East Midlands Caribbean Carnival Arts Network (EMCCAN) received news today that Arts Council England is supporting their bid to take the very best of the regions Carnival Arts on tour across the country.
The two year touring programme ‘Taking Flight’ is the second phase of the organisations ‘Flight of Fantasy’ tour which debuted in 2016. The successful pilot project saw hundreds of artists and young people representing Derby, Leicester, Nottingham and Northampton Caribbean Carnivals travel the length and breadth of the country to share their Caribbean carnival skills and performances.
Now, with the support of Arts Council England’s Strategic Touring fund of £221,960 and funding from tour partners, EMCCAN is able to build on the work of ‘Flight of Fantasy’ by taking Caribbean carnival arts to new audiences, creating real opportunities for artists and young people in the region, and spreading the joy of carnival even further.
Peter Knott, Area Director, Midlands, Arts Council England said:
“One of our ambitions is to see our Strategic Touring fund giving people the opportunity to take part in great artistic and cultural experiences they might not have had the chance to see before, which is why we’re supporting EMCCAN’s latest tour. It will be brilliant to see people right across England enjoying the best Caribbean Carnival arts the East Midlands has to offer.”
Since 2011, EMCCAN has been supporting the region’s Caribbean carnivals in Derby, Leicester, Nottingham and Northampton. As a community interest company they work to support each carnival and their local community as well as enhancing the carnival’s development both in delivery and artistic production. In recent years EMCCAN has grown and now, as well as supporting the regions Caribbean carnivals, delivers a carnival education programme, a regional publication, and produces a number of events including an annual queen show and bi-annual national carnival conference. Touring is the latest string to the organisations bow and has proved an excellent way to promote the region and celebrate the talent that exists within each of the four cities.
Chair of EMCCAN, George Mighty MBE commented on the news saying:
“This is fantastic news for EMCCAN and our partner carnivals in Derby, Leicester, Nottingham and Northampton. The tour is a result of the four Caribbean carnivals working together and shows a real development in this regional partnership and the wider carnival sector. Building on the foundations of Flight of Fantasy 2016, the next two years will allow us to forge new links, share our arts with new audiences and pioneer exciting new initiatives.”
Chief Executive of EMCCAN, Donna Fox also commented on the news:
“Flight of Fantasy: Taking Flight is a great opportunity for regional carnival artists, troupes, volunteers and organisers alike to showcase their talent across the UK. As an organisation, touring allows us to raise the profile of high quality Caribbean carnival arts on a wider scale as well as offering sustainability to the regional carnival sector.”
This year’s programme of touring events will commence in May 2017 with carnival workshops in Scunthorpe and a number of carnival artists from the region opening the largest female cycling event in the UK; Women V Cancer Ride the Night at the Royal Windsor Racecourse. The tour will then go on to various cities, seaside towns and rural areas across the country including; Liverpool, Scunthorpe, Blackpool, and Derbyshire’s Swadlincote to name just a few.