LW Theatres has committed to paying all staff – including those employed on a show-by-show basis – and has confirmed no redundancies are currently planned while the coronavirus outbreak continues.
It comes as Andrew Lloyd Webber sent an email to staff in which he acknowledged “how very difficult it is to be denied the ability to be together, not only with our theatre community, but more importantly with many of our loved ones” at this time.
Rebecca Kane Burton, chief executive of LW Theatres, has also written to all staff outlining the company’s plans for the foreseeable future.
“Our priority is to steer our staff and the company through these unprecedented times, so that we can continue to serve customers and provide jobs in the West End for many years to come. I want to thank all our staff for their support, understanding and commitment,” she said.
She added: ”As things stand we are not making any redundancies. All our staff will either continue to work or become furloughed workers. We have honoured our commitment to pay staff including those who normally only work with us when shows are running. We will continue to support our staff and help them through these difficult times.”
In his own address to staff, Lloyd Webber said “we have all been affected in a multitude of ways by the horrific and invisible virus which has a stranglehold on the world right now”.
“I know that all of you will be feeling the effects of this pandemic and striving to cope with all that it throws at you. My thoughts are with you all,” he said.
He added: “We all continue to be immensely grateful for your ongoing support, understanding and commitment to the wonderful world of live musical theatre; which we all know has the power to uplift and brighten souls, but that has been taken away from us as we work together to stave off the spread of Covid-19.
“We recognise how very difficult it is to be denied the ability to be together, not only with our theatre community, but more importantly with many of our loved ones. Thank you for all you have done, and continue to do to support each other and get us all through this terrible time.”
Lloyd Webber also said the company would do its “level best to deliver all of those wonderful and ambitious plans you set out to tackle in 2020”.
Earlier this week, ATG announced its intentions for the company during this time, with the majority of its staff put on paid leave and the leadership team working without salaries.