Staffordshireamdram.co.uk Forum

The Staffordshireamdram Theatre Discussion Board
 
To SiteTo Site  HomeHome  CalendarCalendar  FAQFAQ  SearchSearch  MemberlistMemberlist  UsergroupsUsergroups  RegisterRegister  Log inLog in  

Share | 
 

 The Mitchell Memorial Theatre

View previous topic View next topic Go down 
AuthorMessage
Tom
Admin
Admin
avatar

Posts : 62
Join date : 2008-03-23
Age : 34
Location : Newcastle-under-Lyme

PostSubject: The Mitchell Memorial Theatre   Fri Apr 18, 2008 6:27 am

THEATRE'S ROLE IS NOT CLEAR
09:40 - 12 April 2008

Of Course, we are all delighted that the Mitchell Memorial building has received a massive reconstruction grant from the National Lottery, but are we all certain what the resulting building will be? And will it be run by people who understand theatre, which is certainly not the case at the present time.The Sentinel's article illustrates the heart of the problem for the city council. In your article, the building is variously called The Mitchell Memorial Youth Arts Centre, the Mitchell Memorial Youth Centre and the Mitchell Memorial Youth Theatre. Which is correct? And is the building only for youth groups now, as all these names suggest? What happens to the rest of the local arts community?

I hope the end result of the revamp will be a theatre. If it is, it will need to be run like a theatre. It must be run under the terms of a normal theatre licence and within the laws governing theatrical performances. It must have rules that make it easy for local groups to use it for theatrical performances, without council red tape. This is not currently the case.

For example, at present, groups using the building have to be out at 4.45pm on a Sunday, the day they enter the building to prepare for a production. The current management clearly has no idea that it is impossible to get-in for a production and have a technical rehearsal all before 4.45pm.

If the council insists on groups leaving at 4.45pm on the Sunday, when is the technical rehearsal to take place? If it has to be held on the Monday evening, that pushes the dress rehearsal to the Tuesday, the day that most groups open their run.

If the opening night then has to be pushed to the Wednesday, groups will lose a performance night, depriving them of some of the valuable income needed to pay the costs of the production and the hire of the theatre. It would be especially hard for groups presenting musicals, with their added orchestral commitments and very expensive royalties.

Another current problem is that the new contract for amateur groups bans all smoking throughout the building, even on stage. Yet, the new bill gives exemption to the stage during a licensed theatrical performance, since many plays often have smoking as an integral element in the plot. Surely the current managers know this. Do they keep abreast of the laws governing theatre? It would seem not.

Now, it could be argued that the building is not a theatre, but a youth centre, as some of the titles used in your article suggest. In that case, the managers can fix their own rules, without reference to the laws governing theatrical productions. But if it is used as theatre and has a theatre licence, then it is a theatre and should be run as such. You can't have it both ways.

Presumably, the National Lottery thinks it is a theatre or it would not have awarded the grant in the first place!

I do hope that the money will be spent with advice from people who know theatre, unlike the disastrous Regent Theatre project. That fabulous building was meant to be available to community groups, too, but the failure at the start to install proper sound and lighting facilities, and the current high cost of rental and staff wages, means that the theatre is now way out of the range of most amateur societies.

I await the details of Mr Courtie's revamp plans and the plans for the subsequent management of the Mitchell Memorial 'Building' with bated breath.

BRIAN RAWLINS Westlands
Back to top Go down
View user profile http://www.staffordshireamdram.co.uk
ianb

avatar

Posts : 33
Join date : 2008-05-16
Age : 60
Location : Bignall End

PostSubject: the Mitch   Sun May 18, 2008 10:40 am

I agree with most of what Brian says, it's a once only opportunity and I hope that they really take notice of what the people who use the theatre say we need rather than what the bureaucrats think we need. To be honest, the Mitch needs a fair bit of work, but for me the big ask is a flytower. I can cope with crap dressing rooms and poor bar area if it means that the stage facilities are improved.
Back to top Go down
View user profile
ianb

avatar

Posts : 33
Join date : 2008-05-16
Age : 60
Location : Bignall End

PostSubject: Mitchell opening hours   Mon Jun 23, 2008 7:53 am

North Staffs had their get in for Full Monty yesterday and had to be out for 4:45; how ridiculous is that? They only just had chance to get the set up and a quick familiarisation for the cast. No chance to do any tech work. The council don't seem to want the bigger societies at the Mich.
Back to top Go down
View user profile
Libby



Posts : 11
Join date : 2008-09-30

PostSubject: Mitchell Memorial Theatre refurbishment   Sun Oct 05, 2008 5:43 pm

Does anyone know when the Mitchell will be closed for the refurbishment, how long its likely to
take, and whether a new and "comfortable" seat will increase the price of a ticket?!
Also, where will local amateur societies perform whilst all this happens?

Libby
Back to top Go down
View user profile
ianb

avatar

Posts : 33
Join date : 2008-05-16
Age : 60
Location : Bignall End

PostSubject: mitchell   Wed Oct 08, 2008 4:16 am

I think the Mitch will be closing in the New Year, I've not heard how long the work is going to take but I would think 6 months minimum. Ticket prices are down to the hirers but I wouldn't be surprised if the council didn't put the cost of hiring the theatre up once it's done.
When it comes to alternatives, The Rep is the obvious, but they are getting pretty full now, so you've got to look at perhaps using the Queens at Burslem, or even further afield - Lyceum at Crewe? It's all down to cost in the end, it's getting so expensive to put a show on now
Back to top Go down
View user profile
Libby



Posts : 11
Join date : 2008-09-30

PostSubject: Mitchell Theatre "get ins"   Tue Nov 04, 2008 6:04 pm

This is a bit 'old hat' now really but thought I'd mention N.A.O.S "get in" for Cinderella, one sunday last month.
We've named it the "nearly got in" as it didnt happen at the theatre at all! We were in the Mitch monday evening,
which was the first and only run through for the backstage crew - how unfair is that?!! Then, in effect, the opening
night on tuesday became the dress rehearsal! Hmmmmm.............

Isn't that what happened with North Staffs Full Monty?

Am just wondering if Stoke Youth will fare better with their 'get in' next week, for 'Les Mis'? I hope so!
Good Luck!


Libby
Back to top Go down
View user profile
lapetitepaumee



Posts : 2
Join date : 2008-10-15

PostSubject: Re: The Mitchell Memorial Theatre   Sun Nov 09, 2008 1:45 pm

Yeah, that's the way it is for every group now. Sad I just hope they change their policy when the refurbishment is completed.
Back to top Go down
View user profile
ianb

avatar

Posts : 33
Join date : 2008-05-16
Age : 60
Location : Bignall End

PostSubject: Re: The Mitchell Memorial Theatre   Mon Nov 09, 2009 3:26 am

Refurbishment started, hope we get something decent at the end of it. Unfortunately won't be getting any extra seats - probably end up with less. Could really do with a 600ish seater somewhere as the Regent just seems a no hoper for Amateur groups now with both Rent and the Producers pulling very low audiences for two very professional shows.
Back to top Go down
View user profile
Sponsored content




PostSubject: Re: The Mitchell Memorial Theatre   

Back to top Go down
 
The Mitchell Memorial Theatre
View previous topic View next topic Back to top 
Page 1 of 1
 Similar topics
-
» theatre fold card
» Comming Soon........1/32 Scale...... 25/J, Mitchell "Strafer"
» Bill Targett Memorial Steam Rally
» 20th Anniversary Memorial Tribute
» What role does theatre play in your life?

Permissions in this forum:You cannot reply to topics in this forum
Staffordshireamdram.co.uk Forum :: The Local Stage :: Theatres & Venues-
Jump to: