Daisy Giuliano talks about her first week at Derby Theatre

I knew that the work of Derby Theatre was/is important, innovative and exciting as I had experienced great productions as an audience member and heard of their education work as a member of the public. But now as part of the staff team here, my first week has shown me just how committed and ambitious Derby Theatre is to opening art out to the communities of Derby and supporting the development of those they reach. It’s also shown me the sheer volume of stuff that is happening all the time and it’s a wonderfully creative environment to be working in. 

My job role is ‘Development Officer’ which doesn’t really give much away - but put quite simply, my role is to raise awareness/support of the work of the Theatre and raise funds to be able to maintain and develop that work.

As is the case with most things, it’s hard to break through the noise of everyday life and raise awareness of the challenging funding climate arts organisations are now working in. There has been a significant shift from public sector funding to the need for arts organisations to find alternative sources of income to allow their work to continue and develop. As a result, a lot of arts organisations which are registered charities, including Derby Theatre, are highlighting their charitable status and activity more to try and increase private giving from the public, companies and trusts and foundations. 

I think it is important that arts organisations are as transparent as possible to their audiences about how they are funded, what their money is being spent on and try as much as possible to create relationships with their audiences to sustain their work for the future. I feel being as honest and open as possible helps to create trust and respect and ultimately a better experience for all.

My focus for the first few months in the role will simply be to shout out loud about the work Derby Theatre is doing and has the ambition to do in the near future – and the funding that is attached to that work. I’ll be shouting (politely, and via different methods of communication) to local businesses, trusts and foundations, the current audiences of Derby Theatre and the potential future audiences of Derby Theatre too.

In the meantime, whilst I’m learning the ropes, you can read more here about the different ways Derby Theatre currently receives funding. I feel very lucky to not only be able to work for a charity I feel so passionately about, but also to be in a position that allows me to spend most of my time telling others about how great it is too!

Daisy Giuliano, Development Officer at Derby Theatre