Sheffield Theatres - Latest Posts for News http://www.sheffieldtheatres.co.uk/about/news/ All the latest news from Sheffield Theatres including show confirmations, backstage insights, casting updates and information about activities and events at the theatres. en-gb Mon, 22 Sep 2014 16:24:32 +0100 Mon, 22 Sep 2014 16:24:32 +0100 Sheffield Theatres Launch Costume Hire Service http://www.sheffieldtheatres.co.uk/about/news/press-releases/sheffield-theatres-launch-costume-hire-service/ Sheffield Theatres today announce the launch of a new costume hire service. Theatrical costumes from the theatres’ wardrobe department, which houses over 10,000 garments, will be made available to both professional and amateur theatre companies, schools and universities, as well as film production companies, photographers and stylists, through the new service based at the Crucible. With the guidance and expertise of experienced staff, theatre groups will have the opportunity to hire garmen... Mon, 22 Sep 2014 00:00:00 +0100 http://www.sheffieldtheatres.co.uk/about/news/press-releases/sheffield-theatres-launch-costume-hire-service/ Sheffield Theatres today announce the launch of a new costume hire service. Theatrical costumes from the theatres’ wardrobe department, which houses over 10,000 garments, will be made available to both professional and amateur theatre companies, schools and universities, as well as film production companies, photographers and stylists, through the new service based at the Crucible.

With the guidance and expertise of experienced staff, theatre groups will have the opportunity to hire garments covering a vast number of historical periods and genres, created by Sheffield Theatres’ wardrobe department. Period costumes from productions including Oliver!, Othello and My Fair Lady will be available, along with more contemporary items from shows such as Boeing Boeing and Betrayal.

Additionally, the department also has a dedicated supply of children’s costumes which will be of particular interest to local performing theatre schools and academies.

Dan Bates, Sheffield Theatres’ Chief Executive said: ‘The work of our Wardrobe Team is truly astonishing – we have a rich resource of fantastic, high quality costumes here in our costume store, from all eras. It’s wonderful that through this initiative so many more companies will have the opportunity to benefit from our team’s skill and craftsmanship and we can generate income that will support the future work on our stages.’

This new business has been made possible thanks to the support of Sheffield based GRI Group which is sponsoring the initiative. Graham Royle, Chief Executive of GRI commented:

‘I am delighted that our support has enabled Sheffield Theatres to develop this new business. I know that, as a charity, it is vital that Sheffield Theatres protects its future sustainability and I believe that this initiative will be one of the ways in which they can do so.’

The costume hire service will operate on an appointment only system, and is open on Mondays, Saturdays and Wednesday evenings.

Any group interested in hiring costumes, can find out more details or make an appointment, by contacting the Costume Hire department on 0114 201 3720 or email CostumeHire@sheffieldtheatres.co.uk

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New shows on sale Saturday 20 September http://www.sheffieldtheatres.co.uk/about/news/news/new-shows-on-sale-saturday-20-september/ Nine new shows coming to Sheffield Theatres go on sale at 10.00am on Saturday 20 September. Tickets go on sale for The King’s Speech, Oklahoma!, The Sound of Music, Sing-a-longa Frozen, Mark Thomas’ Cuckooed, John Shuttleworth, English Touring Opera’s La Boheme and The Siege of Calais, Dinosaur Zoo and Croft House Theatre Company’s production of Sister Act. To find out more about the productions click through to the What’s On page here. Fri, 19 Sep 2014 00:00:00 +0100 http://www.sheffieldtheatres.co.uk/about/news/news/new-shows-on-sale-saturday-20-september/ Nine new shows coming to Sheffield Theatres go on sale at 10.00am on Saturday 20 September.

Tickets go on sale for The King’s Speech, Oklahoma!, The Sound of Music, Sing-a-longa Frozen, Mark Thomas’ Cuckooed, John Shuttleworth, English Touring Opera’s La Boheme and The Siege of Calais, Dinosaur Zoo and Croft House Theatre Company’s production of Sister Act.

