Our Vision

Our mission

We present and produce an excellent and diverse programme of performances, events and festivals. We are innovative, inclusive, sustainable and vital to the regeneration of Derby.

Excellence + Innovation + Diversity + Sustainability = Derby LIVE

Our aims

  • To maintain Derby LIVE as a sustainable model for the production and presentation of performances, events and festivals in Derby
  • To provide a broad, balanced and diverse programme of high-quality performing arts for Derby
  • To sustain and develop Derby’s festivals, outdoor events and city centre animation
  • To maximise all commercial activity, sponsorship and development opportunities to support Derby LIVE’s mission
  • To continue to develop Derby LIVE’s venues and facilities and to help create a blueprint for the future of performance spaces in the city
  • To position Derby LIVE as a key element within the regeneration and profile-raising of Derby
  • To continue to develop Derby LIVE’s organisational structure, competencies and capacity to ensure we deliver excellent customer service and value for money.

Our objectives

 We endeavour to meet our aims by achieving the following objectives:

  • By the continuous pursuit of excellence in all areas of our work
  • By ensuring that customers, and the care and consideration which they receive, are at the heart of everything we do
  • By recognising that employees are our most valuable asset and taking the greatest attention and commitment over their recruitment, welfare and development
  • By robustly managing, monitoring and balancing all aspects of finance
  • By consistently attaining the highest standards in marketing, including strategy, mechanisms and materials
  • By systematic and multi-faceted monitoring and evaluation which are central to our learning and development
  • By ensuring that all operations are effective and efficient
  • By working in partnership, so that the total of our achievements is greater than the sum of their parts
  • By consistently delivering the highest production values across all of our programmes and venues, both indoors and outside
  • By continuously programming work which encapsulates and realises our vision, aims and values
  • By regularly communicating with, and advocating to, all relevant stakeholders, partners and personnel
  • By initiating and leading improvements inDerby’s cultural infrastructure and programming
  • By ensuring the highest health and safety standards in everything we do
  • By constantly endeavouring to minimise any negative impact of the work we do on the environment.

Our programme

Excellent, innovative, diverse, sustainable.

To ensure that our strategic objectives are met, a proactive, curatorial approach to programming is taken, both in and outdoors. The programme can be broadly broken down into a number of areas:

Productions (and co-productions)

Involving significant input from Derby LIVE (or a partner) in terms of designing, resourcing and realising the content and form of key elements within the Derby LIVE programme.

In association with

Involving a significant in-kind contribution from Derby LIVE (or a partner) and also generally involves some input from Derby LIVE (or a partner) in terms of designing, resourcing and realising the content and form of the product.

Supported by 

Generally involving a significant level of in-kind, cash, goods and/or services contribution from Derby LIVE (or a partner).

Our presented programme includes both promotions and hires:


Involving Derby LIVE providing the venue/outdoor space and absorbing the hire charge into the financial deal with the agent, promoter or event manager. Promotions generally involve Derby LIVE buying product and accepting an element of risk. Financial deal examples include the payment of a guaranteed fee, first calls and a range of splits on the box office takings.


Involving the payment of a hire fee to Derby LIVE for the use of the venue or outdoor space. Hirers can be commercial promoters, individual artists or local organisations and amateur groups. Reduced hire rates can be offered to support local organisations, charities and performances/events which support DerbyLIVE’s mission.

Excellence in Programming

Excellence is a prerequisite in all that we do. We endeavour to ensure that the programme meets and often exceeds and raises customer expectations. When considering programming possibilities, the following questions are always asked:

Will the product be of high quality?

Where will this product be presented? What is the ‘best-fit’ for this product in artistic, logistical and financial terms?

How will we monitor and evaluate the work to help ensure continuous improvement?

Innovation in Programming

The programme needs to develop new products and new ways of creating. The alternative is stagnation. The programme also needs to develop new and future audiences. When considering programming possibilities, the following questions are always asked:

Will the product help to develop us/our programme/our artists/our participants/our audiences?

Will it enable us to develop a new partnership?

Will it enable us to be involved in a city-wide/regional/national initiative?

Innovation involves risk-taking. How will those risks be managed?

Diversity in Programming

We aim to deliver a diverse, broad and balanced programme, helping the city to achieve a cohesive and complementary cultural offer and reflecting the social and cultural diversity of the city and the region. When considering programming possibilities, the following questions are always asked:

Will the product add to the balance/relevance of the programme?

Will it adversely affect any other product within the city’s cultural offer?

Can it complement any other product within the city’s cultural offer?

Will it increase accessibility to any of our communities and/or the amateur sector?

Sustainability in Programming

We aim to ensure that our programme is sustainable in both economic and environmental terms. It is a major factor in making Derby a desirable place in which to live, work, visit and invest. When considering programming possibilities, the following questions are always asked:

Will the product/deal produce a favourable financial return?

Does the product add value to, while not detracting from, core business activity in the city centre and beyond?

Will it increase footfall, and secondary spend, in the city centre and beyond?

Will it contribute favourably to the city’s profile – locally, regionally, nationally and beyond?

How will any potentially negative effects of the product on the environment be minimised?

These programming questions and considerations can be measured and monitored by utilising the following diamond when considering programming possibilities. The diamond has four points, with each point representing a score against one of the four facets of our programming principles: Quality, Innovation, Diversity and Sustainability. Product scores, of course, must not be considered in isolation but must be balanced against other product scores, across seasons and across years.

So, the scoring for a cross-artform, cross-cultural, multi-media, new artistic commission from a team of top-flight artists might look something like:

Whilst the scoring for our pantomime might look like:

And the scoring for a community charity event might look like:

And thus a programme which fulfils our mission, achieves our priorities, and meets our aims and objectives is consistently delivered and developed.