Steve and I have submitted another Arts Council, Grants for the Arts, Application through our company Kelmscott Productions. This time it's not for Research and Development but towards the cost of producing a show, and therefore a much more complicated application. We won't hear the verdict until April. We got advice and feedback on the application from so many brilliant, kind and wonderful people but most especially from Watford Palace Theatre.
With help from Watford in 2012 we got an Arts Council research and development grant for a two week workshop and performance of our musical I Capture the Castle at Drury Lane.
I am so glad that the Arts Council have decided to put up the ceiling for the amount usually given for Research and Development grants. It used to be £10,000 and has now been put up to £15,000. With musical theatre R & D there is so much more to pay out for than with a straight play, so I'm sure it will be especially welcomed there.
I know now why the application Steve and I made for our first musical, Possessed, never got through. We had partnership from Oxford Playhouse and some other kind investors but it wasn't enough because we didn't understand the process well enough. We were told to apply for what we needed, which we did. No one told us that there was a figure that was usually given for R & D. I see now why we were never going to get that grant. If only someone had told us about the unspoken £10,000 limit.
Now that we have done it once I realise it is something that can be possible, but you really have to ask for help from people who have been making these applications for years as well as from the Arts Council themselves. It is a lot of work, but that grant can be a matter of life or death as to whether your show gets a future or not, especially in the early stages!