Cork theatre takes further measures to protect staff and actors

Cork theatre takes further measures to protect staff and actors

Sean Kelly, CEO of The Everyman Palace Theatre, MacCurtain Street, Cork. The theatre has taken further measures to protect its staff by halting all Play it by Ear live audio broadcasts from the venue

THE EVERYMAN Theatre has taken further measures to protect its staff during the pandemic after temporarily halting all live audio broadcasts from the venue.

Play It by Ear live audio broadcasts were previously in place that allowed theatre lovers to enjoy their favourite productions at home. However, with Covid-19 cases rising, the Everyman team were determined not to risk the safety of its staff and actors.

Since launching the digital programme Play It by Ear last October, The Everyman has presented 15 live rehearsed readings, three live music events throug live audio broadcasts. They also hosted an eight-part audio production for schools and families. 

Last December, the theatre made an ambitious leap to video production, live streaming John Spillane’s traditional Christmas show. The Everyman Christmas Songbook was also produced and made available as a pre-recorded video stream.

Once Upon a Time with The Everyman Panto Stars will remain available as a pre-recorded video stream until Sunday January 31. 

A digital preview of Gare St Lazare’s How It Is, by Samuel Beckett also went ahead as a live video stream from a rehearsal studio space in Paris on Sat January 9 and January 10. Since October, the digital programme has reached 19 counties of Ireland, 11 countries, and welcomed almost 5,000 virtual audience members.

Diana Bodrone tuned in from Chevreuse in from France to an audio broadcast of Tom Crean, Antarctic Explorer, performed by Aidan Dooley.

She described how the audio broadcast helped her feel closer to home.

“The Play It by Ear production of Tom Crean was promoted via the Mná Paris group," she said. "We are a feisty group of Irish women who miss home terribly and were just so thrilled to be able to tune in.“ 

In 2020, the not-for-profit theatre, which depends on ticket sales for more than 90pc of its income, received almost 3,000 individual donations.

The theatre’s CEO, Sean Kelly praised Everyman Theatre fans for supporting them during this difficult time.

“Despite the enormous obstacles we have faced, we will continue to passionately work to remain at the heart of the cultural fabric of Cork and to be indispensable to the communities we serve. The support from our audiences has been heartening.” 

The Play It by Ear programme has filled 181 roles since October of last year that have ranged from photographers to directors and writers.

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