Coronavirus & The ALD

ALD Statement on Coronavirus (COVID-19)

 

The ALD is well aware that this is an extremely difficult time for all our members of any category.

 

As shows and events are closing or being postponed around the world we are seeing our work and income streams being cut. Freelancers could find this a huge strain. I’d like to make you aware that the ALD are talking to SOLT, UK Theatres, Equity and BECTU to find out how best to help our members. 

 

I would like all our members and non-members to know the ALD are here, listening, and offering advice where we are able to. Please contact liteline@ald.org.uk and also remember your unions have helplines that are available especially in these trying times. We have included various links to information below. There is always someone at the end of a phone or email, including myself, and we’re open to anyone.

 

On the whole we all have fantastic jobs working in live performance and entertainment industries. We allow others relax, have fun, and escape from the concerns of the every day. However, we also run careers and businesses and are therefore understandably thinking through and are concerned for the commercial impact of what is happening. Many members will be worried and angry that they’ll be out of pocket. For now, focus on getting home, because we can all revisit those topics at some point in the future once we’ve had the chance to get back up, dust ourselves down and assess the impact of what has occurred. The show can wait, you and your families’ wellbeing cannot.

 

May we all feel more motivated to share our love and kindness to one another at this time, and to even share our loo roll!

Johanna Town

Chair - The ALD

 


 

ALD Coronavirus Financial Survival Guide

It’s unprecedented: our industry has been brought to an abrupt, dramatic stop by the coronavirus and the measures being put in place to help control its spread. Running shows have been suspended. Events have been cancelled. Upcoming theatre shows have been ‘postponed’, though it’s not hard to imagine those postponements quickly becoming cancellations. Those in jobs are suddenly finding themselves without jobs; those who are self-employed, suddenly finding themselves without work.

The important thing: you are not alone. Everyone in our industry is in the same position. Many beyond our industry too.

We thought it might be helpful to pull together a quick ‘financial survival guide’ - things that you can and should do to help see you through these difficult times.

The latest version is available from the resources page of this website: https://www.ald.org.uk/resources/coronavirus-financial-guide

 


 

Freelancers Make Theatre Work

An inclusive community has been launched for the 200,000+ self-employed and freelance workers from all areas of theatre, opera, dance and live performance, who make up 70% of the UK theatre workforce. The campaign aims to encourage more transparent and inclusive conversations within the theatre industry by listening to and articulating theatre freelancers' needs to theatre managements, production companies and government.

There are a number of crucial actions for members to take and various opportunities to share opinions, information and resources.

To learn more please click here.

 


 

Write to Your MP Template

We are aware that there are lots of templates in existence already, and we advocate them all, however we want to add our suggestions for those who may not have yet been able to access others. Please investigate other templates to make sure your email / letter is the best of all worlds.

You can find our guide here: https://www.ald.org.uk/resources/write-to-your-mp-template

 


 

SUPPORT OPTIONS

Vectorworks have made their Essentials Training Seminars. free to attend. Click here and register through the eventbrite links for Architect, Landmark and Spotlight sessions taking place throughout each month. 

 

Drafty LX + Drafty AV have further extended their free trial again. This means all new subscriptions to the LX and AV plans this month get three months free rather than the usual 30 days. Students can apply for more. For more information please click here.

 

Strand are  currently offering a range of free training courses via the following link - https://www.strandlighting.com/global/support/online-training
 

Chroma Q have made their Vista training videos available for free on their Youtube channel. To subscribe to their channel and view the videos please click here.

 

ALD Member Mark Doubleday is generously offering free half-hour Vectorworks training tutorials to allow fellow professionals to pick up some new skills during this enforced down time. Members can sign up for a session of their choice and submit a specific topic that they would like to learn about which Mark will tailor the lesson to. For more information please click here.

 

ALD Member James Simpson has added to his collection of WYSIWYG training videos on his Youtube channel. To subscribe to James' channel please click here.

