StartEast supported members who most strongly demonstrated how attending a specific Festival or Trade Fair would unlock business development opportunities by offering access to new networks, opportunities to secure new contracts, generate growth and build resilience.

Laboratory Media Education

Paul Weston & Will Wilson

Music TechFest in Stockholm, Sweden

September 7, 2018

As a result of attending the festival, LME has joined new support networks, attracted the interest of a major international technology developer, gained new knowledge, skills and technology that they will use in their work in the region, started exploring bringing new projects to the eastern region and new opportunities to showcase their work outside of the region, developed their profile both nationally and internationally, and started many conversations with other attendees to explore common ground. As both business partners were both able to attend the event, it gave them the opportunity to discuss and formulate new ideas stimulated by the festival.

Chalk Circle Theatre Company Ltd

Adina Levay

IETM in Munich, Germany

November 1, 2018

The plenary meeting offered Adina an opportunity to meet like-minded people who share the same artistic vision and are interested in international collaborations. Specifically she built relationships with an Arts Manager and Cultural Policy Maker from Romania and the Director of a Theatre Company from Lithuania, with whom she has been invited to visit and collaborate. Describing her conversations she said “we discussed the dynamics of festivals where hundreds of people participate, the best possible way of interacting, the importance of having a clear idea on what to achieve as well as having appropriate marketing material.”

The Suffolk Short Film Festival CIC

Rachel Aldridge & Claire Whittenbury

Aesthetica Film Festival in York, England

November 8, 2018

Rachel and Claire gained a greater understanding of the day to day running of a festival and the importance of having informed staff. They identified the festival as an example of rapid growth and successful development. Attending the festival exceeded their expectations, specifically in how their business proposal was received by other festivals and filmmakers who were positive and gave offers of their time and skills in support. They received offers of help from programmers of other festivals in the development of their own. Keeping a detailed journey of the festival on their Instagram enabled further engagement with filmmakers who were not in attendance.

Ensemble Dance Co

Hayley Matthews

CINARS Biennale in Montreal, Canada

November 11, 2018

Hayley made new connections with international dance artists and venue programmers and now feels part of a global community of creatives. She has started planning for a collaborative project between the UK and Canada. Being reflected back by so many international creatives made her hone how she articulates and packages what she does. She valued the chance to be seen and heard and to participate at this level, raising the profile of her and her business. She described attending the festival as a pivotal moment in her business and career. She made strong connections with Dance4 (Nottingham) and has been invited to future events they are hosting in the UK.

CULTure Babylon

Chris Lewis

Abertoir: International Horror Festival of Wales

November 13, 2018

Chris found it a useful and worthwhile experience which provided opportunities for networking with organisers and speakers and some good leads to follow up. “Being able to experience these things directly and see what works and what doesn’t have been extremely helpful and will help me develop my own event in the future (Fear in the Fens Festival), and more importantly will help me avoid some potentially costly and time-consuming errors. It’s given me a lot of insight into an established festival that I would not have been able to gain from a ‘desktop’ exercise. Being self-employed makes taking time out to attend events such as this doubly expensive as on top of the actual costs, there are loss of earnings.”

Out Loud Music

Joe Bailey & Marcus Neal

Eurosonic Noorderslag, Groningen, The Netherlands

January 16, 2019

Attending Europe’s biggest music industry showcase enabled Joe and Marcus to see a host of live bands, artists and venues. They met many new contacts including emerging artists, booking agents, reps from record labels, journalists and other industry figures, providing opportunities and a catalyst for new projects to expand the Smokehouse. As a result of various face to face meetings at the festival they’ve been able to bring new high quality artists to perform in Ipswich, secured the rights to film a recording session, planned a showcase with a record company, and submitted a PRS application for putting on gigs with established artists supported by local emerging acts.

Lennie Beare

Most Curious Wedding Fair, London, England

March 1, 2019

By attending Most Curious Wedding Fair Lennie was able to meet hundreds of potential new customers, clients and stockists, helping her to grow her business and develop beyond the current Norwich client base. Along with having a stand at the fair her jewellery was also used to style the models on the catwalk and the catwalk show was covered by multiple blogs, well known in the wedding industry, that then went on to feature her jewellery on their websites. Through meeting other creatives at the show Lennie has organised a photoshoot and is in talks with a bridal wear designer about collaborating for her next catalogue. She also received lots of interest from visitors about making their wedding rings.

