Major Performing Arts Framework

National Performing Arts Touring Scan: Expressions of Interest 

The Australia Council is seeking the services of a qualified consultant or consultant group to undertake a National Touring Scan of performing arts touring activity in Australia. This Scan will provide greater understanding of Australian publicly subsidised performing arts (non-commercial) touring activity including companies that tour, audiences, communities, networks, presenters and national and state/territory funding mechanisms. 

Support for a Scan was expressed through the MPA Public Consultations in late 2018 in which the need for enhanced coordination and alignment of touring, both interstate and intrastate, was identified as a priority.

The purpose of the Scan is to develop a clear understanding of the scope of non-commercial professional performing arts touring including associated engagement activities, reach and networks across Australia. Information gained through the Scan will enable governments to collaboratively support touring and to anticipate and respond to opportunities for more Australians to experience the performing arts.

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Summary of the Second Phase Public Consultation Outcomes

A summary of the outcomes of the second phase of consultation on opportunities to strengthen the National Framework for Governments’ Support of the Major Performing Arts Sector (MPA Framework) is now available  PDF  RTF

The second phase of consultation was managed by the Australia Council on behalf of the Meeting of Cultural Ministers (MCM) and took place in October and November 2018. It included 15 consultation forums held across all Australian jurisdictions and resulted in the submission of 370 formal stakeholder responses.

Thank you to all those who made submissions and took part in the consultation forums. Feedback received through this process, as well as through the first phase of consultation (an online public survey in July and August 2018), has informed advice the MCM Officials Working Group has provided to Ministers on how to better position the MPA Framework for the future. Ministers are considering options, and officials will continue work collaboratively in the lead up to MCM in [September] 2019.

Find out more:

Major Performing Arts Framework – Consultation Paper 

MPA Framework 

List of the 28 major performing arts companies 

Meeting of Cultural Ministers 

Meeting of Cultural Ministers Communique – 14 September 

Outcomes of first phase of consultation 

Under the National Framework for Governments’ Support of the Major Performing Arts Sector (the MPA Framework), the Australia Council administers funding to MPA companies on behalf of the Australian Government and state governments, at levels they set and agree to. The MPA companies receive funding to develop and present excellent artistic works and foster a vibrant and sustainable performing arts sector.

Download the A National MPA Framework (pdf) here.

The Australia Council strengthens the arts ecology through the support and strategic development of regularly funded organisations by:

  • Managing funding relationships with multi-year funded organisations including 28 Major Performing Arts companies to achieve the highest level of artistic practice and sustainability
  • Supporting arts organisations to lead in innovation, collaboration and development of original work
  • Supporting organisations to reflect on their artistic and cultural vibrancy
  • Offering a range of sector upskilling programs to build the capabilities of arts organisations and arts leaders
  • Strengthening sector knowledge, planning and forecasting through evidence based evaluation and data analysis.

MPA Framework Update

In 2018, Cultural Ministers Officials undertook research and consultations with MPA companies. In addition, the Department of Communications and the Arts delivered an online survey with the arts sector and broader community, to canvas views on strengthening the MPA Framework.

Feedback received from MPA companies and the wider sector indicated that there is support for changed arrangements.  The consultation contributed to the identification of opportunities to create an enhanced framework to better support Australia’s arts ecology.

These opportunities were outlined in the Major Performing Arts Consultation Paper. The Consultation Paper proposed a range of features to strengthen the arrangements and provide opportunities to create an enhanced framework that is better positioned for the future.

The MPA consultation forums were carried out in October and November 2018.

About the MPA Framework
About the MPA Framework
Consultation Paper
Download the Consultation Paper 
Consultation Forums
List of Consultation Forums  


Major Performing Arts Companies Overview

Major Performing Arts Companies Background

List of Major Performing Arts Companies

Major Performing Arts Collaborative Arts Projects 

MPA Panel Biographies

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