What we do

The Association of Performing Arts Collections (APAC) is the membership organisation for professionals, specialists, and other individuals working with or interested in performing arts heritage in the United Kingdom and Ireland.

Founded in 1979 as the Theatre Information Group London, APAC became the UK’s Subject Specialist Network for performing arts in 2005. In 2018, APAC became a registered charity and an Affiliate Group of the Archives & Records Association of the UK and Ireland (ARA). APAC offers joint membership with SIBMAS, the International Association of Libraries, Museums, Archives, and Documentation Centres of the Performing Arts.

Our members are collectively responsible for most of the UK’s performing arts heritage and include:

  • public museums, libraries, and archives
  • archives of theatres and companies
  • college and university archives and libraries
  • performing arts organisations
  • interested individuals (such as researchers, students, family historians, and subject enthusiasts)

Our vision

APAC’s vision is to be recognised as the leading membership body for the performing arts heritage community in the UK and Ireland, giving members a voice and inspiring the widest possible participation in the enrichment of all performing arts heritage collections.

APAC works towards these main objectives:

  • To advance the performing arts heritage community in the UK and Ireland and advocate the widest possible engagement in performing arts heritage collections by the general public
  • To promote the value of its members’ collections and increasing public awareness of the need to preserve such collections for the future
  • To provide a forum for the exchange and dissemination of information, expertise and best practice in performing arts collections and heritage organisations in the UK and Ireland
  • To enable collaboration between members and non-members by assisting with the development of skills in documenting and promoting the performing arts to enable greater access to all potential users


APAC offers events for members and non-members on a wide range of topics related to performing arts heritage. Past events have focused on areas as diverse as partnerships, collection users, volunteers, costumes, photographs, oral history, and audio-visual materials. We share our knowledge through event reports and encourage best practice by creating resources.

Our regular members’ meetings feature tours and guest speakers and provide an opportunity for members to discuss issues, share ideas, and exchange knowledge.  APAC also convenes working groups on topics of interest (for example, digital preservation) and facilitates collaborative projects. 

APAC’s email discussion forum allows members to seek advice, share best practice, publicise activities, pass on enquiries, and advertise vacancies. Members can also take advantage of APAC’s social media platforms to broaden the reach of their work.


View forthcoming events
More about the Digital Preservation Working Group