Module WXM-2269:
Community Arts Project

Module Facts

Run by School of Music and Media

20 Credits or 10 ECTS Credits

Semester 1 & 2

Organiser: Dr Gwawr Ifan

Overall aims and purpose

This module will enable a student to: explore several different aspects of arts management or arts administration, with particular reference to music; to give a clear idea of the range of personal and professional skills required in arts administration work; to acquaint students with the theoretical basis underpinning an informed approach to the promotion and management of the arts; to help students develop a range of practical skills involved in the field of arts administration; to made a specific study of an identified aspect of community activity, possibly involving analysis of present resources and recommendations for improvement; to produce a detailed report on and analysis of the project, identifying the achievement and challenges faced in each case; (where appropriate) to make an active contribution to the chosen institution, while studying some aspect of its activity.

Course content

This module offers students the opportunity to achieve a degree of working knowledge – both theoretical and practical – in the field of arts administration by means of a variety of activities concerning many types of organisations devoted in some way or another to the arts. During the year, the students will plan and undertake an extended independent placement within the community, with a specific defined goal. This may be in the Bangor area or elsewhere: a possible institution could be a school, hospital, arts centre or other arts organisation (e.g. festival, music society, orchestra). The project will have a clearly defined brief with an attainable target or targets: it might involve market research on behalf of an arts centre, with a view to producing a series of recommendations on policy, or it might involve organization of a series of educational workshops on a specific theme for a local school or schools. Students may wish to focus on the same community project (e.g. the Bangor Music Festival), given that their specific responsibilities are clearly defined in their individual briefs. The project will follow on from skills acquired in Semester 1.

Assessment Criteria


B- to B+ The work should display a sound grasp of the subject, a good level of conceptual thought, awareness of the main issues, with evidence of intellectual acumen and very good expression.

C- to C+

C- to C+ Work which displays fair knowledge of the subject, with some ability at conceptual thought (albeit inconsistent or otherwise flawed), and a general awareness of issues, with evidence of a generally intellectual approach, with good expression.


Please also see the Explicit Marking Criteria for Musicology:

A- to A** Work which displays a thorough grasp of the subject, with evidence of further study, deeper thought, originality of approach and excellent written skills.


D- to D+ Work which displays basic, restricted knowledge of the subject with limited ability at conceptual thought, and a limited awareness of issues, but has some evidence of a generally intellectual approach, with fair expression.

Learning outcomes

    1. Made a specific study of an identified aspect of community activity, possibly involving analysis of present resources and recommendations for improvement.
    1. Developed a sense of specific personal, social and administrative responsibility within a prescribed community context, involving a considerable degree of independent work in the chosen host institution.
    1. Gained an appreciation of the range of personal and professional skills required in arts administration work.
    1. Demonstrated that they have mastered a range of new skills in the fields of written and oral presentation as appropriate for this level of study.
    1. Demonstrated a sound understanding of the theoretical basis underpinning an informed approach to the promotion and management of the arts.
    1. Demonstrated an appreciation of the impact of cultural policy and the criteria of the Arts Councils and funding bodies on the provision and administration of the arts in Britain.
    1. Acquired a broad knowledge and critical understanding of the various factors involved in arts management.

Assessment Methods

Type Name Description Weight
LOGBOOK OR PORTFOLIO Promotional material

Answer parts (a) AND (b)

(a) Produce a professionally designed promotional leaflet, brochure or folder for an individual artist or ensemble. You may focus on any type of music, or other art form(s) if appropriate. The main rule is that the material you produce should be realistic, plausible and convincing – as true-to-life or as close to ‘the real thing’ as possible! You should include: • photograph(s) of the artist(s) • brief biographical and career details • repertoire specialities or sample programmes • quotes from reviews • contact details • anything else that is both relevant and plausible You should may particular attention to design and layout, illustration, and composing text with appropriate content and in suitable style.

(b) Write either a press release for a forthcoming appearance by the artist(s) or a covering promotional letter which you will send to the venue or festival managers together with the leaflet / brochure itself. (Recommended length for (b): 250 words min. up to one side of A4.)


Delivered in Week 8 of semester 1.