To find out more about the productions click through to the What’s On page here.

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Public Dress Rehearsal of Twelfth Night http://www.sheffieldtheatres.co.uk/about/news/news/public-dress-rehearsal-of-twelfth-night/ Public Dress Rehearsal of Twelfth Night on Thursday 18 September. On Thursday 18 September at 7.30pm the dress rehearsal of Twelfth Night will be open to the public. Tickets for the performance will go on sale from the Box Office counter at 10.00am tomorrow morning (Thursday) priced only £1.00 per ticket. Tickets will be limited to 4 per person and can only be purchased through in-person booking. Cash only. Wed, 17 Sep 2014 00:00:00 +0100 http://www.sheffieldtheatres.co.uk/about/news/news/public-dress-rehearsal-of-twelfth-night/ Public Dress Rehearsal of Twelfth Night on Thursday 18 September.

On Thursday 18 September at 7.30pm the dress rehearsal of Twelfth Night will be open to the public. Tickets for the performance will go on sale from the Box Office counter at 10.00am tomorrow morning (Thursday) priced only £1.00 per ticket.

Tickets will be limited to 4 per person and can only be purchased through in-person booking. Cash only.

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Getting ready for sound - the Lyceum Refurbishment http://www.sheffieldtheatres.co.uk/about/news/blogs/thelyceumrefurbishment/ Dan Bates, Chief Executive of Sheffield Theatres, has spearheaded the campaign for the refurbishment of the Lyceum over the last two years. Now, thanks to funding from Arts Council England, Sheffield City Council, several trusts and foundations, the local business community and our audiences, the £1.9 million capital project is well underway. You can still donate to help us complete the work. Find out how here or call our Fundraising team on 0114 201 3820. Follow Dan’s weekly blog here f... Mon, 15 Sep 2014 00:00:00 +0100 http://www.sheffieldtheatres.co.uk/about/news/blogs/thelyceumrefurbishment/ Dan Bates, Chief Executive of Sheffield Theatres, has spearheaded the campaign for the refurbishment of the Lyceum over the last two years. Now, thanks to funding from Arts Council England, Sheffield City Council, several trusts and foundations, the local business community and our audiences, the £1.9 million capital project is well underway. You can still donate to help us complete the work. Find out how here or call our Fundraising team on 0114 201 3820.

Follow Dan’s weekly blog here for a unique insight into the work that’s taking place behind the hoardings.

Getting ready for sound – the Lyceum Refurbishment

15 September

Work continues apace whilst more contracts are gradually getting closer to completion. The focus is very much on paint, and now, the carpet.

The Stalls and Dress Circles are now being painted and I am very impressed with the new LED house lighting in the theatre. I won’t bore you with how they work, but it’s very impressive!

This week, the new theatre sound system will be commissioned and months of planning and design as well as miles of new cables will culminate in a new system for the theatre.

Work on the roof continues this week and we hope to start the installation of the 65 PV cells on the roof, so we can start generating our own electricity. We hope that during the daytime we will only use the electricity that we have generated (ie it will be free!). There’s also going to be a display in the foyer that shows how much electricity we have generated.

This week, it’s Twelfth Night production week and technical rehearsals start on stage. I was lucky enough to watch the last run-through in the rehearsal room on Saturday. It was a great run with an incredible cast with some great comedy singing and dance! I can’t wait to see the show on stage.

A busy week as life at the theatre returns to normal with board meetings, staff meetings and a day in London to watch two new productions that we have in development – not going to tell you what they are, but believe me, they’re both very exciting.

