Professionals & Artist Development

FAQs & Criteria

  • What sort of dance are we looking for?
    We are keen for the project and the shows presented to be inspirational. We would welcome applications that cover a range of approaches to contemporary performance in relation to content, technical or staging considerations.

    It should be suitable for a range of ages and communicate its ideas clearly with people who might not often have the opportunity to experience dance. We are interested in shows which really bring a community together and offer them a ‘good night out’.

    We are looking for work interested in engaging with audiences in different ways. A way of doing this might be in the form of workshops and wraparound activity to augment a performance.

  • What length/duration should shows be?
    We are looking for shows which are no less than 60 minutes in length and also include wraparound activity as an addition. Most village hall touring shows are required to provide a full evening of entertainment and always include wraparound activity as part of the evening. If you are applying with a show that is 60 minutes in duration or just under, we will also need an indication of further wraparound activity you will provide in order to occupy a full evening programme.
  • Can I apply with a double bill, which would make a full evening of activity?
    Yes, you can. Though you should consider the cost implication and also the practicalities of providing two shorter shows. Your get in time and also the fees would need to be the same as with touring one full length show.
  • Can I apply with a show for children?
    Yes. It is a priority for the project to increase the number of shows touring rurally for children and families.
  • What do you mean by ‘suitable for rural touring’?
    Rural audiences and venues are diverse, and there is no ‘one size fits all’. However, there are some guidelines you should bear in mind:
  1. The majority of venues you will visit are not fully equipped theatres. Lighting and sound equipment is often very limited, and many companies tour their own lights. It is advisable to plan for touring your own technical kit. Most venues will not have sprung floors, or dance floors. It is unlikely you will have technical support at each venue/village hall.
  2. Your show should be adaptable to different stage sizes and layouts. The majority of performance spaces are 5mx5m, though this varies. Due to the size of most village halls, it is likely you will be physically close to the audience. You can stipulate a bigger area but this will reduce the amount of potential bookings.
  3. You should be acutely aware of sightlines. Most village halls do not have raked seating and therefore an audience cannot see pieces which contain a lot of floor work.  
  4. Promoters usually expect an interval during the evening. This is something to bear in mind.
  5. You should consider your touring costs.  Through this project, companies will receive a fee per performance of between £850 - £1400 including VAT. This fee should include any wraparound activity you might offer that is included in the performance on the day/night. Rural touring venues typically offer food and local accommodation i.e. rooms in people’s houses for company members. This is not compulsory but most companies find it one of the most rewarding parts of rural touring. You can of course organise and pay for your own accommodation.  Most companies who tour rurally usually have no more than 4 people on the road to keep costs down for promoters.
  6. You should consider your get-in time. Lengthy get in times are costly for promoters who hire spaces by the hour. We would recommend a get in of no longer than 4 hours.
  7. Most stages will not be big enough to perform on and most seating will not be raked. Creative solutions to staging are important.
  8. Flexibility is key. Your show should be robust and adaptable to different spaces.
  9. Please be aware that the majority of venues will not be accessible by public transport
  • What do you mean by ‘suitable for rural touring, with some adaptations’?
    You should be confident that your show could fit the criteria outlined above, but with some adaptations. For example, your show might have 5 dancers at present, but you think you could remake it for 3 dancers. Or, you have a complex set, but you think you could reduce it.
  • What do you mean by ‘tour ready’?
    Your show should be made, and/or have been touring in autumn 2019 or before. If you have a show in creation which is close to being finished and premiered, please include as much information about the show in the application form, along with detailed film footage of the show in its entirety. Pieces that are clearly in research and development or early stages will not be considered.  On the application form, there is the opportunity for you to list performance dates if you have any public performances of your show this year and also next year.
  • What do you mean by ‘wraparound activity’?
    Rural Touring audiences expect to come out for a full evening i.e. minimum of 90 mins performance plus an interval. As dance performances tend to be shorter we are encouraging companies to think of appropriate and creative wraparound activities to elongate an evening. It might be a good idea to think of a few options and village hall promoters can then select which activity might work best in their space and with their audience/community. You can be as creative as you like when considering what wraparound activity you might like to offer alongside your show. On previous menus there have been companies offering a post-show Q and A session, a raffle or cake competition during an interval, and also the chance for audience members to come up on stage and play with costumes or props from the show. 

    In the application form, we ask you to think about what wraparound activity you might consider offering alongside your show, however, these ideas need not be fully formed yet.  If selected for the project, we would work with you to think through what wraparound activities you could present.

  • Can I apply with an installation, or a piece which has a non-traditional performance format (e.g. outdoor or promenade)?
    Yes, though you should keep the guidelines above in mind.
  • What if I have a show which is currently in creation, and would be ready for touring in autumn 2020 and spring 2021?
    You are welcome to apply if you can send enough video material and information about the show. If you have a show in creation which is close to being finished and premiered, please include as much information about the show in the application form, along with detailed film footage of the show in its entirety. Pieces that are clearly in research and development or early stages will not be considered.  The panel need to have a clear sense of how your show will work and what it will entail. It is likely that priority will be given to shows which are fully made, as we need to be certain what kind of shows are offered through the menu.
  • What if I have no experience of rural touring?
    That’s fine. As long as you’re interested in the challenges and opportunities rural touring offers, then we warmly invite you to apply.
  • What if I have lots of experience of rural touring?
    You are also warmly invited to apply.
  • Do I have to be available to attend the Practical Introduction to Rural Touring for Dance LAB?
    Yes, this LAB is compulsory, unless you have substantial previous experience of touring rurally. If you are applying as a company, you should send one representative. They should be a lead artist within the company. Please keep the dates free in your diary if you are applying.
  • Will I be paid to attend the LAB?
    Yes, selected artists will be paid a fee to attend the LAB. Travel, accommodation and meals will also be covered.
  • How many artists will be chosen?
    Up to eight artists/companies with existing shows will be chosen for touring in this call-out. If your show requires adaptations before touring rurally you will be considered for a bursary of on average £1200.  Please note, this contribution will vary depending on what adaptations are necessary to make your show tourable in this context.
  • Can a company offer workshops?
    Yes we have money in our budget to help schemes and promoters pay for any workshops you can offer particularly for young people. These workshop are predominately for audience development purposes so workshops scheduled in weeks leading up to performances and not on the day of performances are particularly helpful in this regard.
  • Who is responsible for making my budget balance?
    That is you/your company/ your producer. We can offer guidance and look at budgets and have specific rural touring budget templates we can share but ultimately the responsibility of making the finances work lies with you. RTDI is an Arts Council funded project so if you are thinking of applying to Arts Council for project funding then be aware you can’t apply for help towards touring costs of shows promoted via RTDI. Some companies often combine touring to other venues along side any rural dates and apply for funds towards those dates that are not part of RTDI to help make a tour viable.