Aspiring theatre-makers get to have a sneak peek at Life Backstage to find out more about the people, skills and talent that go into each performance. If you're a professional theatre-maker you can also sign up to be an ambassador to make a difference and connect with a local school to share your knowledge and experience.
Inspiring the Future of Theatre is a partnership between Society of London Theatre (SOLT), UK Theatre and Inspiring the Future (part of the charity Education and Employers), aiming to nurture new generations of theatre-makers and audiences from school age, and connecting schools with their local theatres and industry professionals to help achieve this. The initiative resulted from SOLT and UK Theatre’s Workforce Review, which showed the need to build a sustainable, resilient and globally competitive theatre workforce for the future representing the UK’s diverse population, with particular emphasis on off-stage roles.
Since the campaign was announced in April 2018, nearly 800 theatre industry professionals – from artistic directors, costume cutters and lighting designers to producers and props masters – have signed up to visit a school and introduce children to a diverse range of theatrical jobs.
Some notable ambassadors so far include James Graham, playwright; Prema Mehta, freelance lighting designer; Sharon D. Clarke, actor and singer; Laurence Miller, Commercial Director of Nimax Theatres; Kate Pakenham, Executive Producer at Donmar Warehouse; Caroline Dyott, Producer at Sheffield Theatres; Sita McIntosh, Chief Executive of What’s On Stage; Jess Glaisher, Senior Lighting Technician at The Young Vic; Gary Lloyd, director and choreographer; Kenny Wax, producer and SOLT President; Livia Nagy, Sound and Video Technician at the National Theatre; Susie McKenna, Associate Director of Hackney Empire; Tarek Iskander, Interim Director of Theatre at Arts Council England; and Michèle Taylor, Director for Change at Ramps on the Moon.
Inspiring the Future of Theatre was launched on 11 July, when 150 Year 6 pupils from three Scarborough primary schools came together for a morning of activities, panel sessions and discussions led by staff from the nearby Stephen Joseph Theatre, Hull Truck Theatre, Beach Hut Theatre, Northern Ballet and Qdos Entertainment. This was the first of 15 flagship events connecting theatres and schools, focusing on areas of the UK prioritised for social mobility and cultural development.
Theatre professionals who would like to sign up to be an Inspiring the Future of Theatre ambassador can visit the Inspiring the Future website. Theatres and arts organisations are also able to register their interest in getting involved and working with their local schools, via the website.
See who's behind the campaign and check them out on Twitter too:
This is a campaign we at Voice love. UK Theatre have also generously paid us to feature some advertising in our ad spaces.