The start of the new season – the Lyceum Refurbishment

8 September

It’s been an incredibly busy week in the Lyceum with over 190 people working in every area of the building. We’re racing towards completion now, with the Balcony seats returned, decoration in the foyer areas, the stage lift commissioned, sound and lighting installations almost complete and the heat exchanger fully plumbed in. I am so delighted with how the project is going – thanks to the hard work of the Theatre team and our many contractors. We’re at a very exciting stage in the work, and it seems that now is a good time for me to hold back on some of the detail – so that we can all enjoy a big ‘reveal’ in a few weeks’ time.
So, to other matters – because alongside the building project, we’re also incredibly busy with some fantastic work for our stages!

It’s been an exciting week. David Mitchell took to the Crucible stage last Monday as part of the city’s Off The Shelf Festival and the 14 actors of the Twelfth Night company arrived in Sheffield. It’s always fantastic to get back to producing after the summer break, but never more so than when we’re working on one of Shakespeare’s most brilliant comedies (we’ve concentrated on the tragedies for the last few years). We always host a big ‘meet and greet’ where the whole staff team say hello to the company and it was great for me to see everyone, and to get reacquainted with Brian Protheroe, who is playing Feste, who I worked with when, back in the day, I was a Company Manager in Leeds.

We’re producing Twelfth Night with English Touring Theatre and it will go on to tour the country after its run here – you can find more here.

I’m off to see The Full Monty, which is opening at Manchester Palace Theatre next week (wishing the company lots of luck with the tech) and we’re gearing up for our own tour of This Is My Family throughout October and November.

So, alongside the refurbishment, much of my time is concerned with the work on our stages, and also how we extend the life of our work on tour – it’s a really exciting part of my job. I suppose it’s on a par with planning the new season with Daniel (Evans) – but that’s a blog for another day!

The start of Phase 2 – the Lyceum Refurbishment

1 September

It’s been yet another good week on the Lyceum project as all of the contractors are heading closer to final completion.

I took our Project Steering Group around to show them the progress last week and they all agreed that it’s looking fantastic. The Balcony is looking great, with the repainting of the ceilings and walls complete. The new lights also look terrific and give a lovely warm glow to the theatre.

More painters will join this week to complete the work. The colours we have chosen really give the building a more ‘heritage’ feel. I particularly like the Balcony foyer and bar area which has been completely revitalised by its paint job and the refurbishment of the chandelier. The light fittings on this have all been converted to LED and, having not worked properly for years, it now looks spectacular. Make sure you look up next time you’re in the stalls or circle foyers to see it in all its glory!

Today the Balcony seats have arrived back at the Lyceum (which is a huge relief for me!) and they will be installed over the course of the coming week. Also this week, the Chiller, the heat exchanger, the stage lighting, the lifts and the stage lift will all be commissioned. Outside the theatre the paintwork is almost complete, with only the canopy remaining and the work on the roof continues, as well as the process of commissioning the 66 Photovoltaic cells up there – I am really looking forward to these getting working! The Lyceum Stage is now packed full of new equipment, carpet and underlay. I’ve never seen it so full.

I was chatting with the Project Manager for our main electrical contractor, Tony, this week and he was telling me that he began his apprenticeship on the Lyceum refurbishment 25 years ago. It’s amazing for him to be back working on this refurbishment after all this time. His company have employed a new apprentice for this refurbishment and it made me reflect on how important skills sharing and on-the-job training of this kind is. We are working on our own apprenticeship scheme for the theatre which we hope to get running in the next few months – my conversation with Tony has reinvigorated my passion for getting this off the ground as it’s such an important legacy for the arts industry.

More news to come next week.

A cooler experience – the Lyceum Refurbishment

26 August

We’re now five weeks into the project and I’m pleased to report that we’re making great progress.

Workmen have been busy on all levels of the auditorium this week. The Balcony walls and ceiling have been painted and it is looking much tidier in there now. I’m particularly looking forward to the carpet and refurbished seats going in next. Teams of technicians and electricians have been putting in new cabling throughout the auditorium for the new lighting and sound systems. They have been doing a great job to co-ordinate their efforts and have almost completed this work. We’ll soon be moving on to the next stage of this process.

