Recipients of Herald Angel and Herald Archangel Awards, the highest honour presented to producers and presenters across the Edinburgh Festivals.
We believe that in a market economy, theatre production is like any other product, which has to be well developed and marketed to attract potential buyers (i.e. receiving theatres, festivals and, most of all, audience). The Edinburgh Festival Fringe is the best and biggest Performing Arts Trade Fair.
Universal Arts was formed in 1998 by Tomek Borkowy and Laura Mackenzie Stuart by amalgamating Arts International Exchange (est. 1994) and Eastern European Media Services (est. 1993). It acts as performing arts promoters, agents, producers and arts related consultants.
The original aim of Universal Arts was to assist international theatre companies to extend their touring reach by showcasing work at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe and marketing it to international theatre and festival programmers. This has since extended to developing a world-wide agency and a production arm of the business.
we create and co-produce medium to large-scale theatre shows and cultural events such as: the Our Europe Welcome Gala at the Kings Theatre, Edinburgh to celebrate European Union enlargement; Opera Galactica - a multi-media operatic musical pastiche of Star Wars aimed at generating new audiences; Venezuela Viva, music and dance extravaganza portraying history and blend of Venezuelan culture from Spanish, Arabic and African through to South American Indian. All were critically acclaimed by the media and audiences alike, Opera Galactica won a prestigious ‘Arts and Business Award’ and Venezuela Viva has been touring worldwide for the last seven years.
From our original area of professional success in Eastern Europe we have now developed our core strengths to encompass the whole of the European market where we have successfully arranged tours for clients throughout Holland, England, Germany, Poland and Scotland. We also have excellent relations with festivals in these countries as well as in Ireland, Italy and Austria. In addition, over the past 7 years, we have placed clients beyond the boundaries of Europe in receiving venues and festivals further afield in Australia, Singapore, Taiwan, Turkey, USA and are beginning to develop circuits in China. By adopting a long-term view in our relationship with potential buyers worldwide, we aim to give a competitive advantage to our clients. Our clients range from large-scale opera to small-scale drama productions. Our contacts have ensured that the touring priorities of each company have been, and continue to be, met.
Born in Warsaw, Poland, he graduated with a Master’s Degree from the State Academy of Theatrical Arts in Krakow. Tomek Borkowy has 40 years of experience as actor, director, producer, theatre manager, agent and drama teacher. Since his first professional appearance in films in 1972 he has worked on literally hundreds of theatre and film projects.
In 1978 he was appointed Artistic Director of the repertory theatre company ‘Young Theatre’ in Krakow. He is household name in Poland thanks to the leading role in “Dom” (Home) the country most popular TV series to date. His Film and TV management includes running Eastern European Media Services UK.
His original agency work focused mainly on Eastern European theatre companies. Recognising the central role which the Edinburgh Festival Fringe continues to play in the promotion of international productions he has worked closely with the Fringe for last 18 years. His impressive track record in presenting innovative international professional work won him a Herald Angel Award. A natural extension of this work was to develop the year-round touring potential of key clients. Developing such links is an on-going priority for Universal Arts in order to maximise the sales advantage to its clients.
From 1998 until 2011 Laura was Managing Director of Universal Arts. In October 2011 she was appointed Portfolio Manger responsible for Theatre in Creative Scotland.
For many years Laura has worked in business and financial administration of the arts. From 1990 – 1998 she was Deputy Director of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, the world’s largest arts festival. Particular areas of responsibility included co-ordinating the needs of over 700 companies coming from all over the world each festival, running the Festival Box-office (turnover of £1.5m in 8 weeks) and running the Sponsorship Department. Membership of the Society’s Management Committee provided 8 years experience in forming a solid foundation for arts business management.
As Managing Director of Universal Arts Laura was also responsible for touring Universal Arts client shows in the UK and internationally. Laura has worked with the Producers of a number of shows which have been launched during the Edinburgh Festival Fringe and which have gone on to reach international acclaim. She also has a broad based knowledge of current industry standard marketing practice and a proven track record in running large departments and controlling and implementing all aspects of current employment.
For more information please contact Universal Arts:
Tel +44 131 478 0195 |