2013 was a very special year for Nottingham Playhouse as we celebrated the 50th birthday of our iconic building, designed by Peter Moro and opened by Lord Snowdon on 11 December 1963.
We also launched our 50:50 appeal, raising money to provide 50 free tickets at each of 50 performances throughout the year. These special tickets are donated to specially selected charities and community groups whose social and economic circumstances mean that a trip to the theatre is not ordinarily possible.
Thanks to generous donations from individuals, businesses and charitable trusts we reached our £20,000 target, enabling us to fund 2,500 free tickets for people who have been unable to attend the theatre before.
Ticket beneficiaries have included homeless hostels for families, a special needs Girl Guides unit, housing and social support services for people on low incomes, charities supporting the elderly and isolated, groups supporting asylum seekers and refugees, women and children who have been victims of domestic abuse, and vulnerable young people who are not in mainstream education. For many people it has been their first experience of live theatre and we have had some truly wonderful reactions.
“Being offered free tickets by Nottingham Playhouse to see The Kite Runner gave Nottingham and Nottinghamshire Refugee Forum a great opportunity to come together as a group in a social setting. I can’t tell you just how much people enjoyed going – everyone was so happy on the night! For the vulnerable and desperate people who access our Destitution Fund as they have no other means of support, this was an invaluable chance to access the arts.”
Nottingham & Nottinghamshire Refugee Forum – who came to The Kite Runner
“Everyone really enjoyed the play. They thought the cast members were multi-talented and were able to make you feel the cast was bigger than it actually was. The costumes were amazing and they enjoyed the music especially the live playing. It was a wonderful experience for the children and young adults – thank you!”
Highwood House (homeless families hostel) – who came to I Was A Rat!
Because of the overwhelmingly positive reactions from ticket beneficiaries and because of the way the appeal has been championed by so many of our audience members and friends, we have committed to continue the appeal beyond the building’s 50th year – aiming to raise at least £20,000 every year, to fund at least 2,500 free tickets, to continue this important work and to continue to ensure that our theatre remains truly accessible.
Stephanie Sirr, Chief Executive of Nottingham Playhouse, explains:
“When Nottingham Playhouse celebrated 50 years in its historic home we were once again reminded of our need and desire to engage with our many communities to ensure that theatre is truly accessible.
“We have worked very hard in recent years to ensure that ticket prices are reasonable, that offers to the poorest communities are taken up and that we represent the demographic of our city in our audience.
“In support of this aim, and echoing the very first ambitions of the theatre to be a theatre “of the people”, we launched the Playhouse 50:50 appeal.
“To fund one ticket costs £8. Think of it as buying a theatre ticket for a friend you haven’t met yet.”
We are working with community partners, donors and sponsors locally to make sure that tickets – 2,500 every year – are donated to a wide variety of beneficiaries and to those of greatest need.
There are several straightforward ways for you to support the 50:50 appeal:
- In person or by calling the Box Office on 0115 941 9419 – just ask to support the 50:50 appeal when you’re booking your tickets
- By cheque made payable to Nottingham Playhouse Trust Limited and sent to Playhouse 50:50, Nottingham Playhouse, Wellington Circus, Nottingham, NG1 5AL
The Playhouse 50:50 appeal is kindly sponsored by Hart’s, the 4 star boutique hotel and award-winning restaurant in Nottingham: