Gladstone a thriving city with great arts potential: manager

MICHAEL Bloyce, Gladstone arts and culture manager, has high hopes for his new hometown as he reviews the past year.

"Gladstone is a thriving industrial city with great arts potential," he said.

"The expanded entertainment centre is now one of Queensland's best multi-purpose venues; the regional gallery's program is highly respected and our library service is well supported.

"The success of these facilities and events like the Queensland music festival's Boomtown show that confidence in the local arts is not misplaced.

"Gladstone's community and social fabric will continue to be enriched and my hope is that everyone will benefit."

Mr Bloyce said he personally felt the value of being a member of the Gladstone Performing Arts Company.

Mr Bloyce recommends arts groups apply for funding grants at local and federal levels.

"Not enough people feel they could be successful, but are encouraged to at least try. What is there to lose?" he said.

Council Community Donation and the Gladstone Foundation Funding programs lack applications from the arts community.

The value for money when sponsoring the arts is one of the best economic multipliers for the region.

Arts Queensland said: "The arts and creative industries contributed $31.1 billion to GDP (Gross Domestic Product) in 2008-09 and 95% of Queenslanders believe that people can enjoy both arts and sport."

Mr Bloyce is working towards making corporate sponsorship of the arts easier.

"The value for money when sponsoring the arts is one of the best economic multipliers for the region," he said.

"The positive flow-on to many levels of local business is substantial, from artists marketing their work, to accommodation, as people travel for events."