Bedlam wins sustainable theatre award

October 14, 2013 | By | Reply More

Bedlam only Scottish winner in UK backstage awards

Bedlam Theatre's Charlotte Hodge accepts the Award for Venue Sustainability. Photo © Alex Brenner

Bedlam Theatre’s Charlotte Hodge accepts the Award for Venue Sustainability. Photo © Alex Brenner

By Thom Dibdin

Bedlam Theatre has taken the Award for Venue Sustainability at the inaugural Technical Theatre Awards for backstage achievements in theatre.

The student-run venue was the only Scottish winner at the awards, which were held at the annual PLASA London live entertainment technology show at Docklands’ ExCeL.

Collecting the award, Charlotte Hodge, Bedlam’s Theatre Manager, said, “We feel that sustainability is so important to the future of theatre as a whole. We have many ideas on how to improve but, as a student-run theatre company, we don’t necessarily have the professional experience or the funds to know where to make a start on them.

“That is why this award is so important to us: it rewards our enthusiasm and our drive to make changes with the resources we have. This award will help us in our mission to make Bedlam Theatre a more sustainable venue for future members.”

The awards mostly went to people working on London west end productions such as Charlie and The Chocolate Factory. Although The ‘StageBitz’ Award for Outstanding Achievement in Prop Making went to Jonathan Hall, who has recently worked on White Christmas the Musical, which will be at the Festival Theatre this Christmas.

Theatre’s carbon footprint is coming under increasing scrutiny of late. There have positive initiatives, such as the National Theatre of Scotland’s production of The Last Polar Bears, which undertook its four week tour on bicycles. But on the whole, theatre tends to be very resource-heavy.

The major institutional force for change is Creative Carbon Scotland, the Edinburgh-based company which is working with over 70 cultural organisations across Scotland in various key areas including carbon management, behavioural change and advocacy for sustainable practice in the arts.

According to :entertaining sustainability, the UK-wide organisation which sponsored this award: “We were impressed by the way that Bedlam Theatre’s team demonstrates once again that it is perfectly feasible to present uncompromising and exciting live entertainment whilst continually innovating and experimenting to reduce the residual impact of its operations.

“Most importantly, we admired their candour and confidence in communicating their ideas and intentions to their audiences.”

ENDS

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