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Practicalities of re-opening in Autumn 2020 - or thereafter?

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45 minutes ago, Richard LH said:

Yes this would work...let's all disguise ourselves as plants!


excellent plan!    
 

my hair is so long now I can attach all sorts of trailing plants to it 🤣

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In my region most of the theatres are fairly small and do not have 'live' events every night of the week/month/year. They have already done a mix of live events, screenings of live NT  and ballet productions and cinema films for a number of years. Its not a model that would work for all theatres but may be the way forward for some.

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Posted (edited)
44 minutes ago, Balletfanp said:

 

I was in attendance in a meeting with leading ACE reps yesterday - about which I will say nothing.  That said I think the word 'reportedly' - as employed in the article linked - looms large.  

 

More practical perhaps ---- from an article in The Stage: - 

 

English National Opera is planning a socially distanced season of "stripped-back" productions, with every other row empty and audiences spaced with a two-seat gap between them .... Opera-goers will be asked to wear masks and gloves for the duration of their visit to the London Coliseum and will arrive at staggered times through an increased number of entrances, Murphy said.

 

 

 

Edited by Bruce Wall

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Posted (edited)

Perhaps some here might like to add their face/voice (if you have not already done so, of course) ...

 

The volunteer-led Public Campaign for the Arts is encouraging people across the UK to submit short videos to its website about how much the arts mean to them and to write to their MPs.

Edited by Bruce Wall

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Bruce Wall said:

 

 Opera-goers will be asked to wear masks and gloves for the duration of their visit to the London Coliseum and will arrive at staggered times through an increased number of entrances, Murphy said.

 

 

"Through an increased number of entrances". Mmmmh....! Possible if the sides are opened up, although patrons would need to be able to manage significant flights of stairs wherever they were heading.

In normal use, the Coli's entrance is an absolute nightmare, made worse by the re-positioning of the Box Office and its queues in the main foyer.

 

Edited to add that I have now written to my MP. It did not take me long. I do hope that everyone else will do the same ahead of tomorrow's debate.

 

 

Edited by capybara
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19 minutes ago, capybara said:

 

"Through an increased number of entrances". Mmmmh....! Possible if the sides are opened up, although patrons would need to be able to manage significant flights of stairs wherever they were heading.


The lift provision at the Coliseum is so poor that nearly everyone who normally sits in the upper tiers would see that as nothing new.

 

(The side entrances would actually mean fewer steps to climb for the balcony, thinking about it, as they are lower than the normal entrances, which are right at the top.)

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1 hour ago, Lizbie1 said:


The lift provision at the Coliseum is so poor that nearly everyone who normally sits in the upper tiers would see that as nothing new.

 

(The side entrances would actually mean fewer steps to climb for the balcony, thinking about it, as they are lower than the normal entrances, which are right at the top.)

 

It doesn't feel as if people normally use the stairs when one is queueing for the lift!!!!!!!

Good point about there being fewer steps if one is at the front of the Balcony or Upper Circle.

 

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In case of Japan, the doors are slowly opening. 

 

From June 12th for 8 days, a small performance by Saburo Teshigawara (who was nominated for the NDA this year as best modern male dancer) was held at his own venue in Tokyo, restricting the audience to 30 (half the usual) and with many safety measures. I was very happy to see a live performance first time in 2 and a half months. 

Some orchestras are starting to have concerts this week, mostly with restriction to 100 members in the audience for a 2000 seat venue and change of program.

 

And the National Ballet of Japan will have a world premiere of "Ryuguu The Turtle Princess" (based on a Japanese folk tale) which is a contemporary ballet for children in July, with reduced capacity. The audience will have to have an empty seat on both sides.  It will be the first performance for the company since their Manon was cut short in the end of February. I am looking forward to take my son for that.

https://www.nntt.jac.go.jp/english/news/all/notice-20200624.html

https://www.nntt.jac.go.jp/english/productions/ballet/ballet-for-children-the-turtle-princess.html

 

 

 

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Do you know how they're going to manage financially with such a low ticket percentage, Naomi?

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German theatres and concert halls are re-opening slowly, for very reduced audiences, but everywhere in the country. Even before the cinemas. It's easier here because they are funded by the state - staff and artists were still paid during the closure. It would be very hard to get rid of whole theatres and orchestras, they have reliable contracts.

