Alternative Programme Update | British Youth Music Theatre

Alternative Programme Update

Alternative Programme


Firstly, we would like to thank you all for your patience over the past few weeks. We have been working hard to clarify the current government guidance (from a multiplicity of sources) and what this means for us at BYMT. 

We along with the other National Youth Music Organisations, through one of our industry bodies (Music Mark), took advice last week from Government officials and Ministers regarding our projects. We have been supported in this by a number of MPs. However, we are sorry to say that we have been advised to delay our October production rehearsal dates until next year. Instead, we are planning to move the productions to 2021 - some to February and Easter, others to a two-week Easter project. 

Additionally, we have been advised to delay our October and Christmas Musical Theatre Camps until next year. We are planning  to run at least one Easter Camp but hopefully more. The dates will be Monday 5 to Saturday 10 April. The first venue will be in London or close to London. If that looks as if it will fill up we may open a second. By that time, we hope Government will have cleared us to stay at the boarding schools and colleges we usually use and which have already reopened to both domestic and international boarders.

We know this will be a disappointment to many of you, as it is to us. We believe that our processes are robust enough to be as safe as any can be for young people and their relatives.

We realise that some of you may not be available for the two weeks we have allocated for your project at Easter as the two-week holidays are split over three weeks, dependent on which local authority you are based in. To accommodate this, we will be preparing to move performers from one show to another where it is practical and consistent with casting. We will also provide supporting letters to parents if they want to ask their school for leave of absence to get to rehearsals.

We have had to make a lot of adjustments to venues to make this work. On most courses, it is still a work in progress, an adventure if you like. We have lost some theatre venues, gained others, found new accommodation and lost some. We have two castles who want to host shows (a first for us!) and we will be the launch production at some venues when they reopen for the first time in almost a year. But we have had to contend with negotiating with venue staff who are or have been furloughed or made redundant; this impedes planning and leaves some arrangements unconfirmed.

We are aware too that some of you will be revising for exams and so we will be making study rooms available at all accommodation so you can escape from rehearsals to your revision of Romeo and Juliet, Parametric Differentiation or Culturing Microbes.

Meanwhile, this October half term, we will be having an online Zoom Meet-and-Greet session where you will get the chance to meet the rest of your fellow cast members and some of your production team. During this session you may look at a small section of script, new songs, movement, design updates and small tasks for your creative input! We will send details of the dates and times over the next few days.

We hope that you will be able to stay part of the company and join us in 2021 for our busiest year at BYMT, with two seasons in one year!  And if you cannot attend your current project, we hope to be able to provide other options for you. 

It will be really helpful if you can confirm your situation by Friday 9 October so that we can ensure your option is dealt with in good time

Thank you for your support and understanding during this time, we look forward to seeing you very soon.

All the best,

Alternative Programme