The Backstage to the Future: Caribbean, skills training for outdoor live events in San Andres Archipelago, Colombia programme is designed to develop and nurture future live event producers and technicians across the outdoor live events sector in San Andres, Jamaica and Venezuela, with a focus on technical and soft skills (communication/networking) for the performing arts and live events sector. It is intended to foster and strengthen relationships between United Kingdom (‘UK’), Colombia, Jamaica and Venezuela by encouraging learning and knowledge transfer between the countries and build links between institutions. It also aims to provide opportunities for young people in San Andres and Providencia, Colombia, Jamaica, and Venezuela to address specific core gaps within the music industry and live event design and delivery. The primary focus will be Colombia but also considering the wider Caribbean and Venezuela. Through this we endeavour to build capacity, connect the islands with each other and the UK, provide new employment opportunities thus creating more local resource and ultimately creating opportunity for economic sustainability of the smaller islands as well as engaging disenfranchised communities and youths.

Research shows that there are important gaps in the cultural sector related to scarcity of technical skills, particularly in the fields of Live Music and Performing Arts Events, Visual Arts and Film Production. This has provided the British Council with an unprecedented opportunity to develop programmes to train young generations in technical skills and strengthen capacity in the cultural sector. The British Council will use its position as a market leader in high quality cultural skills provision working together with the UK and local delivery partners to orchestrate this programme.

The programme will focus on providing training and skills development opportunities to 15-25 young people from across the Caribbean, Colombia and Venezuela. The programme will be composed of a training session, to be held in San Andres, Colombia which will be delivered from 31 August – 08 September 2017.

The objectives of the programme are to develop a technical skills training programme focussed on sound engineering, light design, stage management, live event production and management, community arts, and to embed this training with local showcasing during the Green Moon Festival. The programme aims to connect local festivals so that they can have more economic scale opportunities and do more business, and to connect and build trust between the Colombian islands of San Andres and Providencia with Venezuelan and Caribbean neighbours plus the UK. We hope that this will create employment, network and business opportunities for trainers and trainees and strengthen the islands’ training infrastructure to ensure that training is relevant, high quality, and informed by UK and international standard best-practice.  The long-term aim of the programme is to re-connect the islands of San Andres and Providencia with mainland Colombia and the greater Caribbean through mutual respect and understanding of their culture.

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