Pete Vance is the newest member of the Watershed team. We asked our latest Producer to introduce himself and a brand new programme he's running (Creative Producers International) – and detail how you can get involved, wherever you are in the world…
Hello, I'm Pete. I want to introduce myself as the new Producer at Watershed's Pervasive Media Studio, having joined them fresh from the world of TV Production. My job used to involve exploring social history and sharing peoples' life stories through documentaries. Sometimes this would mean conducting a poignant and moving interview with World War Two veteran. One time it meant attempting to recreate the forensic analysis of Ground Zero after 9/11 in a disused science lab in Avonmouth with a bin bag full of carefully selected props and myself and two colleagues in white coats and goggles. I promise the end result didn’t look as terrible as it sounds.
Now I have entered a brand new creative arena, and find myself immersed in a world full of completely different forms of storytelling. The vibrancy, creativity, imagination (and sometimes downright weirdness!) that radiates from the heart of this place is very difficult to put into words. But it's ace.
The really great thing is that I get to do this in my home town of Bristol, a city that has inspired me in so many ways over the years. My new role – producing a programme called Creative Producers International that will run until the end of 2019 – allows us to share some home-grown creativity with people all over the world.
We are giving fifteen Creative Producers, from the UK and all over the world - and from all sorts of different disciplines and backgrounds - the opportunity to join us on a really exciting new journey.
The mission of Creative Producers International is to ensure that the focus of our growing cities is on the people and communities that reside in them. We want to expand the values that Watershed have championed through our Playable City projects (like Shadowing, Urbanimals and Hello Lamp Post) by giving our Creative Producers the skills to develop brand new work within their own cities, wherever they are.
The result will be exciting collaborations, ground breaking original work and a new kind of conversation taking place in communities all over the world. We hope to change the way we all think about our cities in the future and help us to lead lives that are happier, healthier and culturally richer.
Today’s the day I’ve been waiting for; the open call for applicants to our programme is now live! People can now show us what they’ve got to offer and why they want to join us (just apply by 09:00 AM BST on Mon 5 June). I can’t wait to see who our Creative Producers are going to be; to help guide them through this process and discover the vision and passion I know they will bring with them.
If you don't fancy applying, worry not. I'll make sure our online community has a front row seat to it all - the experiments, the successes, the chaos and everything else in between.
Our first major event is a three-week residential lab in October this year. It will culminate in a Playable City Conference held at Watershed on 19 October as part of Bristol's Festival of the Future City, which will include a workshop led by our Producers exploring the themes of their work. If you’d like to experience the type of vision and creativity the programme encourages first hand, tickets will be on sale soon, but in the meantime you can register your interest here.
So, time for me to get to work! I'll be in touch again very soon to introduce you to our new colleagues. To everyone applying for Creative Producers International – good luck!