The population of Birmingham has a significantly higher percentage of South Asian residents as well as a higher African Caribbean population. This report summarises how Birmingham Arts Marketing’s audience development project demonstrated to The Rep, one of the arts venues involved, the importance of talking and listening and being ready to make changes.
Interestingly, the key achievements overall are internal to the organisations involved, in that an attitudinal shift is taking place. There is training for all involved, leading to organisational change – particularly in the culture of the organisations. BAM has ended up pursuing a very different goal than originally envisaged, having concluded that audience development only happens when real organisational change takes place. For audience development activity to succeed, the conditions need to be right.