Matt Linley

IETM Plenary Meeting, Hull, England

March 28, 2019

Sandy Horsley

Bologna Children’s Book Fair, Italy

April 1, 2019

Sandy’s work was represented on the Cambridge School of Art stand where she received a lot of great feedback from publishers and agents, and requests for her portfolio, and generated many new direct contacts in order to arrange meetings and secure contracts. She was overwhelmed by the level of interest from ‘big name’ publishers in seeing her work including Bloomsbury, Pavilion, Penguin Random House (both UK and US branches), Thames and Hudson, Faber, Harper Collins, Capstone and Simon and Schuster, and an increased level of interest from international publishers, including Capstone (US), Schwartz and Wade (part of Random House) (US), Page Street Publishing (US), Sourcebooks (US), Gecko Press (NZ), Beijing Tech and Edu(China) and Mizrahi Publishing (Israel).

Hey There Stickers!

Vicky Brett

Baby and Toddler show at Sandown Park in Surrey, England

April 11, 2019

Vicky attended the event at Sandown Park in Surrey to launch her unique Sticker designs and ‘Make Your Own Sticker Machine Packs’. As a result she has been offered opportunities to attend other exhibitions, to work in collaboration with other businesses and an opportunity to work with a blogger.

The Puppet Tree

Karen Crane

Newcastle Puppet Festival, England

April 11, 2019

This biennial performance and training event, produced by Moving Parts Arts Ltd, featuring puppet artists and enthusiasts from around the world, provided Karen with the opportunity to experience aspects of puppetry she had not previously seen before and to plan how to expand her own puppet business. She returned with new ideas, new contacts and the feeling that she has been able to step a little further into her chosen field.

Su Squire

SICK! Festival, Manchester

April 25, 2019

SICK! Festival places art at the heart of positive health and health at the heart of outstanding art. At this symposium Sue found inspiration in the work that other artists are creating on the subject of Death and Dying. She picked up some useful tips and felt a renewed sense of conviction in the development of her own practice and collaborative work. Subsequent audience feedback from a preview performance confirmed her new approach is effective and has resulted in some promising opportunities for future partnerships.

Out Loud Music

Liverpool Sound City, England

May 3, 2019

Tracy Satchwill

Museums & Heritage Show, Olympia, London, England

May 15, 2019

Tracy met and networked with key personnel from the museum and heritage sector and showcased her services and products. She introduced her work to the international market by meeting personnel from the Department of International Trade. She received advice from other exhibitors about after trade show strategies, attending other events and collating information at the show. At the show she secured 13 leads per day (against a target of 10). “This has been a very valuable experience enabling me to reach a wider market on a national level and explore international opportunities… it has enabled me to develop new relationships for future projects and hopefully have a big impact on the sustainability and growth of my business.”

SubMotion Productions Ltd

Rachel & Richard Prendergast

Cannes Film Festival, France

May 18, 2019

SubMotion attended Cannes Film Festival where their latest film project was being screened and they won Best Short film, which created an immediate buzz for the business online and new work enquiries. At the festival they met a huge number of influential and potential new business contacts and forged some great new relationships. “Without the support of StartEast we would not have been able to attend the Cannes Film Festival and this has been one of the most important networking events we could have ever wished to attend. The fact that we won in our competition and were able to physically be there to collect the award and have photos taken is great PR for the business and also a priceless experience and education for Richard and I as we now move forward into the next film project.”

Zannie Fraser

Imaginate International Children’s Festival, Edinburgh, Scotland

May 30, 2019

Caz Slota

Edinburgh Festival Fringe, Scotland

May 31, 2019

Caz made some good new contacts and was able to meet up with several producers and theatre companies who she had an existing relationship with, to speak to them about her new freelance business. She had several expressions of interest and was also invited to see a show by a new contact which is touring the UK next year and was interested in her services. “All the practical aspects of my trip were excellently taken care of by StartEast, meaning I could concentrate on meetings and the shows … a fantastic opportunity to expand and promote my business”.

Pip Norton

Sheffield Doc Fest, England

June 6, 2019

Nathaniel Peterkin

By Design conference, Bratislava, Slovakia

June 7, 2019

Matt Linley

UK Theatre Touring Symposium, London, England

June 17, 2019

Alexander Whitley Dance Company

Festival Montpellier Danse, France

June 21, 2019

Stuff of Dreams

Karen Goddard

National Rural Touring Forum, Bangor, Wales

July 2, 2019

Julia Webb

Ledbury Poetry Festival, England

July 5, 2019

Printer Johnson

Vicki Johnson

Home & Gift Fair in Harrogate, England

July 14, 2019

LJ Hope Productions

Lucy Farrant

Blue Dot Festival, Cheshire, England

July 19, 2019

Mark Finbow

Edinburgh Festival Fringe, Scotland

August 2, 2019

Briony Bax

Edinburgh International Book Festival, Scotland

August 11, 2019

Gillian Dean

Edinburgh Fringe Festival, Scotland

August 19, 2019

Lost in Translation Circus

Letni Letna, Prague

August 27, 2019

Glass House Dance

FiraTarrega, Spain

September 4, 2019