The most exciting work I’ve seen this week though is that taking place on the air cooling unit. Technicians have been up on the roof starting to put the pipes into the unit, which will allow us to filter cool air into the auditorium. This is particularly exciting because even though it’s something that people won’t physically see on their visit to the theatre, this system will have a very obvious and positive effect on the comfort of our audiences. As someone who has experienced the heat that can be generated in our beautiful auditorium on a hot day, this is one of the things I’m really looking forward to enjoying as part of our newly refurbished Lyceum.

Work on the orchestra pit lift is almost finished and I am pleased it no longer makes a terrible grinding wail! The work on the exterior is looking really good now, and this team will start on the roof next week. The painting will start properly next week with a large team on site. There’s loads to do as we had to repair lots more plaster than we first thought.

In other news this week, Sheffield was named by TripAdvisor as the best value one-night break in Britain. Those of us that live and work here have known for a long time that this is a fantastic place with so much to offer – including, if I do say so myself, outstanding theatre! I’m really looking forward to further improving our offer by completing this vital work on the Lyceum.

We now have just about a month left before we complete the project and there’s lots on the agenda to get through. We’re currently awaiting delivery of our new carpet which I think you’ll really like…Updates to follow next week!

The theatre laid bare – the Lyceum Refurbishment

18 August

I’ve had a few days away from the project this week and it’s startling walking back into the building. All of the carpets have now been removed from the foyers, the old signage and poster boards have been taken down and the last of the cracks have been repaired. This, combined with the scaffolding both inside and outside the building mean that it feels like we’re at the peak of the project – that it’s more building site than theatre at the moment.

The houselights have all been converted to LED and I saw them all being checked over the weekend – they look magnificent. Most of the technical installations are now well on the way which is very exciting to see.

Works in the plant room are coming on apace – this is the ‘heart’ of the theatre, providing heat and hot water across the building. Gradually the arteries are being reconnected to this room and over the coming weeks we’ll be a position to fully commission this new equipment.

Back in the office, the planning for the reopening is taking shape. This Is My Family, our award-winning musical comedy by Tim Firth, the writer of Calendar Girls, takes to the stage from Thursday 9 October. We first produced this show in the Studio last summer and it was such a popular and critical success that we’re delighted to now bring it back to the larger Lyceum stage and then take it on to tour across the UK. We want to take the opportunity to really celebrate the transformation of the Lyceum and to thank those of you who have made the refurbishment possible thanks to your generous donations.

Reaching new heights – the Lyceum Refurbishment

11 August

The week started early last Sunday morning with the arrival of an enormous crane to lift the new chiller and PV (Photo voltaic) cells on to the roof of the Lyceum. The chiller, as the name would suggest, is going to allow us to cool the auditorium when it’s too hot – something which is vitally important for audience comfort. Meanwhile, the 66 PV (or solar) panels are going to help us generate our own electricity – which will of course mean a reduction in our energy bills.

The company that supplied the crane is a local family business and I had a great chat with them – they’re huge supporters of the Lyceum and very proud to be part of the project. They were telling me about all of the shows they’ve enjoyed over the years- and some they haven’t – and how much they’re looking forward to the reopening in October. I really enjoy meeting people who are passionate about their work, about the theatre and about this city. This family are just one example – I’ve met countless craftspeople, specialists and suppliers over the last few months, all of whom have been fascinating.

It’s been great to see so many local businesses also reflect their passion for the Lyceum through their support of the Lyceum Business Club. We aimed to attract 25 businesses to the club, generating £10,000 for the project. We’ve now confirmed our 26th member and it’s been so successful, we may not stop there!

Anyway, back to the project – in the auditorium this week, the work on the orchestra pit lift continues. This lift has been very temperamental in the past and it’s going to be a great relief to have a new system in place so that we don’t have to operate it with our fingers crossed! We use this lift almost every week when we’re in full operation, so it’s important that it’s reliable.

