Welcome to Developing Artists/Art for Rural Touring (DART)



DART (Developing Artists and Art for Rural Touring) is a Live & Local initiative which began in 2013 thanks to funding from Worcestershire County Council.

Since launching, DART has supported nearly 50 artists/companies with mentoring, bursaries, and connections to audiences/promoters. The initiative has also supported the creation of new and exciting work for rural/community touring audiences and has brought promoters and audiences closer to the creation of this work.

DART is now an ongoing programme of support for performing artists based in or working within the East and West Midlands, curated by Live & Local.

DART supports:

  • the creative and organisational development of emerging and existing performing artists who seek to make performances for rural touring;
  • interaction and mutual understanding between performing artists and rural promoters and audiences;
  • the development of high quality, innovative and diverse performance in rural touring;
  • Live & Local’s artistic and equalities policies.
  • Arts Council England’s Creative Case for Diversity

Through DART we aim to support performing artists to make work that is suited to rural touring. We can help artists to do this by meeting, talking and sharing our experience with them; providing artists with tickets to Live & Local performances and inviting them to promoter meetings; attending artists’ performances (or work-in-progress performances) and providing feedback. When we meet artists who are actively seeking to move into rural touring and have the potential to make work that meets the needs of rural touring, we can support them with connections with rural promoter groups/audiences, for rehearsed readings and work-in-progress opportunities. We can also offer bursaries to such artists to attend the annual National Rural Touring Forum conference.

Please click on OPPORTUNITIES FOR ARTISTS or OPPORTUNITIES FOR PROMOTERS & AUDIENCES to find out how you can benefit from this programme.

Through DART we also aim to spread the word about rural touring to performing artists-in-training (within Higher Education settings) and to performing artists’ networks, through presentations at universities, colleges or artists’ network meetings. Please get in touch if you have a course or network that would benefit from this.


Shindig and Lilo








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