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Social Fund Performing Arts turns out to be moneypit: assets halved in five years. Why is this bad news?

'If we continue at the current rate, the fund will be exhausted in the foreseeable future.' This can be read in the 2018 annual report of the Performing Arts Social Fund. Plenty of reason to sound the alarm, indeed. Is this yet another victim of the cabinet's cuts? Not really, it turns out. When you look at the documents in detail, you see mainly that... 

Theatre boards want more money for 'difficult' offerings.

More operas and classical concerts are offered in Dutch theatres and concert halls. More theatre was also offered for young people. Nice developments, but the increase in supply (3 per cent) did not directly lead to a proportionate increase in audiences. That increased by only 1 per cent. The number of spectators for theatre and cabaret even fell. Therefore. 

Also for Supervisory Board: many ancillary positions not necessarily an advantage

The commotion about Beatrix Ruf's side job, or rather just second job, touches on a number of important core values for the proper functioning of society in general and the cultural sector in particular. Firstly, that cooperation is based on trust. The Supervisory Board was justified in assuming that Ruf would not run a consultancy company alongside her... 

Museum Association juggles numbers. (Why all our museums are doing great)

Museums in the Netherlands are doing well. Today, the Museum Association released a kind of annual report in which this was made abundantly clear in tables and graphs. Visits are increasing. Between 2015 and 2016, the sector counted 2.5 million more visits. Mainly by foreign tourists. At the same time, more and more museums are running at a loss. According to the Museum Association, that negative balance now hits for... 

Dramatic increase in volunteering in theatres and concert halls.

One of the highlights of the year is always the presentation of 'the figures' by the Association of Theatre and Concert Hall Directors (VSCD). As it happens, these are unabatedly positive. For years. And so for years it has been a challenge to find out why those positive figures are so difficult to reconcile with the picture of reality. That not at all... 

What's behind Wim Pijbes' directed departure from the Rijks?

For now, an unusual state of affairs in the field of cultural governance. Unsatisfactory also because of the many questions it raises: Wim Pijbes rather unexpectedly announces his departure as chief director of the Rijksmuseum on 1 March 2016, opting for a director's position at a new private museum (Voorlinden) owned by billionaire Van Caldenborgh on 1 July 2016. Equally unexpectedly,... 

AFK - Amsterdam Fund for the Arts

Amsterdam Fund for the Arts (AFK) seeks Supervisory Board member

Amsterdam Fund for the Arts (AFK) seeks a member for the Supervisory Board from 1-1-2017 The AFK invests in art that enriches life in the city. The AFK provides subsidies to artists and cultural organisations, drives innovation and stimulates the quality, dynamism and pluriformity of Amsterdam art. The AFK supports both experimentation and proven quality,... 

Figures don't lie: Dutch venues are doing badly

It must have been down to my indestructible mood, and the deep need to finally deliver some good news about the cultural sector, but I was so wrong. Tuesday I reported that the performing arts were recovering after Halbe Zijlstra's draconian cuts, but that is so not the case. As much as the sector itself would like it to do well, the figures contradict it time and again.

Surely the Association of Theatre and Concert Hall Directors has taken us all for a ride again. With a real infographic still do. But, as it goes with infographics: you can put in all the bright colours and shouts, and even shout 'Bravo!' and 'Applause!'at the bottom, the numbers themselves don't lie, even if you present them slightly differently than last year.

Theatres are doing better and better: 6 lessons from the VSCD @congresPK

On Monday 23 and Tuesday 24 May, the VSCD met, and the Congres Podiumkunsten (@congresPK) was going on at the Nijmegen Concert Hall De Vereeniging. I went to check it out and discovered some new things.
1 The eminent gentlemen are gone.
Things have changed in Dutch theatre since the beginning of this century. Sometime around the year 2000, I was a guest at a meeting of the Association of Theatre and Concert Hall Directors, and it was a bizarre experience. I found myself among a...

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The figures are in. And they don't say anything at all.

We had already announced it. This period is all about positive framing by the arts sector. Good news has to be spread, although people don't really know why. After all, there are no shareholders to be kept happy, only concerned art lovers. Enfin. On Wednesday 9 September, NRC journalist Daan van Lent presented the result of an investigation into the... 

Disaster at Grand Theatre mainly due to supervision failure

We took another close look at the news surrounding the near bankruptcy of Groningen's illustrious Grand Theatre. Yesterday, it became clear that that theatre is in serious financial trouble. Problems that the municipality does not want to solve simply by an extra injection of thousands of euros. And they are right. After all, the Grand's coffers are as leaky as a... 

Grand Theatre Groningen

Grand Theatre 'not too big to fail': bankruptcy looms for Groningen hotspot

The Grand Theatre in Groningen is dying. Yesterday, the city council of the northern university city decided that no more money should be poured into the theatre, which is in acute cash trouble. Bills from suppliers and independent artists have not been paid for several months, and financial reserves are more than depleted. We have received reports from artists... 

Sports sponsor pays top price, culture sponsor sits front row for a pittance and expects no less

The smallest opera company in the Netherlands beats the biggest. Not in visitor numbers, not in subsidy received, but in bringing in sponsorship money. On closer inspection, however, it becomes painfully clear once again that there is no giving culture in the Netherlands and sponsorship is limited to a pittance. A rattling giving law will not change that.

A month ago, intendant Guus Mostart told us that despite rave reviews and sold-out theatres, the N...

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