The ACED Project
Nørrebro Theatre had long wanted to become more audience focused in their work, finding new ways of reaching, communicating and engaging with their audience. Also, the theatre wanted to make their audience focused work a job across the organisation and not just for the usual suspects (communication and marketing). To reach this aim the theatre wanted to create a common language for audience development that everyone inhouse understood. Nørrebro Theatre had a previous collaborative relationship with CKI, which was also a project partner of ADESTE+. This European project was a great opportunity to experiment and work together.
A part of the initial phase of artistic partners testing the original ACED concept, the initial workshops were experiments in order to see what worked and what didn’t. Tools such as the personas and the canvas have become central to how the theatre works and the fact that the workshops involved all of the staff has given the theatre a common language and understanding of their work. By using these tools, the theatre had a shared mechanism for discussion, as well as a platform for creativity that was rooted in the reality of the way the theatre did or could engage with different audience groups. It led to a range of imaginative approaches that ranged from simple front of house design to back stage videos, ensuring the theatre became a real living cultural organisation and not just one that 'put on events'.
Nørrebro Theatre has been successful in implementing different methods from the ACED workshops and these methods are now used on a daily basis. Nørrebro Theatre works with an 'audience canvas' as a primary part of their communication. In addition, the theatre has become more adept at matching types of performances with various audience groups.
Nørrebro Theatre have moved their perspective from a notion of audience development to an audience centred focus of their work. They have been creating and obtaining a mutual language and by going through this process this has provided a strong feeling of pulling in the same direction.