• Jack Bentinck

Behind the curtain: The thrill of starting your own festival

Updated: Mar 29, 2018

How did three young people who chose not to go to university end up running one of the most innovative cross-artform festivals in Cambridge?

It was the same for all three of them. A pleasant day, a dusty room, a smiling careers advisor. And only two post-18 options: university or drama school. UCAS points or hellish auditions. £9,000 a year fees or £9,000 a year fees.

And yet, a few years later, the three men behind Fusion Theatre Festival – Finn Morrell, 22, Jack Bentinck, 21, and Eden Harbud, 20 – found themselves on a stage in the middle of Cambridge’s largest venue, flanked by a jazz band, addressing a crowd that had stayed for the whole 12 hours of their cross-artform festival. Not one of them had gone to uni. Not one had chosen drama school. But their Arts Council-funded, major arts centre-supported festival had been attended by over 350 people, had smashed their ticket targets, and had positioned the three of them as a healthy antidote to sweeping education reforms. Fusion had promoted young, local talent, cost less than the price of a normal theatre show, and been an all-round good time.

The question, as ever, was how?

(Article by Christy Romer, Arts Professional) Read full article here: