Arts8 – Nurturing Australia’s Creative Soul – Evan Lawson - 28.02.24

Arts8 – Nurturing Australia’s Creative Soul

By Evan Lawson, Senior Marketing Coordinator at the Australian National Academy of Music

Originally printed in the Australian Academy of Music’s (ANAM’s) quarterly paper Music Makers Vol. 50 February 2024

In the heart of Australia’s cultural landscape, eight venerable institutions stand as the backbone of the nation’s creative future. Collectively known as Arts8, these training organisations have been shaping the artistic landscape for an impressive 372 years. As we step into 2024, it’s time to unveil the monumental impact and extraordinary contributions of Arts8 to Australia’s performing and screen arts industries.

Comprising the Australian Ballet School, Australian Film, Television and Radio School (AFTRS), Australian National Academy of Music (ANAM), Australian Youth Orchestra (AYO), Flying Fruit Fly Circus, NAISDA, National Institute of Circus Arts (NICA), and National Institute of Dramatic Art (NIDA), Arts8 stands as a united force, fortifying the nation’s creative endeavours.

In the past year alone, Arts8 has offered an impressive array of 30 accredited and 126 non-accredited intense, studio-based training programs. Employing over 1,000 arts workers, including dedicated artists and trainers, Arts8 has been instrumental in fostering the growth and development of talent across various artistic disciplines.

Arts8 doesn’t just thrive within studio walls; it reaches out to communities across the nation. Offering an astounding 471 community programs, Arts8 has touched the lives of over 52,000 community members. Additionally, the group presented 728 performances and screenings in metropolitan centres, captivating more than 145,000 spectators. In regional centres, Arts8 continued its cultural outreach with 91 performances, engaging over 23,000 audience members.

Financially contributing $48.1 million to Australia’s cultural economy, Arts8 is not just an artistic force but an economic one, supporting the broader cultural ecosystem.

The impact of Arts8 extends far beyond training programs and performances. With a commitment to nurturing talent, Arts8 has trained a total of 1,694 artists and arts workers. Impressively, 96% of these participants successfully completed their programs, with 673 graduates transitioning into professional employment or pursuing further national and international training.

This exceptional success rate is a testament to the quality and effectiveness of the training provided by Arts8 institutions. The graduates are not only enhancing Australia’s artistic scene but are making a mark on the global stage.

Arts8 is not just a group of training organisations; it is a collective vision for securing Australia’s creative future. With support from the Commonwealth Government, Arts8 is steadfast in its mission to nurture, empower, and amplify the voices of artists and arts workers across the nation.

As we celebrate the rich tapestry woven by Arts8, it’s evident that the fruits of their labour can be experienced in the performances, screens, concert halls, and circus spaces from coast to coast. The story told by these eight internationally-renowned organisations is not just about artistic excellence; it’s about preserving and enriching Australia’s cultural legacy for generations to come.

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