A technical apprenticeships scheme aimed at closing a skills gap in the sector is being launched by Trafalgar Entertainment Group, the company formed by Howard Panter and Rosemary Squire.
Launched initially as a pilot programme, the scheme will employ two paid apprentices, for 21 months each.
One will be based at the company’s main home in London, Trafalgar Studios, while the other will be part of the events team at Stagecoach Theatre Arts, the performing arts schools network TEG took over in July.
It is part of a collaboration with National College Creative Industries, which specialises in training the next generation of backstage staff for theatre.
The scheme follows repeated warnings of a skills gap among backstage roles within the industry, which threaten the future of theatre.
As part of their placements, the two TEG apprentices will learn how to provide technical support for the construction, rehearsal, presentation and removal of a live performance.
Squire, who announced the scheme as she delivered the keynote speech at the NCCI graduation ceremony on October 4, said the placements would focus on training young people “with skills suited to a 21st-century technology-based workplace”.
She added: “Howard and I have always believed in building creative skills for the future and growing a workforce from the grassroots up. It’s therefore essential that employers offer unique training opportunities for young people wishing to pursue careers in the creative industries.”
Panter and Squire founded Ambassador Theatre Group but left in 2015 when they were replaced as joint chief executives by Mark Cornell. They subsequently set up TEG, maintaining the ownership of Trafalgar Studios to run it independently.