Statement in support of MPA Framework review

Statement in support of MPA Framework review

Published Friday 19 October 2018

Art and artistic choices should provoke conversation and challenge traditional thinking and ideas. Liking or disliking a work is an audience’s prerogative. Making theatre to avoid confrontation or criticism is not what theatre companies should strive for. Art is inherently risky. As it should be.

Arts funding in Australia is an important topic that deserves continued analysis and consideration from a broad range of perspectives. Bell Shakespeare welcomes the current review of the MPA Framework and looks forward to the consultation process.

A sophisticated, healthy and well-funded arts ecosystem should include the work of individual artists and companies so that it can satisfy the many tastes of different audiences. We carefully review our programming to ensure we are still producing work which is embraced by our audiences.

We are very appreciative of the funding we receive from both the NSW and Australian governments through the MPA Framework; an annual amount of $1.46 million representing approximately 14.7% of the Company’s turnover.

This, our core funding, supports our annual program of activity and our NSW reach. We generate a further $4.3 million through audience income and $2.9 million in private and corporate support each year to deliver our program. This, in combination, supports the direct employment of nearly 200 people annually in a range of artistic, creative, administrative and educational roles.

Our remit is to make our work available to audiences across Australia. We are not city centric – our production and education teams travel an average of 680,000 kms every year and play to an annual audience of almost 150,000, reaching 89% of Australian electorates.

We have a long-demonstrated commitment to reaching regional and remotely located Australians – a commitment we take great pride in. Touring productions of scale in a country this vast is a considerable undertaking. We apply annually for Playing Australia funds which defray some of our considerable touring costs.

The value we bring is significant – in theatres, for students, for teachers, for communities.


Peter Evans Gill Perkins
Artistic Director Executive Director



Statement in support of MPA Framework review