We throw awesome Birthday-AGM-Parties!

Posted: April 9, 2010 in Industry Thoughts

It’s true. And if you don’t believe us, just have a look at some of Toast Coetzer’s pictures below, or visit our Facebook album for the full monty.

This year, our AGM was a kid’s party. Not because we behaved like children (although…) but because we were turning 5! So all FTH:K members hauled out their most kid-like clothes (from Snoopy, to Superman, to nappies, to tutus, to PJ’s – we had it all), Tina from Queen of Tarts made personalised cupcakes, Angela made Chico Clowns and racing cars out of Boudoir Biscuits, Tink made Jelly Oranges (although it seems that not all mums made these for their kid’s parties!) and we even had a game of Pass-the-Parcel – wrapped expertly by Simangele. It was a great evening, one in which we got to reflect on 2009 and all its successes and challenges. If you were there, THANK YOU for being a part of it. We consider it one of the most affirming activities that we hold annually.

For anyone who hasn’t been to an FTH:K AGM, you need to know that we do things a little differently. Usually AGM’s are boring as all hell, right? Right. Which, in the arts, is a curious phenomenon. Seems that in an attempt to “take ourselves seriously” in the business of the arts, arts organisations copy the more traditional business-meeting models and present dry, dull AGM’s. This is insane if you think that by the very nature of what most arts organisations do, we are feeding back on (or should be, anyway) vibrant, exciting projects and programmes. Our AGM’s should follow suit, no? So often, AGM’s are treated as a chore that needs doing only to satisfy certain constitutional obligations, but we like to look at them as excellent marketing opportunities to publicly celebrate the successes of the previous year. Bring in the photographers! Bring in the media! Bring in the VIP’s! Bring in the supporters! Bring in booze and food! Get your performers to perform! Get your audience to engage! After all, it’s just another kind of Opening Night.

Having said all of that, we recognise that FTH:K may not have it right, and people may disagree with how it does things. Wouldn’t be the first time! But we do think we need to remember that we are in the business of the arts when planning meetings like this, and try not to fall into the trap of taking on more traditional business formats in an attempt to be taken seriously. Our work and our honesty towards that work should be enough. And with a turn out of 40+ people this year, we must be doing something right!

See you next year for birthday number 6!

  1. This is great! So many AGMs are extraordinarily boring. I would really like to have more details about who you invited, your agenda, your feedback. Thank you so much.

    • fthk says:

      Hi Penny – thanks for the comment. Why don’t you give us a call (see our contacts page for details) and we can chat more about it all. Regards, Tanya

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