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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
Ruth Archer What's happened to Sidmouth? (230* d) RE: What's happened to Sidmouth? 04 Mar 11

Well, if I am put in the position of having to defend my programming, I am happy to put myself on the line and say yes, I AM proud of it. And the reason why I'm proud of it is because, in my opinion, we have some of the most interesting, diverse, exciting and innovative programming of any English folk festival, and I think our audiences will really enjoy it. Certainly the overwhelming feedback over the past two years would indicate that this is the case.

I'm very pleased that you worked in the arts and consider your programming to have been inclusive and the organisations to have been acclaimed - presumably those are adjectives you use because they are things that you are proud of...?

We wouldn't do the audience research we do every year - and act upon it - if the needs of our audiences were not paramount. By and large we try not to give excessive attention to one person's opinions, because that's not a particularly representative sample. We tend instead to respond to trends in opinion, an example of which can be seen in this year's re-vamped social dance programme. However, when someone raises issues and criticisms on a public forum such as this one, I am put into the awkward position of having to respond publicly to one individual's perspective and criticisms. I hope you will acknowledge, as an arts professional yourself, that it would be difficult for me to continue further with this dialogue in this particular context. Thanks.

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