My Theatre Matters! campaign

on 15 March 2013. Posted in Theatre

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my theatre matters

A major campaign, My Theatre Matters!, has been launched by Equity, The Stage and the Theatrical Management Association. The campaign has grown out of concern about the threats to funding of many theatres across the UK, particularly from local government. Sheffield Theatre, for one, is facing a council cut of £100,000, only weeks after being names regional theatre of the year at the Stage 100 Awards.

The campaign aims to encourage theatres to mobilise their audiences to voice their support for their local venue and tell their own stories about why their theatre matters to them. Harnessed into a national campaign, these local voices can give real weight to the argument in support of public funding for theatre. Actors will be delivering curtain call speeches in theatres asking for support from audiences and the campaign will receive prominent and branded coverage throughout the year and will be spreading the word through social media and a dedicated website.

Latest signatories to the campaign include: Hugh Bonneville (Twenty Twelve, Downton Abbey); Kevin McKidd (Trainspotting), who with 51 Moray-based artists and arts professionals has signed an open letter to Moray Council, arguing for a rethink of the recently announced 100% cut to its arts budget; and David Haig (The Madness of George III).

David Edgar, president of the Writers' Guild, said of the campaign: 'Regional British theatre was one of the great success stories of the 2000s – particularly in its production of new plays. There’s now a real prospect of all that going to waste. Playwrights join directors, actors and other theatre-makers in defence of the network of local and regional companies which is at the heart of Britain’s great theatre achievement.'

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