Online arts channel The SPACE goes live

As reported by the Teaching Drama blog in February, The Space, a new online channel dedicated to the arts has gone live. The project is a collaboration between Arts Council England (ACE) and the BBC.

The Space was created to cover the many events taking place for this years’ Cultural Olympiad. On the theatre section of the website, the channel is making the 37 Shakespeare plays in 37 different languages, as part of the Globe to Globe festival, available to visitors online. So far, the full length version of Venus and Adonis  is available to watch. There is also a film of festival director, Tom Bird, explaining his inspiration for founding the Globe to Globe festival.

There are sections on the site dedicated to film, dance, music and literature and the spoken word. The resources on the website will expand as the Cultural Olympiad gets into full swing. You can access The Space through its website, or through an app for smartphones and tablets. Content has also been made available on The Space’s very own television channel, which can be found on Freeview HD on channel 117.

The channel is undergoing a six month pilot scheme and will available until October. However, director general of the BBC Mark Thompson said, ‘this is meant to be a pilot but we hope it can have a life way beyond that. We’ve had to come out of our ivory tower and think of ourselves as an enabler, a channel for the British public to find great art.’

Arts Council and BBC create new online arts channel

Arts Council England (ACE) in partnership with the BBC are to launch a new online arts channel called The Space. The channel will contain work from theatres across the UK. The project will run from 1 May until the end of October 2012.

The Space is described by ACE as ‘an experimental digital arts media service and commissioning programme that could help to transform the way people connect with, and experience, arts and culture.’

53 applicants were successful in applying to create original commissions for The Space. Some of the notable entries include Pilot Theatre Company, Blast Theory and Bristol Old Vic. Two entries which will capture this summer’s Shakespearean festivities are The Globe, who will be documenting their Globe to Globe festival and the Royal Shakespeare Company, who are creating World Shakespeare Festival TV to capture the highlights from this summer’s performances.

Chief executive of ACE, Alan Davey said: ‘The Space is one of our most significant interventions of recent years and I’m delighted to be able to announce such exciting and imaginative contributions from artists and organisations. It will inspire a great generosity of spirit among the participating organisations, with each of them committed to documenting and sharing the journey they all are taking together.’

The Space will be accessible across four different platforms; PCs, internet connected televisions, smart phones and tablets. The resources will also be made available through video on demand on Freeview.

The project has been developed to coincide with the London 2012 festival and the many celebrations happening around the UK this year, including the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee and the Olympic Games.  Roly Keating from the BBC said: ‘We believe we can make something really special happen to celebrate 2012’s unique summer of arts.’

To find out more about the participating applicants visit the Arts Council website. The Space ( will launch in May.