Designs on the audience: performing arts centres as sites of cosmopolitan citizenship
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Changes in cultural consumption and in modes of governance are prompting performing arts centres (PACs) to take a more proactive role in urban life; they are reconfiguring their internal and external spaces to improve how they engage with their publics and adjacent urban spaces; and they are developing strategies to better manage their cultural and social impacts. This paper draws on qualitative research with Queensland Performing Arts Centre audiences and cites some specific initiatives to test the proposition that in reinventing themselves as multiple-use civic resources, performing arts centres are potentially significant sites of cosmopolitan citizenship. It argues that in addition to the PACs' symbolic functions and the expertise they contribute to public life, they provide linked physical and social spaces that embody and promote the values of diversity and community cohesion.
Sites of Cosmopolitanism: Citizenship, Aesthetics, Culture
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