Museums Showoff

Katherine Curran delivers her set in verse. Photo: Rachel Souhami

Katherine Curran from the Centre for Sustainable Heritage delivers her set in verse. Photo: Rachel Souhami

Museums Showoff is a cabaret-style event where people who work in and with museums can exchange ideas and forge new alliances. There is a huge diversity of roles and disciplines within museums and allied professions, and yet little opportunity for people to come together on an equal footing. Museums Showoff provides a place for that to happen in a relaxed, informal environment.

Participants have included museum directors, students, curators, conservators, volunteers, funders, designers, academics, visitors and security specialists, to name but a few. Their sets have been on topics as diverse as architecture in the V&A to plastics conservation, from what visitors really think about exhibitions to the record of past ministers for the arts. Many of the sets are informal talks, but we have also had poetry, plays, songs and dance.

I work in partnership with compère Steve Cross. Shows are every 6-8 weeks in London, with audiences averaging 80 people per night. Museums Showoff has toured to other cities in the UK, including Manchester, Bristol, Edinburgh and Norwich. There are franchises in Toronto, Boston, Rio de Janeiro and Buenos Aires, with interest from Copenhagen and Paris.

Details of future shows and tickets can be found on the Museums Showoff website:

Articles about Museums Showoff have been published in The Guardian and Gasholder.

Selected images (roll over for caption, click to enlarge):

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