Incubating young talent

A NEW business incubator at Leederville’s YMCA HQ aims to remove one of the barriers for young people getting into performance and art.

HQ manager Andrew Rigg told the Voice a couple of staff came up with the idea about two years ago after noticing the large number of incubators popping up around Perth were still out of reach for the creative youngsters they were dealing with.

An innovation grant from head office allowed the centre to go ahead with the plan, with YCollaborate due to be launched on next Thursday (July 6).

Mr Rigg says they’ve already got a few prospective tenants keen to use the performance space, including one keen soul trying to turn a love of slam poetry into a business.

• Brad Robbins and Yvonne Law talk business at HQ’s new incubator YCollaborate. Photo supplied

“YCollaborate offers young people the opportunity to plug into a supportive environment that is geared towards creative industries and to capitalise on the experience of established industry professionals,” Mr Rigg said.

“Talent isn’t all you need to get ahead in the arts and performance sector, young people also need to understand the business back-end of the craft—that’s where YCollaborate comes into it.”

As a teaser for this Thursday’s launch, HQ is stumping up a $1000 cash prize, plus a year’s free access to YCollaborate and its business support for one youngster.

Pitch Please is open to young people between 17 and 25 years old with a business idea, and it will be judged by a panel of creative professionals including former WA young person of the year Rhys Williams.

Competition finalists will be matched with an industry mentor to further develop a five-minute pitch on their business idea, which they’ll deliver at the finals in August.

by STEVE GRANT

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