 

The ballet company at Munich intends to show Swan Lake and Giselle in September. 

 

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I can't tell you how lucky you are in Germany to have the arts decently funded, Angela.  I just hope our Government will step up and meet its responsibilities: after all, it's largely its insistence on our arts organisations becoming so self-sufficient and largely independent of funding which has led to them being in this parlous state when forced to shut down.  If it boils down to a question of supporting them through this period or letting them suffer the hit, with the attendant unemployment, knock-on effect on the economy and lack of tax income, I know which I would choose :(

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2 hours ago, alison said:

I can't tell you how lucky you are in Germany to have the arts decently funded, Angela.  I just hope our Government will step up and meet its responsibilities: after all, it's largely its insistence on our arts organisations becoming so self-sufficient and largely independent of funding which has led to them being in this parlous state when forced to shut down.  If it boils down to a question of supporting them through this period or letting them suffer the hit, with the attendant unemployment, knock-on effect on the economy and lack of tax income, I know which I would choose :(

 

There is, of course, the fact that the government, desperate in its bid to suck up to the electorate, will happily cut off its nose rather than appear to make any sort of concession to what it sees as 'elitism'. Until as many children want to become musicians and dancers as footballers and reality TV stars, I fear that this will not change. Like so much else, education has to be the key. The 'woke' message was peddled in our schools and hit a wider consciousness remarkably quickly. Let's have the same, please, for the arts which, sadly, continue to be maligned, ridiculed or plain misunderstood.

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I can't tell you how sad I am to read all those articles about the British theatres, Alison - I always thought the London theatre scene is absolutely unique in the world and I love to see ten performances in five days - ballets, plays, musical theatre, everything.

I'm sure we will see theatres dying here in Germany too, the smaller venues, the private venues. The financial crisis is only just beginning.

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6 hours ago, alison said:

Do you know how they're going to manage financially with such a low ticket percentage, Naomi?

 

Financially they are not managing at all. The New National Theatre in Japan is consisted of the National Ballet, the Opera (they do not have an orchestra of their own and only the choir are the members) and the Theatre division (which is all guests except the AD and technical staff) as well at the Ballet, Theatre and Opera Academy. All performances were halted for 4 months. Japan is somewhat similar to UK, not enough state funding (they do have a small funding) as Japan's government culture budget is one of the smallest in all major countries.  There are no art council here. The income relies heavily on ticket sales and also some corporate philanthropy funds as well as private donors. (But donation is not common here, not much people here chose donation instead of refunds this time, and the theatre lost millions in Pounds ) 

 

The National Ballet of Japan holds an annual Ballet for Children series, with very cheap tickets and many of the tickets are sold to schools. This performance receives more public funding than others, so they could afford this. But I doubt they will get any profit from this performance, because of the low ticket percentage. 

 

And National Ballet of Japan was supposed to open the 2020/21 season with a new production of Peter Wright's Swan Lake as Miyako Yoshida is taking over the leadership, but it became impossible because there are not enough rehearsal time and the repetitors can not enter the country. So Don Quixote will open the season in late October, again with reduced capacity. All subscriptions were cancelled so we had our tickets refunded and have to purchase single tickets. 

 

There are more serious situation with the Orchestras here,  many of the orchestras are in the brink of closing down, so they are now slowly starting to have performances with altered programs and reduced capacities. There are some emergency funds from the Ministry of Culture but certainly not enough.

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That sounds even more depressing than the UK situation :( 

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From Today's Stage ..

 

Chairs of theatres and arts organisations from across the UK have signed an open letter urging people to lobby their MPs for support to prevent the sector collapsing, warning “tens of thousands of artistic careers” are at risk.

 

People who have signed the letter include Margaret Hodge, chair of Theatre Royal Stratford East, English National Opera chair Harry Brunjes, and Damon Buffini, chair of the National Theatre .... 

 

“It’s not only the West End, the annual pantomime, world-class musicals, dance, opera and Shakespeare – it’s the creative and outreach work happening across the country in our diverse communities, outdoors, in pop-up spaces, at festivals and online,” the letter warns, adding that theatre can play a critical role, “inside and outside the sector, in challenging, educating and informing”.

