Music Venue Trust has announced the launch of a new interactive area at Venues Day 2017, which will provide an opportunity for "VIP Speed Dating" between the UK’s top agents and grassroots music venues.
The Sandbox has been developed in association with eight of the UK’s leading live music agencies, ITB, CAA, X Ray, Coda, UTA, Primary, ATC, and Marshall Arts.
Representatives of grassroots venues will get the chance to spend 10 minutes networking directly with agents representing new and emerging artists at Venues Day, which takes place on Tuesday, October 17 at Ministry Of Sound in London.
“The Sandbox is a fantastic opportunity for venues to meet with agents and talk to them directly about their venues right across the UK," said Music Venue Trust (MVT) CEO Mark Davyd (pictured). "We’ve been working on this quietly for some time, and really appreciate how the industry has got behind the initiative to support this idea. The Sandbox is all about playing nicely and building something great together.”
The day features a full programme of panels, sessions, workshops, one-to-one advice and opportunities. MVT will coordinate 10-minute slots for venues to meet and greet agents, to pitch their venue and to allow agents to pitch their acts.
“We hope The Sandbox will create new touring opportunities for artists and agencies,” said Beverley Whitrick, strategic director of Music Venue Trust and the event producer of Venues Day 2017.
“One of the main things we learned from our regional meetings last year was some venues, particularly in unusual or rural locations, feel under-used and lack the connections to access great artists. Even in cities, some of these venues have access to very specialist audiences which could be really valuable information to touring artists. We have so many venues that could benefit from this, we’re going to use a speed dating format to try and give as many of them the opportunity as possible. We aren’t expecting any marriages, but it could be the start of some beautiful and productive friendships."
The Sandbox is supported by Openstage, a tech platform that enables “geo-linking and geo-funding” allowing users to create and fulfil demand geographically.