Think of your last experience of the arts, whether a concert, theatre performance, visit to a gallery etc., and answer the following questions. (a) How did you become aware of your ‘need’ to attend? Were you influenced by marketing activities at any point? (b) Why would anyone prefer this artistic experience rather than staying at home and watching television? (c) How would you convince others that it was worthwhile? (d) How did you know whether or not your ‘needs’ were satisfied? (e) Evaluate and summarize the extent to which the responses to that experience within your group are different


Select two contrasting concerts featured in this semester’s Pontio programme which you will attend as observer. Your brief is to compare and contrast the chosen concerts with a particular focus on presentation (by the musicians themselves: including questions of stage manner and ‘image’) and reception (by the audience: how did the audience appear to ‘receive’ or respond to the performance?). You may take basic headcounts which allow you to group the audience into broad age bands; you may consider the record of the numbers of different types of tickets sold; you make speak informally to selected (and willing!) audience members during the interval or after the concert. Your results might also contribute to answering such questions as: What are the different elements that contribute to the audience’s enjoyment (or otherwise) of a particular concert? Do some concerts attract a quite specific audience in addition to those who attend every concert? If so, how do you think these audiences hear about the concerts, and why do other types of concert not interest them?

Written assignment, including essay Media blurb

EITHER: 1. You have been appointed Artistic Director and General Administrator for a newly instituted Arts Festival which is to take place in a town / village / special building (e.g. cathedral, castle) in your home area. Produce an advance promotional illustrated brochure or report, whose aim is to inspire interest and support among possible sponsors and collaborators in the locality and beyond, and in which you outline your artistic, administrative and financial strategy for the festival. You must include a realistic budget that balances all elements of estimated Festival expenditure against likely income (grants, ticket sales etc), and shows how you would meet any shortfall. You should pay particular attention to how you can appeal to your target audience/reader at an appropriate level; directing material to your specific audience/readership (possible attenders of the event; potential sponsors; Lottery Board, Arts Council etc)


  1. The scenario: You have been invited to take part in a televised studio debate on the value and relevance of opera and the desirability or otherwise of continuing high levels of subsidy. For the purposes of this assignment, you may decide whether you will argue ‘for’ or ‘against’; you will also imagine your opponent’s counter-arguments (and consider your counter-arguments to their points). The task: Prepare a ‘script’ for the exchange that is likely to result. You may include any relevant data or examples that will help to illustrate or reinforce the various points made.


  1. ‘Even in the performing arts, good arts administration cannot be measured solely by ticket sales’. (John Pick and Malcolm Anderton, Arts Administration (2nd edn., 1996), p.16). What are some of the main challenges facing arts marketers in 2012?
Written assignment, including essay Essay

An extended essay or report of 4000 words or equivalent (where ‘equivalent’ might incorporate analysis derived from the placement), answering the targets set in the brief for your extended independent placement. The essay is to be submitted by noon on Monday of Week 13 (50%), testing Learning Outcomes 1-7. It should represent the fruit of a full semester of independent work. As with all academic writing, a full bibliography should be appended.


Teaching and Learning Strategy


Individual supervision as required, up to a total of 4 hours. It is anticipated that most of this will be requested in Semester 2.

Private study

Including preparation for classes and assignments.


Held in Weeks 1, 3, 5, 7, 9, 10, 11 of Semester 1, and 1, 3 and 5 of Semester 2.


Transferable skills

  • Literacy - Proficiency in reading and writing through a variety of media
  • Self-Management - Able to work unsupervised in an efficient, punctual and structured manner. To examine the outcomes of tasks and events, and judge levels of quality and importance
  • Exploring - Able to investigate, research and consider alternatives
  • Information retrieval - Able to access different and multiple sources of information
  • Inter-personal - Able to question, actively listen, examine given answers and interact sensitevely with others
  • Safety-Consciousness - Having an awareness of your immediate environment, and confidence in adhering to health and safety regulations
  • Presentation - Able to clearly present information and explanations to an audience. Through the written or oral mode of communication accurately and concisely.
  • Teamwork - Able to constructively cooperate with others on a common task, and/or be part of a day-to-day working team
  • Management - Able to utilise, coordinate and control resources (human, physical and/or financial)
  • Self-awareness & Reflectivity - Having an awareness of your own strengths, weaknesses, aims and objectives. Able to regularly review, evaluate and reflect upon the performance of yourself and others
  • Leadership - Able to lead and manage, develop action plans and objectives, offer guidance and direction to others, and cope with the related pressures such authority can result in

Subject specific skills

  • Skills of communication and interaction – oral and written communication, public presentation, team-working and collaboration, awareness of professional protocols, sensitivity, ICT skills, etc.
  • Skills of personal management – self-motivation, self-critical awareness, independence, entrepreneurship and employment skills, time management and reliability, organisation, etc.
  • Enhanced powers of imagination and creativity (4.17)


Resource implications for students


Reading list

Talis list to be provided once validation is complete.

Pre- and Co-requisite Modules

Courses including this module

Optional in courses: