Voting underway to find UK’s most welcoming theatre

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Public voting has now opened to find the UK’s most welcoming theatre, as part of the My Theatre Matters! campaign.

My Theatre Matters! was launched earlier this year by The Stage, Equity and the Theatrical Management Association, and the most welcoming theatre award will be presented at the UK Theatre Awards in October.

More than 225 arts venues across the UK have entered themselves to take part in the public vote, which is being held in association with radio station Classic FM.

Editor of The Stage Brian Attwood said: “The My Theatre Matters! campaign is all about celebrating the wonderful achievements of theatres across the UK, so it makes perfect sense for the three campaign partners to run this award, which will give audiences a chance to show how much they value their local theatre.

“I’m delighted to see how many theatres have taken up the chance to be part of the vote, and I hope they will encourage thousands of audience members up and down the land to take part in this celebration of how much theatre is at the centre of UK life.”

To ensure a fair and competitive process, thepublic voting system will be weighted by theatre capacity, with the winner decided by the number of public votes divided by the number of venue seats.

TMA members were entered automatically but any other theatre that offers legal and fair terms to all performers and stage management, in line with or better than the Equity Fringe Agreement, was also able to register for the public vote. Venue registration is now closed.

Theatres taking part range from those with fewer than 100 seats, including London’s Gate and Half Moon Theatres and the Boo in Rossendale, to Edinburgh’s Playhouse, which has a capacity of more than 3,000.

To vote for the theatre that you think should win, visit www.classicfm.com/theatre. Voting closes on September 30. The winner will be announced on October 20.

Launched in March this year, My Theatre Matters! is a nationwide campaign aimed at galvanising public support for local theatres across the UK in response to extreme pressures on local government funding. To sign up to the campaign, see website www.mytheatrematters.com