Whether you want to work backstage or front of house, alongside other people who love theatre, there was plenty to find at TheatreCraft23. The biggest (and best) event yet, TheatreCraft23 had more demonstrations and workshops than ever in the Royal Opera House and across the West End’s biggest venues, for budding writers, designers, and technicians. These were led by industry experts who share the same love and passion for theatre.
For those who like getting stuck into creating the props and costumes that are used onstage eight times a week, the Needles and Pins Costume and Props tour in the Royal Opera House revealed the multiple avenues you can take to get into this side of the industry. You can take the traditional route by gaining a degree in your preferred field and then following it up with work experience or gaining freelance work. But if you like experimenting with different design work, colleges and theatres now offer apprenticeships and short courses that can help you learn on the job and fill blanks in your portfolio. For example, if you specialised in woodwork and pottery but wanted to try your hand at costume jewellery, there’s a course for that. As long as you showcase the skills in your portfolio, you’ll be on your way to a successful career in prop-making and costumes!
Edinburgh hosts one of the world’s largest art festivals, and Laura Schofield from Pleasance Theatre revealed how you can join the Edinburgh Fringe team in her How to Fringe talk. Bringing in over 600,000 people each year and platforming exciting new shows since 1947, they’re always on the lookout for people to hand out flyers, help front of house and sell tickets at the box office with their popular volunteering scheme.Applications open in February 2024 for next year’s festival, but if you’d prefer to help their office team and work directly with producers, also watch out for openings for social media, press, marketing and administrative support. It doesn’t matter whether you’re 16 or 60 – at Edinburgh Fringe there’s always something for you to help with!
Maybe you’re the kind of person who’d prefer to express your love for theatre in an office. The Branding and Marketing A Show workshop, hosted by AKA’s James Legatt at the Lyceum Theatre, revealed the work that goes into advertising some of your favourite shows. Through a fun workshop that got our creative juices flowing using real life marketing briefs, we learned the strategies it takes to sell a show and how to engage with different audiences, from wedding TikTok trends with the cast of Mamma Mia to free books for schools to see Matilda The Musical. Whether you like creating posters and billboards or coming up with ideas based on the latest trends, all you need to remember is the five most important things to work in theatre marketing: Organisation, passion, commitment, attention to detail and keeping calm under pressure.
Blog by Mica Blackwell
Photos by Aemelia Taylor