Lockdown update

(Top photo: Kenny Baraka with DJ Conrad Kira in Plot 17. Photo: Suzi Corker)

I was asked to summarise, briefly, what I got up to during lockdown. But I couldn’t. It was too varied, and lots of things required some explanation. I guess everyone knows that the theatre sector has been hit very hard by the pandemic. Many workers have left to get sensible, less precarious, less stressful jobs. I haven’t. But I have, as they say, diversified. Perhaps, I thought to myself, that’s worth a blogpost. So here goes.

Myself, Andrea Carr and Mona Kastell at the Ecostage Launch, CCA Glasgow, during COP26. (Photo: Kanatip Soonthornrak)

To start with, I used the opportunity afforded by the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme to help set up the Society of British Theatre Designers’s first working group on sustainability, taking on the role of co-ordinator. I also become one of the directors of Ecostage, an initiative for supporting ecological thinking in the performing arts. Along with Andrea Carr, Mona Kastell, Ruth Stringer and some volunteers, I helped rebuild the project from the ground up as a go-to platform for green-minded performing arts professionals. The new website, ecostage.online, was launched at COP26 last month. Various other advisory roles then followed, including helping gather material for The Green Book, joining the advisory panel on sustainability for the Queens Theatre Hornchurch and informally helping co-ordinate knowledge-sharing with other sustainable performing arts groups around the world. 

In the past I’ve joked that, because of the huge disconnect between workload and pay in the sector, my ideal working model would be to get some kind of stipend, then offer my services for free as I see fit. SEISS felt a bit like that, and for a while I was almost a full-time volunteer.

Continue reading “Lockdown update”

Assistant designer needed

Edit: the callout is closed early. It’s genuinely humbling how many amazing, talented people applied.

Here’s the call:

Assistant designer needed for Cece’s Speakeasy, a night of entertainment with storytellers, poets and musicians sharing new work that explores hope and action during the climate emergency. And the possible end of cocoa and coffee. The piece is being made and shown at The Albany, Deptford.

You will ideally be based in or near the SE London area and available for a minimum of 4 days pro rata in the second half of June. Prepping stuff at the venue from 21st June, with the get-in on 28th and the show opening on 30th. Key areas I need help with are sourcing/adapting costume and painting set, but there’s scope to be involved more widely, according to your interests. An enthusiasm for sustainable theatre design would be beneficial, as we are seeking to make this production as green as we can.

Students and recent graduates are welcome to apply; it’s fine to be learning/developing skills on the job and you will be supported by me and the team. But you will also need to be happy getting on with stuff independently.

We are particularly interested in working with artists that have a connection to cocoa and coffee growing countries.

£100 per day.

Deadline 12 noon Mon 14th June. No particular process for applying! Just drop me a line if you’re interested, and feel free to spread the word.

And while we’re on the subject, the callout for a creative assistant for East is also still live. [Edit: this callout has now closed but do always feel free to get in touch about Daedalus projects]