A Year at The Barbican (The Barbican Centre, 2022/23)

The Barbican Centre is the largest performing arts centre in Europe. Based in London’s Barbican Estate, this famous work of Brutalist architecture plays host to the London Symphony Orchestra and the Royal Shakespeare Company, among other luminaries. It houses multiple concert halls, cinemas, theatres, restaurants, a library, and an art gallery.

The Barbican’s 2022/23 annual report takes the form of a short video, linked to a minimalist, single page text document (with a linked, expanded financials section).

The web page for the report opens with the video and beneath it unscrolls the report. The text-based part of the report is divided into four sections that the reader can jump to, or be taken to in sequence via an infinite-scroll function. Coupled with plenty of negative space and the clean lines of the Barbican’s signature Futura typeface, all of this leads to a beautifully simple and clean viewing experience.

The five-minute video works as an introduction to the facilities at the Centre, as well as its 2022/23 performances. It is based on very short interviews with five members of the Barbican team, who speak about the diversity of shows as well as the many facilities on offer. The interviews are light, fast, and friendly, playing very much the performing arts aspect of the Centre rather than a discussion of the year’s financials. The result is something that feels more like a short, punchy TV segment about London’s thriving arts and culture rather than an annual report. It’s a great way to structure a report and to ensure stakeholders engage with your content.

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