Global connections – virtually and face-to-face
International network for contemporary performing arts (IETM) members are due to gather for their annual plenary meeting taking place across 24 locations around the world in early October. Finnish members will form part of a Covid-appropriate Baltic-Finnish bubble at the event HQ in Riga.
The coronavirus pandemic has had our global communications networks pinging like never before and helped to create a whole new virtual meeting universe. With significant restrictions now in place on international travel, there is a new focus on forging links closer to home, and IETM's autumn meeting is an excellent example of this trend. In an exceptional move, this year's meeting will take place in 16 European cities and eight other locations around the world simultaneously.
Fittingly titled IETM Multi-location, the meeting will be fully accessible online. Some Finnish delegates and IETM members will be travelling to Riga, Latvia, where the New Theatre Institute of Latvia, headed by recently-appointed artistic director Bek Berger, will be acting as the event host.
The visitors from Finland, together with their Baltic colleagues, plan to set up their own base in the Latvian capital. Jari Juutinen of sadsongscomplex.fi already has first-hand experience of the benefits IETM offers:
"I attended last year's meeting in Hull following some, shall we say, earnest encouragement from our French agent. When I got there, I realised immediately how spot on that advice had been. It's a fantastic system, perfectly set up for networking. We went home with great new contacts and something tangible too; we'd started planning a co-production with a Spanish producer there and then. With Covid-19, those plans are now obviously on ice for the time being, but we're confident the production will make it to the stage eventually."
TINFO / 17 Sep, 2020