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Creative Arts East: Plugged In – Commission Opportunity

A New Digital / Live Hybrid Engagement Project for Rural Audiences 

There is a video reading of this call-out with subtitles on both the Creative Arts East YouTube channel and on the Plugged In page on our website.

What is Plugged In?

Plugged In is a new project run by arts and community development charity Creative Arts East. The project will work specifically with artists who feel that their voice and story may be under-represented amongst rural audiences, to create a range of digital and/or live performance work along with connected community engagement activities. The project’s aims are:

  • To support performance artists with protected characteristics to have greater understanding of, and access to, rural audience demographics and distribution opportunities.
  • To upgrade and diversify the portfolio of work available for the rural creative circuit and its audiences. 
  • To engage new audiences in the digital world.
  • To broaden the cultural ambitions and horizons of existing rural audiences.

To find out more about the wider work of Creative Arts East, visit

Who Can Apply?

These commissions are open to artists who self-identify as Disabled, and our approach is informed by the social model of Disability with an understanding of intersectionality. We strongly encourage applications from women and non-binary people, Black people and people of colour, and people from working-class or lower income backgrounds. Artists must be over the age of 18 and based in the UK. 

What Are We Looking For?


Work should be appropriate for digital, live viewing, or a combination of both! With the pandemic changing the way that audiences consume art and creativity, we want to work with artists who can think outside the box and understand the need for flexibility in the current climate.  We are not seeking recordings of full existing performances for online viewing.  Episodic work, short digital performances or live streams are more likely to be successful.

Engagement with Communities

As well as completed pieces of work, a big part of this project will be inclusive creative engagement activities that can run in conjunction with your work. We would like you to think about any additional enhancement activities you could offer to build intrigue and engagement in both your performance and the project. This activity could be in-person or digital workshops, creative activities, behind-the-scenes, Q&As, postal packs, whatever fits with both the project aims and your work.  We want the project to feel as much of a shared experience between audience and performer as possible.

Work that will be considered

  • A brand-new piece of work created specifically for this project.
  • Work that already exists but would be re-worked specifically for this project.
  • Work that is in development and can be aligned to the outcomes of this project.
  • These funds cannot be used to extend the reach of a pre-existing piece of work that is already freely available to the public.

Creative Arts East will act as Executive Producers in the development of your work, pairing you with local groups and communities, helping you develop your work and shape it to suit the audiences we currently serve. This can include a remote or real residency in a rural community venue.

Key Information

Number of commissions available: We have 2 commissions available as part of this project. However, we do also have a separate callout for 3 pieces of work that already exist, details of which can be found on our website.

Timeline: Activity will take place between September 2021 – January 2022.

Budget: The total fee (including VAT) is £3000 per commission (we have additional funds to cover any costs incurred with the residency element)

We can fund 100% of the work. If you do have or need additional funding for this project, we expect to be the main funder, meaning you should not require more than £3000 from other sources. 

If your project is dependent on additional funding from other parties, you should explain this in your application and indicate whether this funding is confirmed or not.

Access funds: Additional funds are available for any access assistance that participating artists may require during their work for the project.

Accessibility for audiences: Funds are also available for the incorporation of BSL, captioning or any other access support features for work produced through the project that may not already have these incorporated.

We will also be offering further training and development opportunities as part of the project, including Rural Touring surgeries for newcomers to the circuit and a bespoke CPD budget for commissioned artists.

If you have any questions about applying for Plugged In, or would like this submission brief in another format, please get in touch with Karen Jeremiah via

We are also offering short 30 minute advice surgeries on the following dates: 21st, 24th and 29th June – you can book your slot here.

Deadline for Submissions: Friday 9th July 2021

How to Apply

Applications can be made via an online form here.

Alternatively, you can submit a video application of up to 8 minutes. This should be sent as a link to

Video Submissions

If you are submitting a video, please ensure you cover the following in your application:

  • Your name, company name and title of work
  • About the show – please try to include the following:
  • Themes
  • Art form
  • Target audience
  • Audience experience
  • Delivery format
  • Duration
  • Details of the engagement activity
  • Costs and rough breakdown for show / activities
  • Provide any additional links to videos, website, reviews – please include these in the accompanying email.

We aim to respond to all applicants by 26th July.

Please note that due to the expected volume of applications, we may not be able to give individual feedback.