but how can you personally best make an impact on the mental health of the nation?
Out to Perform is here to do just that – by transforming the UK's performing arts narrative from despair to opportunity – through our mission of turbo-charging the outdoor performing economy in 2021. As a result of our work, we want more performances, more artistes to earn through their skills, and more people to experience the uplift of live performance.
With social distancing unlikely to end until later in 2021, expanding outdoor performance opportunities – where the air is Covid-safer – is the only way to allow more people to experience the thrill of live performance. With the established arts sector predicted to take many years to recover from the pandemic, our work will be vital in helping musicians, actors and other performers to earn from their skills.
We’re not a regular arts organisation that is begging for money. Out to Perform is a time-limited philanthropic project aiming to unlock others’ ability to create more outdoor performance opportunities – and change the national mood by turning the outdoors into a palace of entertainment, from our High Streets, to unusual public spaces and festivals.
We are built as a venture-paced start-up, with a mission to unlock artistes’ ability to use their skills to entertain the public – and unleash the restorative power to the nation that the performing arts brings that’s needed now more than ever.
How will we do it?
We’re the synergy of 3 things that might sound unglamorous – but it’s the backdoor work that unlocks opportunity for performers and the public alike:
• Lobbying government for cutting red tape that unintentionally prevent performances being produced and other strategic interventions, powered by a Think Tank of the best lateral-thinking minds to think around problems. It may not sound a very glamorous use of your money, but that’s what unlocks opportunity for the performing arts.
• Partnering landholders with the performing arts to create synergy: artistes artistes earning from their skills in a way that attracts people back into the High Streets, shopping centres and public spaces that we need as part of the economic recovery. We want to make our High Streets palaces of entertainment and raise the value of the performing arts.
• Advising the sector from street performers through to pop-up venues and festivals on the opportunities being created. From online guides for the entire sector, to sharing best practice. Advice on opportunities for what you can, as opposed to can’t, do means we have a golden opportunity to help an entrepreneurial generation of artistes and producers to “make stuff happen”.
We have a track record of success
Out to Perform is an ace team combining entrepreneurship, thought leadership, experienced public affairs lobbying and effective PR, that has just demonstrated how it can change the national narrative with the success of our launch campaign, Save Carol Singing. Last month we realised outdoor carol singing was in danger of not happening this year due to Covid regulations, with no other national body able to fight for it, so we went all out to save it by:
1. commissioning an opinion poll, producing the first published data on the importance of carol singing
2. writing an Open Letter to the government with recommendations on how not just to make safe carol singing legal, but arguing it would be a win-win for the government to create a positive narrative by supporting it
3. recruiting 20 figures representing the spirit of our nation and our performing arts inc. Lesley Garrett, Julian Lloyd Webber and Imelda Staunton to co-sign the letter to amplify its media presence
4. mounting a national PR campaign to highlight the letter, gaining us 22 TV and radio interviews and articles across the press
5. persuading MPs and influential Westminster figures to lobby the government and the PM personally to make the change.
The result? The government decided not just to accept all our recommendations , but the PM himself led the messaging to say that making sure carol singing happens is vital. With the amount of outdoor carol events now being hastily planned across England, it means millions of people across the country will be able to sing for the first time since March. (Due to Coronavirus restrictions being a devolved matter in Wales/Scotland/NI, we only had the resources to focus on Westminster.)
We now want to be able to change the national narrative further by putting the outdoor performing arts at the heart of this nation’s renaissance in 2021, benefitting the mental health of everyone. With your financial help, we can do that.
How much do we need to unlock opportunity for others?
We’re seeking £5,000 to fund us for the first 2 months, split as follows:
Lobbying: £2,000 (Think Tank round tables, research, policy development, public affairs, advocacy, campaigning, PR)
Partnering: £1,500 (research, outreach, brokering, curating and administration)
Advising: £1,500 (marketing, communications, creating web resources and online community management)
What is Out To Perform’s structure
As a time-limited philanthropic project, we are not initially setting up as a charity due to the need to move quicker than that would allow. Instead, we’re operating as a not-for-profit project, with social entrepreneur and musician Stuart Barr as CEO and Kate Jones as Head of Partnerships, under the Chairmanship of Sir Andrew Parmley, former Lord Mayor of London. To amplify our message, we’ve recruited Lesley Garrett, Julian Lloyd-Webber, Rt Rev. Rowan Williams and Aled Jones as our Ambassadors, with more in the pipeline. Now, all we need are the resources to be able to deliver the next phase. With your help, we can do just that!
What will you receive in return?
We may not send you a picture of a donkey or a cute rescued animal! What you will get instead is the knowledge that your investment means that more performances will happen, more artistes will be able to earn from their skills, and that more people will be able to experience the uplift of live performance in 2021. They won’t be able to thank you, they almost certainly won’t be aware that it was you and Out To Perform that helped unlocked events. But when the personal annals of the pandemic are written, you’ll have the smile that knows your investment in Out To Perform meant that you played a part in uplifting the nation and helping artistes nationwide to earn from their skills.
Please donate today to kick start our campaign to change the national performing arts narrative in 2021.
Founder/CEO Out To Perform
If you would like to ask questions about our plans, please contact us via the website messenger, and we'll call you!