Events: Implementation

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Rob Pope: After I’ve discussed what’s going on at what particular times, we then have a meeting with exhibitions officer Alice to decide what members of staff are needed and where, not just purely from a day to day operational point, but from actually a setup, because obviously our staff would help how the setup goes when the gallery’s closed. So they’d help with hanging the paintings, painting the walls making sure everything’s ready and good to go in the lead-up to the grand opening and then thereafter managing the event.
Jo Cunningham: We do very much work as part of a team. So we would have the learning officer involved and we may have the exhibitions officer involved, certainly the museum manager would be involved. And if it’s an event that we haven’t run before, we would have our museum services manager involved who would look after the front of house team and the practicalities so that’s our starting point, really.
Doris Pearce: When you’re getting a bit closer to the time, you need to start communicating with all the key people, so obviously your curators already know, but do the front of house know, do the AV team know, other members of staff you might need. So it’s thinking about where the events are going on, is the space booked, it’s a really fundamental one but it’s so easy to overlook. Is the space booked? Have you got enough members of staff, have you got any equipment, and communicating those things. You’ll find with most institutions there’s a received way of doing things, whether it’s sending out emails (it’s a good idea to send out emails, but it’s a really important to have some meetings to make sure the message goes in. Sometimes it doesn’t.)
Jo Cunningham: We use our own staff, who make the most of our collections to bring them to life, but we also work with artists, writers, people who are songwriters even, performers, we have some reenactment on out site, we do lots of things like that for school age children and younger people.
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Just know your lines and don’t bump into the furniture.

Noel Coward, Playwright, Composer, Director, Actor and Singer

Putting on an event requires good organisational skills, effective communication skills and a willingness to get stuck in to ensure everything runs seamlessly. Everything you do behind the scenes in preparation for the event is essential so that the event is a success. On the day you must be calm and quick to respond to any problems.

What logistics do you need to think about on the day of the event?

  • What needs setting up?
  • What time are you setting up?
  • What time is everyone involved in the event arriving?
  • Do you have contact numbers for everyone?
  • Does everyone involved in the event have an event schedule?
  • Who is the project manager to make decisions quickly on the day?
  • How long is your event? How will you ensure it sticks to time?
  • How will you encourage the team to stay behind and help clear up at the end of the night?

How do you ensure the audience feels welcome and relaxed?

  • Who is looking after the audience when they arrive?
  • Who is introducing the event?
  • What do you need to consider to make sure the audience are comfortable?
  • Are you providing any refreshments or not?