$80k Victorian government arts grant to help The Cube pack in a full house at Wodonga

PUTTING ON A  SHOW: Angus Johnson ,13, and Holly-Rose Boyer ,13, with the Flying Fruit Fly Circus performing at The Cube last year.
PUTTING ON A SHOW: Angus Johnson ,13, and Holly-Rose Boyer ,13, with the Flying Fruit Fly Circus performing at The Cube last year.

The Cube will be $80,000 better off in 2017 as it strives to learn how to attract the best shows to reach the Wodonga audience.

The venue was selected as one of just five cultural arts organisations in regional Victoria to receive a grant to take part in a state government pilot through Creative Victoria’s “full house” pilot program.

The program was designed for venues to find out more about their audiences, by undertaking research and analysis around who was attending events and what they wanted to see.

Funding will help The Cube develop and implement projects to bring bigger audiences to shows, but Wodonga Council was still working on what they would specifically look like.

The Cube team leader Rebecca Bennell said she was pleased the application had been successful.

“This program and grant will allow us to explore how we can engage with our audiences and determine what they want to see and enjoy at our venue,” she said.

“Having a strong cultural hub within our community leads to a healthy and happy community, by offering both high quality professional entertainment and opportunities for the people to engage and express themselves, in their own backyard.

“The project will kick off from February and will run over several years.”

The Cube also receives regular funding from Creative Victoria, which stated the full house program was to “lead large-scale projects designed to capture the imaginations of diverse groups including families, pre-schoolers and young people”.

Wodonga Council was required to contribute to the cost of the project, alongside the $80,000 in state government funding.

The Cube was already planning a big year for 2017: established favourites such as Sydney and Melbourne comedy festival roadshows and the Class Clowns series will return, plus Melbourne City Ballet will also bring its rendition of A Midsummer Night’s Dream to the venue.

The full house project will examine the The Cube’s audiences, but speaking at the 2017 launch, Wodonga mayor Anna Speedie said families were the council’s target.

“One of our other key aims was to make sure that all of our shows were about family – arts aren’t just about the beautiful singing and dancing and creations that our artists can make; they really bring a vibrancy and a level of complexity,” she said.

“Our hopes and dreams that were we would fill (The Cube) everyday if we could, that our community would embrace it and that we would have fun here, but also get to experience that wonderful culture that often is only associated with our capital cities.”