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BLOG: Martha (Kickstart Placement)

Today marks three months of my Kickstart scheme placement at Half Moon – how time flies! It’s been such a fantastic experience so far, and I’ve loved being able to use my passion for live performance in a professional setting and learning about all the different processes that go into running a young people’s theatre.

As Marketing and Box Office assistant, I’ve been getting stuck into a whole range of different tasks. The varied role has had me tweeting, writing captions for the Happened 1990 Youth Theatre films made throughout lockdown, and being able to attend All Points East In the NBHD festival.

A particular highlight of my time at Half Moon has been watching the Narratives of Empathy and Resilience showcase, which ended up being one of the first pieces of live performance I’d seen since before COVID. Being able to spend a day watching theatre, talking about our responses to the pieces and soaking up the atmosphere of so many talented artists sharing their enthusiasm was a real treat!

Martha, Sam and Stephen with brochures
Martha, Technical Manager Sam and Communications Manager Stephen with the delivery of the Autumn Season brochures

In the last couple of weeks I’ve started picking up the Box Office Assistant side of the role. It’s been fantastic to finally welcome back audiences to Half Moon for the first time in almost eighteen months for our Autumn Season. After working with the Communications Manager, Stephen, towards our printed brochure and social media marketing, it feels really rewarding to be able to see those audiences come back through our doors! Saturdays at Half Moon can be incredibly busy, with three youth theatres running upstairs alongside the performances in the theatre, but the lively atmosphere is welcome after so many months without being able to participate in in-person activities.

It goes without saying that COVID has created a tough situation for many in the arts, and I know that a lot of people will have found themselves in a similar position to myself. Before the pandemic hit, I was fresh out of university and directing a show for the Brighton Fringe Festival, feeling hopeful about a future in the theatrical industry. With that project cancelled and a few months of sporadic unemployment under my belt, this placement with Half Moon has been not only a relief but a truly valuable experience. It’s been so interesting to engage with theatre from a different angle, and to see all the amazing work Half Moon does in local schools and the community.

I’m looking forward to what the next three months will bring!

Pictured above: Highlights from All Points East in the NBHD, the 1990 | 2020 Youth Theatre films, Narratives of Empathy and Resilience artist development programme and the Snapped 1990 project, showing an image of Commercial Road 30 years ago. 

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