Page 2215 - Week 08 - Tuesday, 4 June 2013

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MR SMYTH: Minister, what is the progress on the Kingston art hub, and what is the progress on assistance to Megalo?

MS BURCH: I thank Mr Smyth for his question. The work on supporting Megalo continues. They are looking to a midyear move—probably in the next month or thereabouts, as I understand it, from the most recent advice—into office space. That was where LDA was down on the Kingston foreshore. I believe it is very important to have them on site at Kingston. I have always been a firm believer that Megalo had a right and proper space at Kingston foreshore. There were original plans, as we all know. Their deep, and I think constant, desire is to move into the Fitters Workshop, but that, unfortunately is not to be. We continue to invest in and support Megalo in that work.

Also in regard to Kingston, I made an announcement a week or so ago that there is $300,000 to continue and to progress the work at Kingston to make sure that that does turn into a very vibrant visual arts precinct. That work will allow us to go out and talk with other user groups that have a particular interest and a strong interest in being there.

I am pleased to say that we will continue to invest in Kingston as a key part of relocating Megalo there. The feasibility study, the preliminary planning work, will be undertaken in 2014-15 and will capture planning for a multi-use arts facility, including a permanent, purpose-built space for Megalo. It will also look to options about how other user groups, as I have said, could be there and how we can progress the work. The key plank is that tenants there will be the Glassworks, Megalo and, of course, the bus depot markets, which are a favourite for many Canberrans on the weekend.

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Mr Gentleman.

MR GENTLEMAN: Minister, how will these programs support up-and-coming artists in the ACT?

MS BURCH: I thank Mr Gentleman for his question. Permanent arts hubs, whether it is visual arts at Kingston, music arts at Ainslie or performing arts at Street Theatre, support the whole range and scope of artists within our community, from emerging artists through to those at a higher end of professional practice and skill. It is important that we have these hubs to allow for those different groups. If you reflect on those that are the foundations of the arts hub at Ainslie, groups include Music for Everyone. I popped in to the most recent eisteddfod, to the rock and roll performance that was held at CIT music area. I did note that Music for Everyone was certainly a group who was there.

In addition to Music for Everyone, there are Pro Musica, the Australian National Eisteddfod, the Young Music Society and the Hall Village brass band and Canberra Youth Music. These hubs provide a central point of efficiencies across organisations so that they can mentor, support and nurture each other, and also, more importantly, make sure that our vibrant arts community here in Canberra, at all levels and scope,

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