National Theatre Day

It’s hard for many in the events industry, especially those in theatre. Our heart goes out to all who are being made redundant, losing freelance work, or facing the closure of their business.

Our own little Parabola Arts Centre is looking very lonely, with a full-scale musical set on stage, almost completed ahead of the College’s production due to be performed this week. Fingers crossed the girls’ hard work will not go to waste and the show can be revisited in November.

Whilst we are all stuck indoors looking for ways to entertain the family and distract ourselves from the heart-breaking news, the arts are rallying together to provide online screenings and interactive performances. Here’s our recommendations:


Cirencester talent with The Barn Theatre

This fantastic Cirencester theatre has been producing top-class regional theatre and performing arts education in a former 1940s Nissen hut since its revamp in 2018.

To celebrate today’s World Theatre Day, they will be live streaming their Built by Barn production of Henry V at 6pm via Facebook . Having watched this live last year, I can’t wait to revisit this modern take on a powerful play featuring West End stars.


And for something a little less serious, Gifford’s own Tweedy the Clown will be sharing his unique brand of family-friendly fun with us every Wednesday at 12pm across the Barn Theatre’s Facebook, Twitter  and YouTube accounts.


Revisit the classics with The Royal Shakespeare Company, Royal Opera House, Bolshoi and more..

Why not enjoy these majestic international venues from the comfort of your sofa with Marquee TV . This on demand service is currently offering 30 days free, enough time to gorge your fill of scintillating Shakespeare, outstanding opera and breath-taking ballet.


Bring the theatre to your living room with more online opportunities

Gather the kids for The Wind in the Willows recorded live at the London Palladium.

Get your laughing gear going with the ever-adaptable Showstopper! The Improvised Musical . This merry band of seasoned pros improvise a new show each night, so improvising on the back of a Corona crisis is a walk in the park!

Prefer the silver screen? The BFI  have an archive of films available for free.

Go back stage with the National Theatre via their How we made it series on YouTube


Sing away the blues with the Great British Home Chorus

Theatre and the arts are not just a spectator sport! Gareth Malone has long been a national favourite, uniting communities such as work colleagues, military wives, and even celebrity chefs through choral singing. This is your chance to be part of the choir with his Great British Home Chorus. Singing is good for the soul, and studies have shown it can even improve the brain functionality of seniors suffering from conditions such as Parkinson’s disease, so give those vocal chords a good airing (maybe warn the neighbours first!)


Get the creative juices going with the BBC’s Writersroom

And for those of you who’d always wanted to try your hand at writing, the BBC are looking for submissions for their InterConnected series. Submission ends on Monday 30th March, so get scribbling on your 5-10 minute script featuring video conferencing, to be in with a chance to see your own story come to life!


Watch this space for the BBC’s Culture in Quarantine

The BBC are already adapting to the crisis, as seen above, but they are also recognising the need to provide a strong arts and culture provision for the benefit of our nation’s mental health. They are working on a virtual festival of the arts called Culture in Quarantine – coming soon to a front room near you.


Stay in, stay safe and stay positive!