Saturday, 23 September 2017
Northern Ballet and Phoenix host the China IP Roadshow
Standard YouTube Licence
Ever since Northern Ballet moved to its new studios I have been looking for a chance to introduce it to my colleagues and clients (see Ballet and Intellectual Property - my Excuse for reviewing "Beauty and the Beast" 31 Dec 2011 IP Yorkshire and The Things I do for my Art: Northern Ballet's Breakfast Meeting 23 Sept 2014). The opportunity arose when I was asked by Tom Duke, our IP attaché in Beijing to arrange venues for and chair the China IP Roadshow in Yorkshire.
As Northern Ballet and Phoenix Dance Theatre create more intellectual assets than most in the form of choreography, musical scores, set and costume designs and performances and both have strong links with China I proposed Northern Ballet as the venue for the Leeds event. I was overjoyed when my proposal was accepted.
The event took place in the Boardroom on the top floor on Tuesday 19 Sept between 09:00 and 12:00. Many of Leeds's biggest law firms and patent and trade mark agencies were represented as well as the city's businesses, universities and local authority. I invited two special guests - Sharon Watson Phoenix's artistic director who is chairing Leeds's bid to become the European City of Culture and Tobias Perkins, planning manager of Northern Ballet.
Tom spoke about China and the opportunities for British businesses in all sectors including the creative industries but warned of some of the things that can go wrong. He recommended a number of countermeasures such as registering IP rights, getting contracts drawn up by Chinese lawyers and not leaving your business sense behind at Heathrow. Precautions that business people would take here such as requiring partners to enter non-disclosure agreements before disclosing trade secrets work in exactly the same way in China.
After Tom had answered a few questions I invited Sharon to talk about Phoenix and the City of Culture bid. As you would expect, Sharon spoke passionately on both. Tom congratulated her on her presentation. There were a lot of lawyers and business people who wanted to talk to buttonhole Sharon before she left the boardroom.
Tobias also spoke well. He spoke of two ways in which Northern Ballet raises revenue. One was by performing and the company had made many tours of China over the years. The other is by licensing out to foreign companies and Tobias mentioned that the West Australian Ballet was performing David Nixon's The Great Gatsby in Perth almost as we spoke.
As the boardroom is almost next door to Studio 7 I proudly showed Tom where our 55+ class trains. Before leaving the building he asked to see the Stanley and Audrey Burton Theatre. As Sean was in reception I asked whether it would be possible for Tom and his party to glance inside and I was delighted when he said it was.
Northern Ballet and Phoenix Dance Theatre did me proud as they always do. I shall certainly try to arrange more such events at their premises.