Every play programmed by London’s Royal Court before the lockdown will be staged when the venue is able to reopen, with artistic director Vicky Featherstone vowing not to “cancel any of our work”.
She said that since lockdown began, the theatre has been “concentrating on our writers”.
“We decided early on that we could not cancel any of our work – the plays are too precious. Each play we programme is the result of a long process of careful thought, research, personal passion and comes with great emotional cost from the writer as well as the nurturing, challenging, coaxing and support and ultimately belief that comes from us. So we will be putting on all the plays we have already programmed as and when we are able to get back into the theatre,” she said.
Featherstone made the commitment in an email sent to supporters of the venue, in which she revealed that 69% of people who had booked to see shows had either donated the money to the theatre or accepted credit to see their chosen show another time.
“I cannot tell you what this understanding and loyalty has meant and the huge difference this has made to our financial situation at this time,” she said.
Featherstone also announced the launch of Court at Home, which she described as “something light and playful in strange, challenging times”.
Members of the public are being asked to select a line from a Royal Court play that has resonated with them and to stage it in their home, alongside an activity that is now part of their “new normal”.
The Royal Court has also announced it will be sharing writing exercises by playwrights who have previously led its writers’ groups, starting with Leo Butler.
Meanwhile, the theatre has been getting 100 writers to have a “series of online conversations together”, with the aim of creating “intimate exchanges” between creatives in lockdown.