The old lift motors

Of course all of the works on heating, lighting, sound and redecoration are ongoing too and the toilets on the lower ground floor have now been remodelled creating more ladies’ loos and additional baby changing facilities in both the gents and the ladies. Throughout the theatre we have had a team of builders examining the plasterwork and chipping into every crack and crevice – I had not appreciated how bad some of the foyers were!

You might have also noticed that more scaffolding has gone up on the Arundel Gate side of the Lyceum. This is to start work on repairing the roof. Water often leaks through into the rehearsal room and dressing rooms and, after this weekend’s weather, that work seems very timely indeed! Repairs to the main façade are going well and the painting has commenced – it’s looking really smart.

Another busy week in prospect..!

Heat and Light – the Lyceum Refurbishment

4 August

So, the second week of the refurbishment has been a big week as we continue to remove obsolete equipment and uncover a few more damp patches around the building.

We have turned our attention to the specialist installation of lighting and sound this week. We have miles and miles of cabling being replaced, reconfigured and repaired throughout the Lyceum – at some point I must make sure I have a good fact about the amount that’s going in – but that’s not for now! In addition, all of the new dimmers for the stage lighting are being installed. These will give us much improved control over the many stage lights and the houselights offering us more functionality.

On the lower ground level, the toilets are coming on a-pace with new walls being built and plumbing underway; in the auditorium, the Balcony is covered in scaffolding as the team gain access to the ceiling to replace lights and speakers as well as being ready to start to paint; meanwhile if you’ve walked past the Lyceum over the last week, newly bedecked with brightly coloured fence panels, you’ll have noticed the work on repairing the external façade is now underway. The team has many cracks to deal with, and the cherry picker, with its two diligent workers, has become something of an attraction over the last week, so some of you will be pleased to know they will be with us for a little longer as they repair the external render.

The most exciting news is that the new heat exchanger has been manufactured and arrived on site this week, so the work on the Plant Room will now commence. Anyone who has come in contact with me over the last 6 months will know that, for me, this room offers one of the strongest arguments for the Lyceum refurbishment. It’s currently home to seven huge tanks which are constantly full of hot water, the average temperature in the room is 95 degrees, and the heat is as intense in mid-July as it is in mid-January – there is currently no mechanism to turn it down or indeed switch it off! This entire room has been stripped out and over the coming week the new more efficient system will be installed – making a massive difference to our long-term energy consumption. You can’t see it, but this is my happy face.

I have been so impressed with the diligence of my team, the support we have had from our main specialist consultants and finally with the care with which our selected contractors are undertaking the work.

Keeping my fingers crossed as this week is a really critical week!

A View From The Lyceum Refurbishment

28 July

Well, finally, after years of discussions, planning and six months of fundraising, the Lyceum refurbishment has begun. We’re now a week in to the work, and I’ve been persuaded to write this blog to give you an insight into this exciting project.

It’s hard to describe the feeling I had when the Lyceum was handed over to the builders. I’m obviously incredibly excited that the work is underway, however that excitement was tinged with a little sadness; there’s always a certain sadness about an empty theatre, but having spent so much time in the Lyceum over the last few months, I suppose it’s a little like saying goodbye to an old friend. This magnificent building is now in the hands of teams of electricians, stone masons, engineers, scaffolders, builders and our own Project Management team, and I can hardly believe that in a few months this theatre will be transformed into the cooler (that’s air temperature!), more comfortable, energy efficient and technically improved building that we’ve been dreaming of for two years!

So, I hope if you’ve got this far you’re interested to know how it’s going? Well, the timescale is tight, so things have had to get off to a flying start! There are lots of different contractors working all over the building, but the two pieces of work that I have most looked forward to have been: the demolition of the cloakroom on the lower ground floor and the start of work in the Balcony. The cloakroom area will be reconfigured to make way for a new gents’ and an extension to the ladies’ toilets that will give us more ladies cubicles – something that many of you have asked for in your feedback to us.

