When the Arden Performance Edition of Othello arrived recently from Bloomsbury (Methuen Drama) the friend who was staying with me was incredulous. “Surely they don’t think you need a copy of Othello at this stage?” she said.
The message of course – and, thank goodness, most companies are already well aware of it – is that if you want your show reviewed, both this one and the ones you’ll produce in the future, then you need to treat critics with basic courtesy. “If you prick us do we not bleed?”
Shakespeare’s plays really are uniquely life changing and if this collaboration between PQA and SSF means that more young people will have access to their power then that can only be a Very Good Thing.
It all feels to me a bit manic and contrived – a sort of industrial over compensation for several centuries of doing plays according to the conventions of the social period in which they were written. I also sense some vying with each other to see who can come up with the most unlikely bit of gender-blind casting.
Last week I revisited two examples of theatre changing the lives of young people. Everyone in this industry – and those who directly or indirectly manage funding for such organisations – really should get into these places to marvel at what theatre can achieve.
I’ve written about audition fees many times before and make absolutely no apology for doing so again. I shall keep relentlessly banging this drum until something changes.
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The Broadway Theatre, Catford is a fabulous building and I’d like to see it become an integral part of people’s lives as it was for me when I was a Lewisham child.
Professional and Career Development Loans were a lifeline for students like these. Now that such loans have gone many of them will simply not be able to pursue the career they want – irrespective of how talented they are. There are a few scholarships about but “few” is the operative word.
Last week I attended the 2018 Theatre Book Prize award ceremony. From a shortlist of five titles, Nicholas Hytner won with Balancing Acts (published by Jonathan Cape) – and the ever-engaging Rory Kinnear was there to make the happy announcement.
This is a blog in praise of pit bands – all those hardworking talented musicians who lurk mostly out of sight in orchestra pits or are hidden away behind a curtain somewhere upstage.
I write a lot about the performing arts I watch other people engaging in. Last week, for a change, it was my turn. I went to Benslow Music in Hitchin for three days – for the sixth or seventh time and immersed myself in string quartets for three days. It was my birthday on the […]
The post Playing for pleasure appeared first on Susan Elkin.
Attending the first show of 2018 made me wonder, not for the first time, why we mad Brits persist in doing outdoor theatre. This is not Verona, Seville or Avignon, after all.
If you have only 30 places to offer on a massively oversubscribed acting or musical theatre course then you must award them to the thirty applicants who have the potential to be industry-ready in three years.
The thing is this: If I knew that many people in the performing arts industries are hostile towards, or despairing about (or both) what they see as the government’s dismissal of the arts in education, then why didn’t Christine Quinn, West Midlands Regional Schools Commissioner?
The purpose of my visit was very specific to the Watermill Theatre. The forthcoming production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream directed by Paul Hart, and building on the success of last year’s Twelfth Night, is to have integrated signing at some performances.
No one should have to pay for the “privilege” of applying for any sort of course. Charging audition fees is such an exploitative disgrace that I can see no reason why it shouldn’t be made illegal.
How do we get the word out – really out – about fringe theatre in general and pub theatres in particular. There’s cutting-edge work going on all the time at, for example, the Finborough or Theatre 503, which is based in The Latchmere in Battersea.
Disappearing with a travelling troupe used to be the only way to learn the tricks of the circus trade if you weren’t born into an established circus family. Over the last 50 years, however, that has been changing with an ever-increasing number of clubs, schools and training centres appearing around the world.
It’s unusual these days to sit in the theatre for more than a few minutes without the darkness and your concentration being disturbed by someone nearby flashing a mobile phone on. It’s infuriating, offensive and bloody rude to the performers. It’s only a notch or two less obnoxious than letting the device ring.
I used to review large numbers of graduating student showcases for The Stage. Then last year an editorial policy decision was made at the Stage not to cover them any more. So I didn’t go to a single one in 2017. Then withdrawal symptoms set in.