We’re answering some of your burning questions about our Young Producers Scheme.

It’s been a few weeks since we launched our Young Producers Scheme – our programme for people aged 18-24 to get involved with producing the next Compass Festival, and we thought it would be useful to answer some questions you may have. If you’re thinking of applying and your question has not been answered below, email us.


What is Compass Festival? 

Compass Festival happens in Leeds every two years and is a celebration of socially engaged live art in the public realm. Projects take place in non traditional arts settings, like pubs, libraries and neighbourhoods and involve direct interaction with the public. We commission internationally renowned artists and bring unique works to the city that would not otherwise be seen. 


What is a Producer?

Producing means ‘to bring forth’ – and in the arts it’s a role that ensures stuff happens in a way that remains true to the artist’s vision and the practical requirements at hand. 

At Compass, being a producer is about developing a great programme people will respond well to and supporting artists to realise their vision for commissioned projects. It’s about finding solutions, negotiating with all the different people involved, and generally being a constant force pushing the work forwards towards showing it at the festival. 


What will I actually do as a Young Producer? 

During your time with us, you’ll develop an individual work plan, based on your interests and will be paired with specific projects within the programme to work on. Participants will take part in the planning, delivery and evaluation of the festival alongside the festival team including: 

  • Fortnightly masterclasses with festival artists and partners.
  • Monthly one to one mentoring sessions.
  • Monthly workshops from the festival team on subjects such as finance, fundraising, curation, technical management and marketing.
  • Meeting and working with other young producers, forming a peer support network. 
  • Trips to other UK cities, meeting like-minded festival producers, event organisers and artists. 


Can I apply for the scheme? 

Anyone aged 18-24 based in West Yorkshire who is a recent graduate of Higher (university) or Further Education (college) can apply for the Young Producers Scheme. We’re looking for people who are really interested in producing who have some practical or academic experience around arts or performance. 


Can I still apply if I have not graduated from my degree?

Yes, we can accept applications from people who have not yet finished their arts or performance degrees as long as they have some practical experience. 


What do you mean by practical experience?

Producing experience could be anything from working behind the scenes on a school or university performance or working as part of a society, to arts and performance volunteering or even creating your own work outside of your education.  


What’s in it for me? 

Doing the Compass Young Producers Scheme is a unique opportunity to work closely alongside producers, artists and technical staff as part of a small team. Through a hands-on placement, young producers will experience problem solving like no other, working on live commissions, culminating in a 2 week festival, alongside a dedicated festival team. 

Gaining confidence and experience in the creative sector, previous young producers have gone on to create successful careers in the arts including running their own venues, working on international festivals and freelancing for a range of different arts organisations.