Meanwhile, in the auditorium, the removal of the Balcony represents the start of the final phase of the auditorium seating work (the Stalls seating was refurbished in 2011, the Circle in 2012). The seats have now gone off for refurbishment and will be returned to us next month.

It’s great to see so much work so far advanced at the end of the first week. And frankly, it’s also a relief that the demolition work hasn’t revealed anything too unexpected – there’s always a risk with a building the age of the Lyceum!

I can’t end my first blog without a thank you note. So many of you have made donations over the last 12 months – from adding £1.00 when buying tickets, to texting your support, to sending in cheques. We really couldn’t have realised this project without your support – thank you! You’ll notice that we’re continuing to ask for donations to the Lyceum. The fundraising is almost complete, but we’re still looking for a 25th business club member to bring the total raised from local businesses to an impressive £10,000 (it’s only £400 for the year, a small but vital contribution to the work), and we still need your generosity to fully realise our vision for the Lyceum. If you can help, please find out more about how to donate here.

Well, we’ve both survived my first blog! I’ll be back in a week’s time with more news from the building site, in the meantime, wish us luck as we embark on our second week.

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News shows onsale now to Centre Stage Members http://www.sheffieldtheatres.co.uk/about/news/news/news-shows-onsale-now-to-centre-stage-members/ Nine new shows coming to Sheffield Theatres are now on sale to Centre Stage Members. Tickets went on sale to Sheffield Theatres’ Centre Stage Members at 10.00am on Saturday 13 September for The King’s Speech, Oklahoma!, The Sound of Music, Sing-a-longa Frozen, Mark Thomas’ Cuckooed, John Shuttleworth, English Touring Opera’s La Boheme and The Siege of Calais, Dinosaur Zoo and Croft House Theatre Company’s production of Sister Act. Tickets are available exclusively to Centre Stage M... Sat, 13 Sep 2014 00:00:00 +0100 http://www.sheffieldtheatres.co.uk/about/news/news/news-shows-onsale-now-to-centre-stage-members/ Nine new shows coming to Sheffield Theatres are now on sale to Centre Stage Members.

Tickets went on sale to Sheffield Theatres’ Centre Stage Members at 10.00am on Saturday 13 September for The King’s Speech, Oklahoma!, The Sound of Music, Sing-a-longa Frozen, Mark Thomas’ Cuckooed, John Shuttleworth, English Touring Opera’s La Boheme and The Siege of Calais, Dinosaur Zoo and Croft House Theatre Company’s production of Sister Act.

Tickets are available exclusively to Centre Stage Members until the shows go on general sale on Saturday 20 September at 10.00am.

To become a member and start booking your tickets for these shows today, click here.
More details about our Centre Stage Membership can be found here.

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Voting open for Most Welcoming Theatre Award 2014 http://www.sheffieldtheatres.co.uk/about/news/news/voting-open-for-most-welcoming-theatre-award-2014/ Voting is now open for the My Theatre Matters! Most Welcoming Theatre Award 2014 in association with Smooth Radio. This prestigious award is voted for by the general public, so we would be honoured if you could show your support for Sheffield Theatres today, and spread the word with fellow theatre-lovers everywhere. To vote, please click here. If you enjoy visiting Sheffield Theatres, if you believe we make a difference in the region, and if you want our reputation to keep on growing, then v... Thu, 11 Sep 2014 00:00:00 +0100 http://www.sheffieldtheatres.co.uk/about/news/news/voting-open-for-most-welcoming-theatre-award-2014/ Voting is now open for the My Theatre Matters! Most Welcoming Theatre Award 2014 in association with Smooth Radio. This prestigious award is voted for by the general public, so we would be honoured if you could show your support for Sheffield Theatres today, and spread the word with fellow theatre-lovers everywhere.

To vote, please click here.

If you enjoy visiting Sheffield Theatres, if you believe we make a difference in the region, and if you want our reputation to keep on growing, then vote today

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