A programme by Performing Arts Fund NL to promote Dutch music, theatre and dance abroad.
11 May. '20

Effects of Dutch Performing Arts’ and Dutch Music Export’s activities in 2017 and 2018



Research reveals that Dutch Performing Arts successfully expands and intensifies relationships between supply (Dutch producers/artists) and demand (international presenters). Dutch Performing Arts’ international promotional activities in 2017 & 2018 led to new relevant contacts and the consolidation of ties with existing contacts. There is a greater interest in and awareness of performing arts from the Netherlands. Although Dutch Performing Arts cannot directly affect the extent to which parties actually book performing arts from the Netherlands, half of the Dutch respondents who participated in a professionals’ programme reported seeing an increase in bookings.
In 2019, Lisa Wolters conducted a midterm research to determine the effects achieved thus far by Dutch Performing Arts’ and Dutch Music Export’s efforts and activities in 2017 and 2018. Online surveys were held among (representatives) of Dutch artists and groups as well as foreign-based professionals (venues and festivals in particular) who took part in a professionals’ programme or who collaborated with Dutch Performing Arts in a focus programme.

Results of Dutch Performing Arts
A total of 106 people completed the survey about Dutch Performing Arts’ activities (representing 54 Dutch artists and groups and 51 foreign-based professionals). Respondents were asked about the extent to which a particular activity contributed to a specific goal such as an increase in knowledge, relevant contacts, bookings or coverage by international press and media. They were also asked to indicate how important these effects are to them.

Effects relating to relationship management, awareness and the development of knowledge score the highest, among both the artists and groups and the foreign-based professionals. Effects relating to actual bookings, performances, sales and/or co-productions are less prominent so far. Ninety-five percent of the foreign-based professionals that took part in a professionals’ programme report having gained a greater interest in performing arts from the Netherlands. Fifty-two percent of the artists and groups report an increase in performances abroad after having performed as part of a professionals’ programme.

Artists and groups also indicate that they most strongly value the (increased demand for) performances abroad. This is something that Dutch Performing Arts cannot control, however. Foreign-based professionals said that they sometimes need more time and/or funding to book or present Dutch work or to collaborate with Dutch artists and groups.

Having the right contacts and having a good relationship with those contacts, as well as being up to date on developments can be seen as key conditions to achieving more bookings, performances, sales and/or co-productions abroad. All in all, Dutch Performing Arts seems to contribute particularly to the realisation of precisely these conditions.

A final important insight provided by the study is that not all artists and groups were aware that the activities they took part in were undertaken by Dutch Performing Arts.

Results of Dutch Music Export (pop music)
Given the limited number of people who completed the survey by Dutch Music Export (21 respondents), these survey results mainly provide a useful starting point for further research into the effects of the programme.

Artists and groups mainly report having received (more) bookings abroad, having formed new partnerships in terms of deals or contracts, and having established new relevant contacts. The artists and groups attach most value to gaining knowledge about working abroad and/or with foreign parties. This is something that Dutch Music Export is increasingly focusing on through its networking and advisory/supportive activities.
The responses of the artists and groups show an appreciation of tailor-made support and advice by Dutch Music Export (when it comes to distribution, promotion and laying out attainable plans).
Like the artists and groups, the small number of foreign-based professionals who completed the survey report having established new relevant contacts and having acquired a greater interest in Dutch music after participating in an activity by Dutch Music Export. So far, these activities only occasionally result in collaborations with or bookings of a Dutch artist or band.
Both target groups indicate a wish for (more) activities to expand and intensify their networks.

N.B.: The marketing scheme was not part of this study as it is not funded through the Performing Arts Fund NL.

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Want to know more about the research findings? Contact Susanne Moed via s.moed@dutchperformingarts.nl.
Research reveals that Dutch Performing Arts successfully expands and intensifies relationships between supply (Dutch producers/artists) and demand (international presenters)