Audience Development

Audience Development

— the heart of organisational change

The thread that runs through audience development, organisational change, and ultimately resilience, isn’t always visible, but in this session Vicky Price and Hardish Virk from the Wolverhampton Grand Theatre, will unpick it.

For them and the theatre, audience development has become central to its five-year strategy; with their South Asian audiences, and Memory Café for local communities with Dementia at the heart of this work. With its impact on training, mentoring, marketing, stakeholder partnerships, investment, staff recruitment, programming — everything that goes into running a business, over the last 20 months the focus on audience development has influenced a big change in the organisation.

In this session they will share the experiences, methodologies and outcomes that make up the valuable lessons they have learned.

What will I gain?

— Insight into the connection between change and resilience

— An understanding of the challenges involved in getting everyone on board and how to overcome them

— Knowledge of how far the benefits of audience development can reach

This session will be recorded and included in the Access All Areas Pass.


Hardish Virk | Audience Development Consultant

Hardish has thirty years’ experience in arts marketing, PR and audience development. He has advised artists and organisations (including Arts Council England; British Council; Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport; Danish Centre for Culture and Development) on audience development, race equality and diversity as well as consulted on policy and strategy. He also facilitates training and workshops.  

Speaker image courtesy of Hardish Virk (c) Ayah Ali Virk

Vicky Price | Associate Director of Development and Communications | Wolverhampton Grand Theatre

Over the last two years Vicky has been strategically involved with the National Theatre’s, Theatre Nation Partnership which has led to the advancement of Audience Development at The Grand.  She also sits on the Black Country Business Festival Steering Committee and in 2019 was a finalist for Business Person of The Year at The Black Country Chamber Awards.