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Aa-ah. Falling behind in June content already. Just dropping by quickly to nudge you in the direction of something that Andy Field and I have been scheming (on, about? Never used the word ‘scheming’ before). A return of the Flash Conference we sprang at State of the Arts earlier on this year. Now much bigger! Much longer! And with creative as well as thinky inputs!

Basically it will be hosted by Forest Fringe in Edinburgh, on the 21st of August. We have been gathering questions, speakers, performances, and innovative-ish ideas for holding different level of dialogue, and will bring them all together in a cornucopia of discussion of the ideas of performance, what it means to be ‘fringe’, the state of the world, and how the arts thread through that. And as ever, we’ll be posting audio of all the provocations, will hopefully have livebloggers, and will definitely try our damndest to replicate the conversation online, and feed everything both ways across the virtual/real membrane. Ticket will work on a pay-what-you-can model, and we’ll even do lunch. Hold the date, eventbrite will be out soon.


This day is not about railing against authority or the great institutions of the arts. It is a day for everybody to gather at the edges of those big institutions and organisations, on equal terms. To ask daring questions and suggest implausible answers. To share a spirit of generosity and a galvanising sense of hope; that despite or perhaps because of the political, financial and environmental circumstances in which we find ourselves, the arts can and will play a part in imagining and realising a better possible future.

We’re still looking for partners to help support the event, so if you’d like to help (in exchange for your logo on every available surface) do drop us a line. And if you can offer your time over the event to help live blog/document the conversations, or if you have a pro-camera (something along the lines of a Cannon 550D) you could lend/come up and use, please DO let me/us know.

Finally, today is the last day to get a question in for the voting next week. 2 of the 4 questions that will frame the whole event are going to be from submissions. So PLEASE do submit. Everyone has their bugbear, wondering, pet peeve, or great ambition for performance, and the questions will be anonymous, so you can be as controversial as you like. Even if you can’t quite form a question, please just send us some thoughts and we’ll shape it into something that could provoke a discussion…

Think that’s that. I’ll be back later this month posting various talks that I’m giving places. Hopefully interesting ones. The TEDxYork stuff should be at least. I actually checked out the site the other day and was bowled over by who else is speaking. Feels very odd to be on the same platform as people like Bill Thompson, Daniel Bye, and Tassos Stevens. I like the theme, too; A New STEAM age. STEM plus ‘A’ for arts. GEDDIT?! Yeah.

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