Report for the five Scottish national performing companies: April 2015 to March 2016

Annual report on National Theatre of Scotland, Royal Scottish National Orchestra, Scottish Ballet, Scottish Chamber Orchestra and Scottish Opera.

Annex A: National Performing Company Criteria

Criteria for attaining and maintaining status as a National Performing Company

In order to attain and maintain the status of National Performing Company, [the Company], working in partnership with the Scottish Government, must:

1. Demonstrate that they have implemented the programme of activity detailed within their annual funding agreement, carried out large scale productions, operated on a scale which is international, national and local, and met the criteria set out in this annex, to appropriate high standards.

2. Achieve the highest professional artistic standards, subject to available resources, a continued commitment to:

  • performance excellence;
  • bringing forward work of an international standard;
  • the ongoing development of new works and productions;
  • innovation, in terms of the work produced and the way it is produced;
  • inspiring audiences, enriching their lives and fostering creativity;
  • quality education activities; and
  • the development of artists.

3. Operate within the budgets agreed with the Scottish Ministers. In doing so, [the Company] will:

  • provide the Scottish Government with copies of budgets, business plans, and strategy documents;
  • provide detailed monthly management accounts, and quarterly updated cash flow projections, demonstrating that they are operating sustainably within agreed budgets;
  • provide draft annual accounts within 3 months of the financial year end, and copies of the final audited accounts once signed off, highlighting the reasons for any significant variations between draft and audited accounts;
  • adhere to the financial monitoring procedures set out in the Scottish Government's grant offer letter;
  • provide the Scottish Government at regular intervals with copies of all Board papers and reports to the Board; and
  • ensure that any difficulties or significant changes in anticipated expenditure, and/or changes to the programme, that may arise are notified to the Scottish Government immediately.

4. Demonstrate that they have endeavoured to achieve a year-on-year increase in private sponsorship and other non-public income, together with a genuine corporate commitment to developing this avenue of funding and thereby reducing the proportion of the Company's income from the public purse.

5. While maintaining their distinctiveness with their own sector, work with the other National Companies to:

  • share best practice;
  • develop new ways of working together;
  • explore joint artistic planning and scheduling; and
  • identify and deliver efficiencies and contribute to the Scottish Government's Efficient Government programme.

6. Cost-effectively deliver broad access to [the artform] by:

  • ensuring that a range of high quality performances take place across the country (including full-scale where it can be accommodated), working with local authorities and others;
  • developing a broad and diverse audience base;
  • providing outreach community involvement programmes of an appropriately high standard, designed to give people across Scotland in all age and socio-economic groups the opportunity to experience, and where possible to participate in, [the relevant art form]; and
  • providing a full range of quality education activities targeted at people across Scotland, of all ages, and evaluating the success of those activities on an annual basis.

6. Provide leadership for the [artform] sector in Scotland, including:

  • leading the way in new developments and practices, and ensuring that best practice is shared throughout the sector;
  • demonstrating compliance with relevant legislation such as employment law, including pay and conditions and trade union recognition, and health and safety legislation
  • working with the Scottish Arts Council/Creative Scotland to develop [their artform];
  • playing a major role in the development of talent, and provide entry-level career opportunities for those who have the talent to benefit from such opportunities;
  • attracting and retaining the very best talent available in the sector, to work within [the Company];
  • being a leading exponent of Scotland's cultural distinctiveness; and
  • securing international recognition as a leader in their sector.

7. Represent Scotland internationally, both in promotional terms and as a demonstration of the excellence of Scotland's culture. In this context, [the Company] should:

  • show the world that Scotland is a modern, innovative country with a vibrant, diverse culture;
  • through international performance, raise Scotland's profile, attract artistic acclaim and stimulate pride; and
  • develop interest among those who may be able to bring potential economic and other benefits to the country


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