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Label: bbc

Tuesday 25th March 2014The BBC Rededicates Itself to the Arts

The BBC is one of the most beloved British institutions, one that has reached hearts and minds of millions of citizens for nearly 100 years. Over the course of that long life, it has occasionally varied in its goals, depending on the view its directorship takes of the current cultural climate and how the BBC fits into that milieu. Naturally, the BBC News and the World Service are what made the name for the corporation in the early days, but as the media landscape changes, the institution is taking steps to ensure that it stays relevant. In a boon for art lovers everywhere, the current Director-General of the BBC, Tony Hall (who also happens to be Baron Hall of Birkenhead), has recently decided that the BBC's role in the art world should be stepped up several notches.

"The arts are for everyone, and from now on BBC Arts will be at the very heart of what we do," Hall said, and drove the point home by appointing several prominent figures in the arts to leadership positions within the BBC, including the director of the prestigious Tate galleries, Sir Nicholas Serota, and the director the National Theatre, Sir Nicholas Hytner.

Nobody can doubt the genuineness of Hall's desire to bring the BBC Arts into the foreground. "I want BBC Arts – and BBC Music – to sit proudly alongside BBC News … We’ll be joining up arts on the BBC like never before – across television, radio and digital. And, we’ll be working more closely with our country’s great artists, performers and cultural institutions," he said, although it remains to be seen how well the corporation will be able to cope in an increasingly digital world. The success of the iPlayer system seems to bode well, but larger organisations have been seen to stumble occasionally when it comes to emphasising digital offerings.

Regardless of their digital fortunes, it speaks well of the BBC that in an era of financial instability and insecurity and government austerity programs, that the arts aren't always getting the short end of the stick. The BBC has the potential to truly reinvigorate the performing arts scene all across the United Kingdom, and has the chance to set an example for other countries and governments around the world to rededicate themselves to creating a rich cultural tapestry.

Posted on March 25th 2014 on 04:43am
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