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TheatreCraft 2018 (Photography: Rocio Charon)

Theatre Makers of the future assemble: TheatreCraft returns for 2018

Published August 1, 2018

Booking is now open for TheatreCraft, the UK’s largest free theatre careers event for young people, which returns to the Waldorf Hilton Hotel on Monday 19 November 2018.

TheatreCraft is a full day of activities offering a unique glimpse into a range of non-performance careers from directing, stage management and producing to marketing, lighting and automation.

More than a careers fair, TheatreCraft remains entirely free and offers attendees the opportunity to take part in dynamic workshops led by leading industry professionals, explore the vibrant marketplace of exhibiting arts organisations and education providers, connect with peers and potential employers through various networking opportunities and speak with experts in one-to-one advice sessions.

Aspiring theatre makers, whether students taking their first steps into a future career or young professionals looking for a job change or inspiration, are encouraged to book places at the event via the TheatreCraft website. For the first time, the event is open to 16-30 year-olds (instead of 16-25 as in past years), in acknowledgement of the necessity to provide services for people changing career as well as entering the sector.

For the third year running TheatreCraft will return to the Waldorf Hilton Hotel, who have generously donated their stunning Palm Court to play host to TheatreCraft’s renowned marketplace of exhibiting arts organisations and several further rooms for interactive workshops.

Speaking about TheatreCraft returning to the Waldorf Hilton Hotel General Manager, Guy Hilton, commented: “I am delighted that the Waldorf Hilton, which resides in the heart of Theatreland, can once again be a part of TheatreCraft. TheatreCraft provides a unique opportunity to nurture the talent of young people in the world of dramatic art, which echoes very well our own commitment to create opportunities for young people in the hospitality industry.”

Behind-the-scenes roles in theatre can often go unrecognised, but this year TheatreCraft is championing theatre’s heroes-in-hiding to highlight the extraordinary skillsets and roles available within the industry, and inspire a whole new generation to consider offstage career opportunities in the theatre.

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Fronting this year’s campaign are a selection of inspiring theatre makers from different corners of the industry: Daniel Walker (Head of Armoury at the Royal Opera House), Debbie Hicks (Producer), Kadhija Raza (Set & Costume Designer), Rajiv Pattani (Lighting Designer & Technician at the Bush Theatre), Sam Shuck (Prosthetics & Make Up Artist) and Sunita Hinduja (Company and Stage Manager).

Commenting on this year’s event, Rajiv Pattani said:“TheatreCraft is something I wish I was aware of much earlier in my career. The event provides a fascinating insight into the industry and a vital platform for young people to explore all the avenues of life that goes into making such amazing West End and Fringe productions. I’m incredibly proud to be supporting this year’s campaign and can’t wait for the doors to open again in November this year!”

Kadhija Raza, who attended TheatreCraft in 2015, commented: “TheatreCraft is so important for young people to learn about the multitude of roles that exist within theatre. When I attended in 2015 I completely fell in love with all aspects of theatre design, so it’s great to be representing designers for TheatreCraft this year.”

In 2017, SOLT and UK Theatre’s Workforce Review found that off-stage theatre, despite benefiting from a passionate, engaged workforce, is struggling with a shortage of skilled technical workers.

TheatreCraft, which was originally created by Theatre Royal Haymarket Masterclass Trust (Masterclass) in 2003, is one of several ongoing initiatives to improve inclusion and accessibility in different areas of the theatre industry.

Other initiatives include SOLT and UK Theatre’s recent Inspiring the Future of Theatre, a campaign to get theatre industry professionals to visit UK schools, inspiring children about theatrical jobs and Bridge the Gap, a Stage One initiative to offer training, support and opportunities to budding producers from underrepresented backgrounds.

TheatreCraft is organised in partnership with the Theatre Royal Haymarket Masterclass Trust, the Royal Opera House, the Society of London Theatre and Mousetrap Theatre Projects.

The event is generously sponsored by the Waldorf Hilton Hotel, White Light, John Good, Delfont Mackintosh Theatres and Nederlander Theatres.

You can learn more about careers in theatre, and explore resources from the backstage world, on our Inspiring The Future Of Theatre page.

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