BuskinCity is an idea created in 2014 by Thorsten Andreassen, Festival Director of Stockholm Street Festival and Ulf Andersson- Festival Director of International Street Theatre Festival in Halmstad. Both of them have a long experience of street theatre and street performing in public spaces for over 30 years.
Ulf A. and Thorsten A. are Board members of Manegen - Federation for Circus, Variety and Street Performing in Sweden.
They are members of Circostrada - the most important European network for contemporary circus and street art. Likewise as FACE - Fresh Art Coalition Europe.
BuskinCity is a direct collaboration with municipalities and business associations in different cities around the world. This is a pilot project to be developed over three years.
We start small to make the concept of BuskinCity sustainable, with a goal to grow with a few countries and 5 - 10 cities per year after an initial evaluation period.
The reason why is simple. The concept of BuskinCity creates jobs and income for a very special kind of artist -an artist who usually isn’t working the theatres but is nomadic and “untied” in character. It also creates culture in city centres without putting the burden of finance on the city (through citizens) or other actors. Buskin’ is one of the great ways to provide art and street life that is not motivated by commercial actors, but rather it’s the artists themselves who set the terms. Furthermore, it’s a borderless community of artists which means that one day you can have a Swedish small-town juggler, and the next you’ll have Italian pair-acrobats.
It’s a great complement to the city and as we’ve learnt in both Stockholm and Halmstad, the audience loves it. The craft and the artform (because it is both) is designed to appeal to the audience (it’s voluntary to pay, after all) and the artists have no obligations to funders or venues - meaning that they are very free when it comes expressing themselves.
Buskin’ as a phenomena is worth supporting and with the system we are co-developing with the municipalities, it will be easier and faster for public bodies to facilitate “free” art in the city centres. And easier for artists to be able to provide it.