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Regional Arts Development Central West NSW
rural arts and culture symposiums
Valuable and passionate conversations about how and why we make arts and culture happen in our region.

The day was split into three panel discussions, two sessions of 20×20 project presentations and an informal afternoon discussion.

2014 Rural Arts Symposium

The inaugural Rural Arts and Culture Symposium (Saturday November 15 in Forbes) started some valuable and passionate conversations about how and why we make arts and culture happen in our region.

In this recap: Quotes, discussion points, video, links and photos, audio of the panel sessions from the day.

  • ‘Visitors don’t see ‘local government areas” Brian Steffan, General Manager, Forbes Shire council
  • The Symposium asked: how does arts and culture strengthen our regional communities? There was a deliberate focus on festivals, cultural tourism and the creative industries.
  • Co-hosted by Kalari-Lachlan River Arts FestivalForbes Shire Counciland Arts OutWest, the day drew people from across the Central West – Bathurst to Wellington to Grenfell, Parkes, Canowindra, Forbes – as well as guest speakers from the likes of Central NSW Tourism, Musicaviva, Mitchell Conservatroium, Bathurst Memorial Entertainment Centre, local councils and a huge range of the region’s festivals.
  • ‘Wiradjuri culture belongs to all of us’ Larry Towney.
  • Richard Morgan, Forbes Council: councils should lead community events from behind – hand over to collaboration.
  • Lucy White, Central NSW Tourism: use audience surveys. ‘Throw the data at them’.
  • Buzz words on the day included collaboration, strengths, visitor experience, the value of volunteers, the richness of Wiradjuri culture, connections, collective marketing and a regional (rather than just local) focus.
Panel 1: tourism & regional arts and culture.

LISTEN: Audio from this session (55mins) (listen on Soundcloud) (free)

‘Our destination management plan has identified that this region [NSW Central West] is the richest cultural heritage part of NSW’ – Lucy White, CEO Central NSW Tourism

A definition of ‘Cultural Tourism’ [via Lucy White]: Attending one or more of: festivals or fairs; performing arts or concerts; museums and galleries; historical or heritage buildings, site or monuments; art or craft workshops or studios; Aboriginal sites; arts and cultural displays.

 Some Cultural Tourism statistics for the NSW Central West [via Lucy White, as at 2014]:

  • Central NSW Tourism’s cultural heritage register lists 1130 significant sites
  • Overnight cultural heritage visitors spend $1030 per trip in regional NSW, compared to $578 spent by general ‘other’ visitors.
Panel 2: how does culture contribute to community?
 Panel 3: Who do we do it for? Understanding your market and your motivations
  • Facilitator: Graham Satler, Executive Director Mitchell Conservatorium of Music
  • Margot Jolly, Chair Kalari Lachlan River Arts Festival and museums consultant
  • Larry Towney, Lachlan Lands Services and local Aboriginal community
  • Kylie Shead, Creative Producer Local Stages at Bathurst Memorial Entertainment Centre
  • Shellie Buckle, Parkes Shire Council
20×20 presentations: great regional projects

Each presenter had 20 slides, shown for 20 seconds each, to tell their story. Presenters were:

  • Facilitator: Tracey Callinan, Arts OutWest
  • Vince Lovecchio, Orange Youth Arts Festival
  • Stephen Champion, Bathurst Memorial Entertainment Centre
  • Ro Burns, Kalari Lachlan River Arts Festival
  • Christine McMillan, Cementa Festival
  • Kim Festherstone, Van Fest
  • Richard Morgan, Forbes Shire Council
  • Kylie Shead, Central West Short Play Festival (Bathurst Memorial Entertainment Centre)
  • Alyssa Coursey, Trundle ABBA Festival
  • Phoebe Cowdery, The Corridor Project
  • Bob Craven, Taste Canowindra

WIN News covered the story (watch below)

2015 Symposium

 Friday 30 October 2015 in Forbes. A half-day symposium exploring how cultural events can strengthen regional communities through improved engagementmanagement and marketing. All welcome.

Valuable and passionate conversations about how and why we make arts and culture happen in our region.

Location: Forbes

When: 2014, 2015

Partnering with: Kalari Lachlan River Arts Festival, Forbes Shire Council

Phot credits: Arts OutWest. Images from the 2014 event.