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Friday, November 1, 2013

Dumfries Shortlisted for Creative Place Award

The region continued its proud history of recognition for its creative places by Creative Scotland and Visit Scotland with todays announcement that Dumfries is down to the final three for the biggest award category (towns over 10,000 people). Dumfropolis now goes head to head with Falkirk and Orkney for the big prize - to be announced at the end of January.

Commiserations to Moffat though who have just missed out on shortlisting for their category.

Two years ago Wigtown won their category and Creetown won a special award, last year Glenkens and Gatehouse-of-Fleet were both shortlisted.

The Dumfries bid was led by a partnership of three organisations (The Stove, Big Burns Supper and Electric Theatre Workshop). The bid included plans to support different arts organisations to contribute to each others programming next year and the next stage of the judging process will see the inclusion of other local arts groups and venues in the bid process.

Below is the media release issued last night by BBS, Stove and ETW:

United artists approach makes shortlist for National Award
Several organisations were jumping for joy at the news in Dumfries today – that the town has been shortlisted for the coveted Creative Place Award for 2014.
A joint bid was led by Big Burns Supper, The Stove and Electric Theatre Workshop to attract investment of £150,000 to the town to support the development of a Creative Place through a year-long celebration of Creativity to help support Dumfries town centre.
Uniquely – the bid has been developed by the arts organisations independently, which mirrors the trend that has been happening in Dumfries over the last three years.   Artists and their Organisations are leading the way in the regeneration of place, community and identity.
Take Pride - The Stove preparing for this years inaugural Nithraid

Graham Main, Artistic Director of Electric Theatre Workshop & Big Burns Supper said,
“We are thrilled with the news of the shortlist - which celebrates the ground breaking transformation, and creative leadership model in our community. Organisation’s like Big Burns Supper, The Stove and Electric Theatre Workshop - and our many associate organisations like Theatre Royal, Peter Pan Moatbrae, Greyfriars Concerts, DG Arts Festival and The Crichton Campus are leading on a fresh approach to arts delivery, and redefining the rules to creative participation through a new confidence that is spreading throughout our region.”

Matt Baker, Founding member, the Stove Artists Collective, said
“Culture and Heritage have been identified by many as the key to revitalising Dumfries – a future built on assets like the river, the history and the creative talents of our citizens. Much work has been done already by groups like Stove, Big Burns Supper and Electric Theatre Workshop – we have all focussed on making opportunities for other local folk to get involved and through this building a network of amazing people with a ‘can do’ attitude.
Being shortlisted for this award is amazing national recognition of both the work done to date and potential for the future. Dumfries is ready to claim itself Queen of the South again for the new century – we look forward to working with everyone to make that happen.”
Opening scenes from BBS' We Can Be Heroes performance earlier this year
It comes on the same day that Big Burns Supper announced plans for their Homecoming Carnival which will set the town alight on the 25th January 2014 which will see over 2000 people taking part in the organisations largest ever Participation project to date.
A massive community celebration which help pay tribute to the centenary of World War One, with second year students from several high schools helping to design and create the first ever Burns Night Carnival in the town’s history.
As the news came in, Final preparations were being made to the Dumfries Music Conference weekend which is taking place at The Stove in the centre of Dumfries.  The second Dumfries Music Conference (#DMC2013) will pick up where Greg Wilson signed off last year, with a programme centred on sharing knowledge, ideas and thoughts about music.
Their aim is to be progressive, which is why this year’s sessions have a different complexion than last year’s. Where 2012’s focus was electronic music and technology, 2013 is about shining a light on the music industry’s storytellers.
As part of their continued development, Electric Theatre Workshop have announced continued expansion into communities throughout Dumfries, supporting communities and schools to get access to creativity.
The Community Interest Company based in the centre of Dumfries has opened Youth Theatre projects at Lochside Primary, Lincluden Primary, St Teresa’s Primary and St Ninian’s Primary Schools throughout the next year. 

Dumfries will find out at an Awards Ceremony in January 2014 which town will lift the prize.

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