In theatre, the performance is the tip of a huge iceberg, with so many people working hard backstage to make sure the sound is perfect, props are where they should be, costumes are ready and cast and crew are well fed – there are so many different backstage roles that sometimes don’t get shouted about.
With theatres closed, most of these people aren’t doing their jobs right now but many of them have refused to sit at home twiddling their thumbs! So many fantastic theatre industry professionals have picked up their tools and gone from stitching Shakespearean ruffs to sewing hospital scrubs; from crafting props to making face shields; from rigging up stage mics to sorting out radio communications for NHS staff.
We are so immensely proud of the people in the theatre industry whose thoughts immediately turned to how they could help support frontline workers, here are just some of them:
Nathan Rose, Props Manager at Nottingham Playhouse is using donate theatre materials and making face shields for local doctors surgeries and hospitals.
Chichester Festival Theatre’s caterers Caper & Berry have been serving free hot food to key workers at Queen Alexandra Hospital from their van. The theatre has also partnered with staff at Chichester College to make much-needed scrubs for the NHS, GPs and Care Homes. The theatre’s 12 bed creative accommodation building has been given over to local St Richards hospital for doctors and nurses who, for whatever reason, are unable to go home overnight.
Hull Truck Theatre’s Head of Wardrobe, Sian Thomas, has been making drawstring bags and scrubs for local hospitals.
Sheffield Theatre’s wardrobe team are part of ‘Helping Dress Medics’ group and are sewing scrubs at home.
ENO’s costume department have been making scrubs and they’ve also donated their own supply of gloves and other protective equipment for frontline workers.
Royal Exchange Theatre in Manchester has also joined, ‘Help Dress Medics’. Nikki Meredith, Head of the Royal Exchange’s Wardrobe department said: “Only a week earlier we had been making huge Victorian crinolines for our production of Rockets and Blue Lights and now its green scrubs.”
You can donate to many of the initiatives outlined above, more information here.
If you are a theatre fan and would like to help support those working in the theatre industry but aren’t in a position to donate to theatres directly, consider buying Theatre Tokens. These unique Gift Cards and eGifts have no expiry date, so you can buy now and use when our curtains rise again.
Or, when entering the prize draw below, why not tick to receive Theatre Tokens emails. It costs nothing to join the mailing list, but will help the industry to ensure they can let you know when their doors are open again, which is something we can’t wait to see.
For the avoidance of doubt, this promotion is being run and hosted by Winning Moments t/as Rebecca Garrett Media.