FRIDAY 12TH JUNE
As you will be aware, the past few weeks have been very challenging for theatres and the performing arts. Here at BYMT we’ve been reviewing the arrangements for this summer. Sadly, taking everything into account, we have decided to defer all our Summer Season productions to later dates due to the COVID-19 outbreak. The health of our community of performers, their families, our audiences and our freelance staff are our highest priorities, and this decision has been made to help ensure that everyone remains safe and well.
Although this creates a lot of administrative problems, in many ways it also presents us with exciting opportunities – we are having to find new theatres, new residential centres for rehearsing and different ways of doing things. In fact, we have done quite a lot already and found new theatres we want to perform in and some fabulous new university and boarding school accommodation for 2021.
So we very much hope that you will be able to stay part of the company and join us on what we are calling the Alternative Programme. We know we may have to move some people around from one project to another. We may also have to reduce the number of shows if not enough people take up the offer. If necessary we will even create new projects so that everyone who was successful in this year’s auditions gets a chance to take part. So please bear with us as we try and manage this. Note, in particular, that arrangements may change; this is because many of the organisations we are in contact with – theatres, boarding schools, universities – are partially closed and their staff are currently furloughed.
The ALTERNATIVE PROGRAMME means deferring all our summer projects to later dates and keeping the same company members as much as possible. Rehearsals will be split into two residential sessions, one in October 2020 half term, the other in either February or Easter 2021. The only exception will be Breadboy which will defer to July 2021 at the Lyric Theatre in Belfast. For Summer Camp participants we are able to offer an immediate transfer onto a new Autumn Camp at half term.
All BYMT participants will receive an email from our new Admissions Manager Frances Nicholson, including some information about your options regarding payments, changing your show, Autumn Camps and other exciting opportunities!
Full instructions on health and hygiene will be provided closer to the rehearsal periods. The safety of our companies is of upmost importance to us and further information regarding our safety measures will be sent before the projects start.
We apologise for all these changes. Like many other organisations, the current crisis has thrown out much of our planning and forced us to look at alternative ways of working. But this way of split rehearsals may become the thing of the future!
We hope that you will be able to join us on our fantastic alternative programme. Please confirm your place by Friday 26 June so that we can ensure your option is dealt with in good time.
If you have any problems please do call us at the (virtual) office on 020 8563 8825. Please bear with us during this very busy time - we anticipate that it will take up to a week to respond to any enquiries during this time. We expect to return to the (physical) office in mid-July, but until then there is only one incoming phone line which is diverted to a different staff member each day.
All the best,