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Leicester’s Creative Young Talent get Helping Hand


In celebration of its second year providing opportunities for young entrepreneurs, Curve has presented a series of exciting performances by its rising stars.


Today saw the showcase of the Young Arts Entrepreneurs (YAE) Curve theatres’ community focused scheme, which aims to help local artists aged 16-25 launch their own social and creative enterprises.


Starting in 2012 eleven projects have been assisted by the scheme, ranging from poetry to drama; dance to music. Focusing on promoting art as a device to improve confidence and self-esteem, the scheme has seen its entrepreneurs work with those who have special educational needs, ex-offenders and disadvantaged youths.


The YAEs took over the theatre today to show Leicester the innovative performances they’ve been busy creating. With a musical showcase from emerging singer-songwriter Mark Elliot to Jess Green’s poetry reading streamed live from her current Edinburgh Fringe Festival performance, the day included a series of workshops and presentations, undoubtedly promoting the talented performers.


YAE has enjoyed a successful two years in nurturing local upcoming talent and is looking towards extending the current scheme to arts organisations across the United Kingdom. Curve’s Associate Director for Participation and Learning, Tim Ford, who also co-ordinates the project said: “Supporting and developing new local artists is integral to the work we do at Curve, and as we move towards the final year of YAE, we are keen to extend the model, developing a legacy for the project which will continue to benefit Leicestershire’s young artists and communities, whilst also creating opportunities for arts organisations across the country.”


As well as honing in on new creative talent, the YAE provides business support and advice for the entrepreneurs standing them in good stead in becoming the next generation of arts industry moguls. The artists are given practical business training, as well as lessons in management, finance and problem solving. Head of Business Development at Curve, Hannah Hallam spoke of the scheme’s mentoring aspect where a business professional is on hand to advise the entrepreneurs, saying: “It really helps having people who have gone through that process helping those starting out on that journey.”


With a wealth of artistic talent across Leicester the scheme has provided not only opportunities for youngsters to start their own businesses, but to provide a valuable service to the community at large, Tim continued: “This year’s YAEs have not only produced projects of outstanding artistic quality but also demonstrated maturity and dedication both in their approach to developing business skills and in ensuring that the work has been of real value to the communities involved.




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