London theatre from ActDrop

Theatres in London are closed

And while they are .... the actors and creative types who work in them need your support during the present crisis.

The Theatre Support Fund is selling products to raise money for them as well as to support NHS staff, volunteers and patients impacted by Covid-19 across the country.

If you are able, you can help by buying some (or even all!) of the goodies on sale right now.

On offer are t-shirts, mugs, notebooks and badges ...

Products from Theatre Support Fund

Image courtesy Theatre Support Fund

The design brings together the world famous artwork of London's West End musicals - 16 of them in total - to create an image of unity in a time of great uncertainty for the theatre industry.

And money raised is being distributed to: Acting for Others, Fleabag Support Fund and NHS COVID-19 Urgent Appeal.

You'll find more information and the shop where you can buy your mugs and t-shirts here.

From Casa: Commissions

Thursday 21 May 2020

The team at CASA (an arts organisation whose central goal is to facilitate cultural exchanges between Latin America and the UK and organises the CASA Festival) have announced a new initiative - From CASA Commissions.

Commissions - a new initiative from CASA

Image courtesy CASA

The scheme is a new online opportunity, giving up to 4 Latinx artists the chance to develop a new idea, to collaborate with a leading creative practitioner and work with CASA's Artistic Director and Executive Producer.

The package offers ...

⁃ £1000 fee to develop a scratch/work in progress of a new piece of work

⁃ the chance to work with a leading creative practitioner to help develop the piece and the artist's creative practice

⁃ tailored feedback, mentorship and masterclasses with the CASA team.

Applications should be from a person or group who identify as Latinx, work in any form of performance, at ANY stage of their career.

The deadline for applications is 6pm on 25 June and there's more info here.

New Culture Commissioner and Taskforce

Thursday 21 May 2020

Producer Sonia Friedman today (21 May) wrote a passionate article for The Telegraph in which she said "British theatre is on the brink of total collapse".

Ms Friedman stated that the lockdown has already meant £330 million of lost income for theatres and warned that ...

"Without an urgent government rescue package, 70 per cent of our performing arts companies will be out of business before the end of this year.

More than 1,000 theatres around the country will be insolvent and might shut down for good."

You can read the full text of Ms Friedman's article here.

Yesterday, though, saw a glimmer of hope with Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden, appointing Neil Mendoza as the new Commissioner for Cultural Recovery and Renewal.

The Secretary of State also announced last week the creation of the Cultural Renewal task force (focusing on recreation and leisure) and has now set-up an Entertainment and Events Working Group bringing together representatives from around the country to develop advice and guidance on the reopening of cultural venues across the nation.

You can read the full press release here.

National Theatre cancels shows to end August

Thursday 21 May 2020

The National Theatre has cancelled scheduled performances until August 31 2020.

Ticketholders for cancelled performances will be contacted.

There's more information on this page on the National's website.

Amy Ng's Under the Umbrella to get online premiere

Tuesday 19 May 2020

Produced by the Belgrade Theatre in association with Yellow Earth Theatre and Tamasha, Amy Ng's Under the Umbrella will have its online premiere on the Belgrade Theatre's YouTube channel at 7pm on Friday 22 May with streaming available until 29 May 2020.

Here's the trailer ...

Derren Brown's SHOWMAN: new tour dates

Tuesday 19 May 2020

The live tour of Derren Brown Showman - postponed earlier this year due to the coronavirus outbreak - has now been rescheduled for 2021.

Derren Brown's SHOWMAN: tour image for 2021

Image courtesy Derren Brown

Commenting on his first new live show for 6 years, the supremo of showmanship said ...

"We were all ready to open Showman when the tour had to be postponed.

Now, after sitting around in my pants for months I am so, so eager to get this show on the road.

I'm hugely grateful to everyone who bought tickets and then was told they had to wait.

Let's get together and have a hug and a party".

Sadly, there are no dates for a London run, so Derren Brown's many fans in the capital might be a tad disappointed, but here's the line-up for the rest of the country ...

February 22 - 28 - Orchard Theatre, DARTFORD

March 2 - 6 - New Theatre, OXFORD

March 9 - 13 - Victoria Theatre, WOKING

March 23 - 27 - Theatre Royal, PLYMOUTH

March 30 - April 3 - His Majesty's Theatre, ABERDEEN

April 13 - 17 - Empire Theatre, SUNDERLAND

April 20 - 24 - New Theatre, HULL

April 27 - May 1 - King's Theatre, GLASGOW

May 4 - 8 - Marlowe Theatre, CANTERBURY

May 25 - 29 - Grand Theatre, LEEDS

June 1 - June 5 - Pavilion, BOURNEMOUTH

June 6 - 19 - The Lowry, SALFORD QUAYS

June 22 - 26 - Grand Theatre, WOLVERHAMPTON

June 29 - July 3 - Theatre Royal, NORWICH

July 6 - 10 - Milton Keynes Theatre, MILTON KEYNES

July 13 - 17 - Cliffs Pavilion, SOUTHEND

You can book tickets here or via the websites of theatres where the tour will visit.

Ridiculusmus Virtual Trilogy

Tuesday 19 May 2020

Humour is almost an absolute necessity to help us through the current situation we're all facing - and here's something that might offer that in spades.

Ridiculusmus Virtual Trilogy online

Image courtesy Ridiculusmus

It comes in the form of screenings of an online trilogy from the socially engaged work of one of Britain's flagship comedy theatre companies, Ridiculusmus, and is backed-up with expert talks and an opportunity for discussion.

The sessions on offer are as follows:

Friday 22nd May, 2pm - 3:30pm

Session 1: The Eradication Of Schizophrenia In Western Lapland

Saturday 23rd May, 2pm - 3:30pm

Session 2: Give Me Your Love

Sunday 24th May, 2pm - 3:30pm

Session 3: Die! Die! Die! Old People Die!

The trilogy is being screened via the University of Salford's Collaborate platform.

You only need to purchase one ticket to gain access to all three sessions, but booking is essential.

Tickets cover all three elements with a completely free option and others with various donations up to £15.

Book here.

What's happening at ... Jermyn Street Theatre?

Tuesday 19 May 2020

Jermyn Street Theatre gets support from Arts Council England and announces a series of new online projects.

Read more ...


Monday 18 May 2020

Fancy a bit of vocal tuning to give your singing a lift?

Then you might want to watch some videos with the West End's top musical directors who reveal their tips and tricks for getting your singing up to scratch.

Playlist here on the Official London Theatre YouTube channel.

National Theatre at Home: A Streetcar Named Desire

Monday 18 May 2020

Screening FREE this week - from 21 to 28 May - National Theatre At Home brings you A Streetcar Named Desire, directed by Benedict Andrews, which was filmed live on stage at London's Young Vic theatre by National Theatre Live in 2014.

It's a bit of a marathon session with a running time a touch short of the 3 and a half hour mark and stars Gillian Anderson, Vanessa Kirby and Ben Foster.

Watch the show here.

National Theatre at Home: A Streetcar Named Desire - free screening

Image courtesy National Theatre

It Is Easy To Be Dead - from the Finborough Theatre

Monday 18 May 2020

The 2016 Olivier Award nominated production of It Is Easy To Be Dead is available to watch online for FREE until 7 July 2020.

And there's more information about this critically acclaimed production on the Finborough's website.

It Is Easy To Be Dead - free to watch online from the Finborough Theatre

Image courtesy Finborough Theatre

More news ...

All our longer news items are here - and you can catch-up with shorter news stories here.

ActDrop recommends ...

Buy tickets for The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time at the Troubadour Wembley Park Theatre