 

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Posted (edited)

This FIVE STEP ROAD MAP TO RE-OPENING THEATRES has JUST been released by the Culture Secretary .... That as the Curve Theatre in Leicester has just cancelled its 2020 Xmas Show ... That will hurt ... mightily ... and the Theatres Trust announces that half of the Charity run venues - which includes most of your small and mid-scale venues - could go bust inside three months ... Internationally, the Broadway League has instructed producers with productions on the schedule to open on the 'Great White Way' (will have to do something now about that idiom surely) in 2020 to push them into next year - that is if they dare - (i.e., potentially losing their theatre) ... The much touted (and virtually sold out) revival of The Music Man with Hugh Jackman has now moved it's opening from November 2020 to previews in April of 2021 with an opening in early May.  Sure a flood more will follow in the coming days ... but won't mention this again here ... I only mention it as the West End/British commercial sector has a habit of picking up on the League's lead.   

 

 

The plan includes allowing outdoor performances later this year, with a view to piloting indoor performances afterwards.

 

The steps are:

  • Stage One – Rehearsal and training, with no audiences and adhering to social distancing guidelines
  • Stage Two – Performances for broadcast and recording purposes, adhering to social distancing guidelines
  • Stage Three – Performances outdoors with an audience plus pilots for indoor performances with a limited distance audience
  • Stage Four – Performances allowed indoors and outdoors, but with a limited distanced audience indoors
  • Stage Five – Performances allowed indoors and outdoors, with a fuller audience indoors

 

No dates have been provided for the implementation of each stage of the road-map, although the first two stages are possible now. .... Entering each stage will depend on the situation regarding the pandemic and scientific evidence at that point.

 

 

Edited by Bruce Wall

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11 hours ago, alison said:

That sounds even more depressing than the UK situation :( 

 

It is. I think it is now a common knowledge that work conditions for ballet dancers in Japan is very low and that is the reason that many Japanese dancers seek opportunities overseas. Only a few companies offer regular salary (as far as I know only National Ballet of Japan and soloists of K-Ballet) and most dancers are only paid for performing, which means if you get injured you get nothing. Many dancers have to have other jobs which are mainly teaching at local schools and open classes, or at restaurants. And of course because of the Corona virus situation, they have no performing opportunity, the schools and classes closed, restaurants closed so they have no source of income. There are some compensation rescue packages for freelancers, but even if you apply for them the payment is slow and very few have received that.  

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Posted (edited)

Seems a musical - Sleepless: A Musical Romance - intends to open and perform for live (distanced) audiences in London near the end of August ...

 

https://www.whatsonstage.com/london-theatre/news/sleepless-musical-to-begin-socially-distanced-perf_51852.html?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=26june2020

 

They do note at the end of the article:

 

 "While live performances are not currently permitted inside theatres, it is hoped Sleepless will be able to open on 25 August with Government permission."

 

Good luck to them. 

 

 

 

 

Edited by Bruce Wall

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Apart from all the obvious issues that are being addressed as more is understood about the virus, it's medical resolution and the specific impact here would it not be a good idea for those in the sector currently supported by state subsidy earning in excess of say £2,500 per month to take a cut to this level until full normal performances are restored. This would at least be a grand gesture of support for the industry. The current shouting at the government on social media is not the way to win friends and influence people. Carefully considered arguments are the way to go. Some give and take is always useful in reaching agreement.

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Welcome to the forum, Robin.

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23 minutes ago, Jan McNulty said:

 

This quote fromt the above article says it all:

Oscar Wilde wrote: “Theatre is the most immediate way in which a human being can share with another the sense of what it is to be a human being.”

At this moment in time, Scotland is crying out for that shared experience. We have never needed theatre more, say those in our arts world. To escape with others. To marvel. To be provoked. To laugh, to cry. To sit in wonder at a performance.  . . . . . . . . . .

 

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Interesting ...

 

https://playbill.com/article/broadway-will-officially-remain-closed-through-2020

 

As performing arts organizations across the country [i.e., USA] announce plans to forgo their fall programming, Broadway is following suit. The Broadway League has announced that all productions will remain closed through at least January 3, 2021. ....

Once that is able to happen [i.e., safely open both for audiences and the performing production personnel], audiences can expect shows to return on a rolling basis, rather than on one specific date. Details concerning this scheduling and ticketing will be announced in the coming weeks.

 

Edited by Bruce Wall

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