The Japan Foundation
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VTi (Vlaams Theater Instituut)
VTi Vlaams Theater Instituut
(Institute for the Performing Arts in Flanders)

Sainctelettesquare 19
B-1000 Brussels
Phone: +32-(0)2-201-09-06
Fax: +32-(0)2-203-02-05
info [a]
Arts Organization of the Month Arts Organization of the Month
Jan. 31, 2014
VTi (Vlaams Theater Instituut) (Institute for the Performing Arts in Flanders) 
The Institute for the Performing Arts in Flanders (Vlaams Theater Insituut, hereafter “VTi”) is a documentation and research center established for the purpose of promoting the development of performing arts and strengthening the social environment and infrastructure surrounding it in the Flanders (Dutch-speaking) region of Belgium. Its predecessor is the Flanders Theater Circuit (VTC: Vlaams Theater Circuit) founded as a federation of arts centers of the Flanders region with the primary aim of inviting foreign works and promoting collaborative creation. Recognizing the need for an interface organization to engage in performing arts systems research, propose culture policy and network support, a group of performing arts professionals with a unique combination of the skills as creative artists, organizers and critics, came together in 1987 to establish VTi as a non-profit organization. The first director was Guido Minne, the founder of the STUK arts center of Leuven, and under his direction the foundations of VTi’s as a documentation and research organization with platform functions were established. The organization’s offices are located in the Kaaitheater in the Belgian capital of Brussels.
As a documentation and research center for the performing arts of the Flanders region, VTi serves the following functions.
1) Documentation center for the performing arts
2) Forum for expertise and vision development in a varied and international Flanders
3) Critical interface between creative artists, the public and policy
4) Junction in a cross-sector network that transgresses sectors (not restricted to performing arts)
As a documentation center, VTi collects materials concerning the performing arts in the Flanders region. The library set up in the VTi office has materials about performing arts companies, books and journals concerning the performing arts, some 7,000 scripts, over 6,000 hours of video recordings of performances, all of which can be viewed for free. As Web resources, there is an online database consisting of detailed information for supply about companies in the Flanders region and Brussels and their related works. VTi also publishes its own quarterly magazine Courant and books about the trends in the performing arts of the Flanders region (also available online).
In the area of artist support, VTi offers its “Toolkit/First Aid” providing information and consultation for artists of various careers. Emerging companies are offered practical advice about performance venues, rehearsal studio space, grants, copyrights and tax, etc. Also, to help them become established themselves as independent artists, necessary information is provided and workshops organized. Online offerings include information about arts/culture policies and programs not only for the Flanders region but for all of Belgium, Europe and local governments is provided, along with information about employment opportunities and how to apply for workshops and the like.
Among the representative projects VTi has initiated until now are the research project Archipel concerning the necessity of building the infrastructure for digital archives; and creating SPACE (Supporting Performing Arts Circulation in Europe) in collaboration with the national cultural institutions in ten European countries as a platform for promoting distribution of performing arts. In the SPACE project a pilot program for arts mobility was run for three years beginning in 2008 and a policy proposal was then submitted to the European Commission.