 

To support teachers & students during social distancing, anyone with an educational email address can have a free temporary QLab 4 Pro Bundle license starting now and expiring on June 1. To get yours, create an account at https://qlab.app/account and email support@figure53.com.

 

If you feel you could offer any kind of remote or online professional development and training to fellow members, then please do let us know so we can investigate how to facilitate it. We will update this page as we learn of more opportunities.

 

 

A Covid Theatre Practice is Launched

A group of theatre production electricians - including some ALD members - have come together to launch A Covid Theatre Practice – a platform for anyone who works backstage in UK theatre to share ideas on how we may have to work differently when theatre re-opens post pandemic.

The group consists of Gerry Amies, Martin Chisnall, Fraser Hall and Pete Lambert; all of whom are well known on the West End theatre circuit and between them are responsible for working on thousands of shows over the years.They have written a document entitled ‘Production Lighting in a Post Pandemic World’, which looks at how production electricians may have to adapt to new working measures when they return to work.

Whilst the document has been written by some of the most experience Production Electricians in the West End, Martin insists it is by no means the finished article: “Anybody can disagree with anything we’ve written, of course, but we hope in doing so they’re about to offer some ideas and come up with a better suggestion, perhaps more suited to their particular situation. That said, we welcome all suggestions and if you have any comments on what we’ve written, or ideas of your own, then please share them either via twitter @CovidPractice or email us acovidtheatrepractice@gmail.com

The ‘Production Lighting in a Post Pandemic World’ can be downloaded here.

 

 

Live Performance Streaming

In these times of closed theatres and cancelled events, there are a number of companies utilising the internet to broadcast past and even current work for people to watch in the interim.

 

Theatre publications and websites including The Stage, What's On Stage and Culture Whisper have created comprehensive lists of streamed performances, which they are updating daily:

https://www.thestage.co.uk/features/promoted/2020/where-can-i-watch-theatre-online-coronavirus-and-theatre-streaming/

https://www.whatsonstage.com/london-theatre/news/stage-shows-musicals-opera-free-stream-online_51198.html

https://www.culturewhisper.com/r/theatre/theatre_online_streaming/15292

 

BBC Arts have launched Culture in Quarantine, which has a wide range of resources including streamed performances, creative classes, virtual gallery tours, games and more:

https://www.bbc.co.uk/arts

 

And Set & Costume Designer Alisa Kalyanova has also created this thorough spreadsheet of available streaming options:

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1JC9gQn8-e_hL6vZGPBENdt_a3QEkcZVmbi3rv4_xNzE/htmlview?urp=gmail_link#gid=0

 


 

ADVICE & INFORMATION

Please follow the links below to the relevant advice that members of the industry have made available.  If you are a member of a Union, please contact them in the first instance but note the request for specific information or advice rather than discussing ‘what if’ scenarios.  They will be very busy advising other members, so you may need to be patient.

 

Public Health England: https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/public-health-england

 

Equity: https://www.equity.org.uk/news/2020/march/coronavirus-advice-to-equity-members/

Equity specific advice for Creative Teams: https://www.equity.org.uk/media/3995/coronavirus-designers-directors-choreographers-16032020.pdf

BECTU: https://bectu.org.uk/topic/covid-19-coronavirus/

PLASA: https://www.plasa.org/coronavirus/

 

Arts Council England: https://www.artscouncil.org.uk/covid19

Creative Scotland: https://www.creativescotland.com/what-we-do/latest-news/archive/2020/02/coronavirus-advice

Arts Council of Wales: https://arts.wales/news-jobs-opportunities/coronavirus-covid-19-update-16-march

 

Society of London Theatre & UK Theatre: https://officiallondontheatre.com/coronavirus-information/

Independent Theatre Council: https://www.itc-arts.org/blog

 

National Operatic and Dramatic Association (NODA): https://www.noda.org.uk/coronavirus

Little Theatre Guild: http://littletheatreguild.org/cancellation-of-ltg-national-conference-and-agm-17-19-april-2020/

 

UK Theatre Industry Coronavirus Support Facebook Group​: https://www.facebook.com/groups/489300505097902