- Organise arts and cultural events and activities
- Option to become an arts officer or manager, do freelance work or become a consultant
- Requires good IT, administration, and organisational skills
Arts administrators make the arts happen. They are the organisers of the arts world. They help to organise events and exhibitions, manage staff, and look after buildings like theatres or museums.
They book venues, promote events, help with staff training, manage budgets and look after petty cash. Their roles varies depending on how large the organisation is. In a larger organisation, they might specialise in an area like accountancy or customer care. Or they might work in a small organisation and be responsible for all the day-to-day running of a venue or festival.
This is a busy, exciting role, ideal for someone who loves the arts but is a great organiser at heart.
- Book venues and artists
- Negotiate sponsorship and funding
- Promote an organisation or event
- Organise security and catering
- Manage budgets and keep records
- Carry out general administration and sell tickets
- Front of house administration
You could work for a range of organisations like theatres, art galleries, community and disability arts, or local authorities. Your working hours could vary and include evenings, late nights and weekends. Most of your work might take place in an office but you're also likely to travel to events and performances or to meet suppliers and funders.
Being an arts administrator would suit someone who is well organised, able to manage multiple tasks, and who has an interest in the arts and culture.
Many arts administrators are graduates but it's not essential. Most subjects are accepted though you may have an advantage with a degree in arts management or arts administration, events and entertainment management, business studies. You could apply for jobs directly without a degree if you've got experience or qualifications in office administration, fundraising or marketing.
You could also get into this kind of role through an intermediate apprenticeship in community arts administration or advanced apprenticeship in arts management.
Relevant experience is valued by employers, as this is a competitive industry. You could get this through volunteering or temporary work like helping with student or community drama productions or concerts; working front of house or at box offices at arts centres, cinemas or theatres; or taking temporary jobs with arts festivals.
Volunteering can help you to develop a network of contacts within the industry.
With experience, you could become a general manager, head of administration, director or chief executive of an arts company or local authority arts division. You could also work freelance, or become a consultant. Specialisation is also possible, for example, in communications, education, events organising, HR, marketing, PR, or programme management.
Jobs and promotion within arts administration are highly sought after and competition is strong. As a result, it may be necessary to relocate or commute further in order to move jobs and gain experience.