Why we're here
On March 16th 2020 due to the International Coronavirus Pandemic the UK Government advised the public to avoid large gatherings. As a result SOLT and UK Theatre made the decision to close all theatres across the country. On March 20th the Government officially closed all theatres for an indefinite period.
This has caused huge disruptions to the lives of thousands of people working in the theatre industry across the UK. Actors, Directors, Designers, Stage Managers, Lighting, Sound and Video Teams, Wardrobe and Wigs Teams, Stage Crews, Production Managersm Props and Costume Supervisors, Front of House Staff, Box Office Staff, Stage Door Keepers… The list goes on and on.
The theatre industry in the UK employs over 270,000 people many of whom have been unable to receive any kind of support from the UK Government during the pandemic.
Since then the Theatre Support Fund+ has worked tirelessly to raise over £1.1 million for those hardest hit within the theatre community.
In June 2020 after being delayed twice due to UK national lockdowns we presented 'The Show Must Go On! - Live at the Palace Theatre' a celebration of the best of the West End. The concert featured performances from 18 current West End shows and included an opening number specially written by Stiles and Drew. The final performance of the concert was captured by National Theatre Live and broadcast live worldwide by Universal Pictures. This was then followed by a TV broadcast on Sky Arts in July. The concert was attended by the current Mayor of London Sadiq Khan.
Who are we?
The Theatre Support Fund+ was set up in May 2020 by Chris Marcus and Damien Stanton, two friends who work within the theatre industry as a direct response to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Working alongside Acting for Others and The Fleabag Support Fund their 'The Show Must Go On!' Campaign is raising much needed funds for the theatre community.
To date the fund has raised over £1.1 Million providing financial assistance to many of the hardest hit within the theatre community.
About the founders
Chris has worked in the theatre industry since 1996 initially in Stage Management for Cameron Mackintosh and Disney Theatrical before founding MarcusHall Props with Jonathan Hall in 2007. They are now one of the countries leading suppliers of props to many major plays and musicals in the West End and further afield including many featured on The Show Must Go On! design.
Damien has worked in Stage Management since 2013 working on productions at the National Theatre, Chichester Festival Theatre, The Donmar Warehouse, Garsington Opera, The Royal Shakespeare Company as well as many musicals including Matilda The Musical, CATS and Phantom of The Opera.
We have set up the `Theatre Support Fund+’ as a way to raise funds for these 3 important charities.
Acting For Others
For every successful actor, there are hundreds of performers, backstage and front-of-house theatre staff who are not so fortunate. They may be suffering from illness, disability, or be caring for children with special needs. Many in our industry lend their support or put their name to other good causes but, like any profession, we also try to take care of our own.
Fleabag Support Fund
The Fleabag Support Fund will partner with charities responding to the Coronavirus Covid-19 pandemic to provide grants to freelancers working in the theatre industry who are in urgent financial need and unable to work as a direct result of the coronavirus pandemic.
NHS COVID-19 Urgent Appeal
There are more than 250 NHS charities across the UK and most of them focus on helping our hospitals do more. Collectively these charities give £1 million every day to the NHS so that people can stay well for longer and get better faster. In recent years NHS charities have funded major capital projects, pioneering research and medical equipment at our hospitals, helping patients access the best possible care when they need it most.
We would like to thank the many people that have helped to bring this project to life
Tali Pelman, Stage Entertainment and the Producers of Tina The Musical.
Stacey Mindich, Adam Speers and the Producers of Dear Evan Hansen.
Nica Burns and the Producers of Everyone’s Talking about Jamie.
Kenny Wax and the Producers of Six the Musical.
Cameron Mackintosh, Jeffrey Seller and the Producers of Hamilton.
Sonia Friedman and the Producers of The Book of Mormon.
Playful Productions and the Producers of Wicked. ©WLPL
Andre Ptaszynski and the Producers of Matilda the Musical.
Theresa Steel, Tim Headington, Rebecca Quigley and the Producers of & Juliet the Musical.
Cameron Mackintosh and the Producers of Les Miserables.
DreamWorks Theatricals and the Producers of The Prince of Egypt. ©DWA LLC
Disney Theatrical Productions and the Producers of the The Lion King
Junkyard Dog Productions, Smith and Brant Theatricals, and the Producers of Come From Away.
Cameron Mackintosh, The Really Useful Group and the Producers of The Phantom of the Opera.
Disney Theatrical Productions, Cameron Mackintosh and the Producers of Mary Poppins
Judy Craymer, Littlestar Services and the Producers of Mamma Mia!
Everyone at AKA, Dewynters, Muse Creative, Luke Shires Marketing and all at the Producers offices for help with artwork supply.
Sarah Coleman and all at WhatsOnStage
Alistair Smith and all at The Stage
Callum Taylor and all at the Evening Standard
Stacey Pedder at Raw PR
Harry Medd and the team at Sine Digital
Finn and Adam at Fray Studio for animated graphics
MarcusHall Props for providing a base for distribution
Thank you all.
Theatre Support Fund+ Team