The Society of London Theatre (SOLT) aims to build on London’s thriving play-going scene by launching a new campaign for people who love plays, Celebrate The Play.
Figures recently released by SOLT show that attendance at plays in the first half of 2009 was up 23% on the same period last year, meaning play-going in the capital is more buoyant than ever. Celebrate The Play hopes to encourage this to continue during an autumn season packed with new plays and exciting revivals.
Those registering at www.celebratetheplay.co.uk will join an online community of dedicated playgoers who will receive regular newsletters giving them a unique insight into London’s drama scene, as well as exclusive events and special offers from partners including Divine Chocolate, Naked Wine, Pizza Express and Waterstone’s. Those who sign up during the autumn will also be automatically entered into a monthly competition to win two tickets to the play of their choice.
The campaign is being supported by key players in the theatre industry, including the National Theatre, Ambassador Theatre Group, the Royal Court, Shakespeare’s Globe, the Lyric Hammersmith and the Old Vic, whose Artistic Director Kevin Spacey said: “People love plays because they love storytelling. Plays give people the chance to share a live theatre experience with a company of actors and fellow audience members; that’s a very special thing in our fragmented, high-tech world. It is no surprise to me that plays have remained so strong despite tough economic conditions. They give audiences and actors an unrivalled experience and our world would be a poorer place without them.”
Nica Burns, President of SOLT, commented: “2009 will be remembered as the year of the play. Brilliant new plays, outstanding revivals, unforgettable acting. The autumn drama season promises to be one of the best ever. Hence this initiative which has been embraced by the theatre industry to universally promote the wealth of London’s plays this autumn. Our hope is that it heralds a spirit of adventure as people are encouraged to try something new.”
Plays opening or already running this autumn include The Shawshank Redemption, Prick Up Your Ears, An Inspector Calls, Breakfast At Tiffany’s and Speaking In Tongues. The Woman In Black and The 39 Steps are among the long-running productions also supporting the campaign.
For more information and to register, visit www.celebratetheplay.co.uk