Genesis Conversations comes to Bristol Old Vic on 15 November

18 October 2022

A wide shot of inside the garden at the Barbican Centre. The walls are a mixture of brick and leaves, with branches and foliages hanging from every direction. On the ground is busy with people dressed in business attire, having drinks and talking to one another. Across the top of the image is the text 'Genesis Conversations' in white, and the Genesis Foundation logo. In the bottom right corner is a dark grey block with the text 'Next at Bristol Old Vic'

The Genesis Foundation today announced the second of their Genesis Conversations will take place in partnership with Bristol Old Vic at the theatre’s historic venue this November.

This series of events began in London in September 2022, with the aim to gather cultural leaders around a key issue of the cultural world today and match established well-known figures with emerging talent and mid-career artists. The Genesis Conversations are free events, and those who aren’t able to attend in person can either watch the live-stream or a playback on the Genesis Foundation channels.

They are open to anyone working in the arts, audiences, or those who support the sector through business or public support.

This next conversation takes place on 15 Nov in Bristol Old Vic’s award-winning front of house ‘Courtyard’ space. It will explore the theme ARTS IN A TIME OF CRISIS looking at how we build a resilient future for the Arts.

One of the panellists is former Artistic Director of Bristol Old Vic, Tom Morris, who held the position for 12 years, before stepping down this October.

Tom Morris said: 

“In world which is bewildered by change and divided by unprecedented economic, social and environmental challenges, what might we expect or hope for from our artists? Do we want them to charm us, to challenge us or inspire us to build a better world?  Do we want them to shine a light on injustice, call us to arms, or release the creative potential of our children?  Do we want them to bring people together and remind us of precious things and precious people we have lost? Or do we just want them to make us laugh and cry and forget for a moment the struggles of the rest of our lives?”

John Studzinski, Founder and Chairman of the Genesis Foundation, said:

“The Genesis Foundation is delighted to present Genesis Conversations in Bristol. Through this series, our exceptional network of talented artists and visionary arts leaders deliver talks of the highest quality for artists and arts professionals to thrive in a tough climate. This is our first cultural discussion conversation with one of our important Genesis regional partners and audiences, and we are pleased to be partnering with Bristol Old Vic and Tom Morris, a long-time friend and a brilliant creative mind. We look forward to seeing him and his panel tackle such a timely topic as Arts in a Time of Crisis.

The chair and panellists for this event will be announced later in October.

To attend ARTS IN A TIME OF CRISIS live or online, book your free ticket here, or sign up to the Genesis Foundation Newsletter to receive updates about the live-stream.

The Genesis Foundation previously presented six Cultural Conversations in 2020 and 2021, hosted by William Russell at the Mansion House when he was Lord Mayor of the City of London. Originally conceived as live events, they continued throughout the Covid-19 crisis and were held online enabling audience participation via chat and video. The panel discussions gathered leaders and artists who included Sir Nicholas Serota, Kwame Kwei-Armah, Sharon Ament, Ayanna Witter-Johnson, Lemn Sissay, Dame Julia Payton-Jones CBE and many more. Leading arts journalists including Kirsty Lang and Farah Nayeri chaired debates about Cultural Technology and Innovation, Philanthropy, Youth and Access, the Economic impact of the Creative industries.