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Samuel West
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Does Culture Matter? Speech at the Association of British Orchestras fringe meeting, Conservative Party Conference, Birmingham Town Hall, 29th September 2014

Does Culture Matter?

Speech at the Association of British Orchestras fringe meeting,

Conservative Party Conference, Birmingham Town Hall, 29th September 2014

Asked to prove the value of culture, I sometimes do a sneaky inversion. Imagine a world without it. Imagine throwing a switch which at a stroke…


Posted on September 29, 2014 at 17:00

Welcoming Sajid Javid, the new Culture Minister

Congratulations to Sajid Javid and good luck in the new job. I look forward to buying him a cup of tea and seeing him at lots of the UK’s brilliant cultural events. And I hope he'll forgive a few thoughts on what might lie ahead.

Someone who’s come from the Treasury will understand how much the tiny fraction of our public spending invested in the arts does for the country, both here and internationally.  We’re one of the fastest growing and most successful sectors of the UK economy,…


Posted on April 9, 2014 at 17:00

My Theatre Matters: article in The Morning Star, 29th October 2013

     “In order correctly to define art, it is necessary, first of all, to cease to consider it as a means to pleasure and to consider it as one of the conditions of human life. “ TOLSTOY, What is Art? - translated Aylmer Maude.

Where does theatre belong, in a healthy society? It’s one of the last great unmediated experiences - it’s not edited, or packaged, or spun. It allows children to stare. It allows adults to believe (or not).  Surely theatre shouldn’t…


Posted on November 2, 2013 at 15:11

This, at last, is naked: the Conservatives see culture as commodity.

A postscript was added on 6 May 2013.


Maria Miller yesterday gave her maiden speech as Culture Secretary. The main thrust was this: that the arts must play their part in our economic recovery by proving their profitability. 

At first glance the speech seems encouraging, but look closer and it's impossible not…


Posted on April 25, 2013 at 12:30

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At 14:49 on August 9, 2012, Sotia Teneh said…

Good day,                        
How is everything with you, I picked interest on you, after going through your short profile and deemed it necessary to write you immediately. I have something very vital to diclose to you, but I found it difficult to express myself here, since it's a public site.Could you please get back to me My E-mail address ( for the full details. Have a nice day.
Sotia Teneh.

At 17:47 on February 14, 2011, sandra Munoz Alvarez said…

Hello Sam, I was really moved by your speech at the York Garden Library. Have you seen the video I made for the library. I am a resident of the estate and my son and I are fervent users of the library so i really want to fight to save it. I took the initiative to interview local people in order to give them a voice.

you can see the video here:

They might show the video at the council meeting on the 28th before the councellor vote. I hope it will change the mind of few of them if they have a heart. The little boy at the beginning and at the end of the long version is my little one and he loves his library very much.

Thanks again for a great speech.
At 23:38 on November 4, 2010, Louise Barrett said…
hi there Sam, I wanted to say a massive thank you to you for coming to Somerset for the 'gathering' or meant sooo much to have someone who can get right in there with the media...thank you thank you x

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