SCDA One Acts cancelled

Mar 13 2020 | By More

Finals and Eastern Division round cancelled but EPT take precautions

The Scottish finals and the Eastern Division round of the SCDA One Act Festival have been cancelled as the Byre Theatre is cancelling all public events until Sunday May 31 2020.

However, Edinburgh People’s Theatre has issued a formal statement that its production of Men Should Weep at the Church Hill Theatre will still go ahead from Weds 18 to Sat 21 March 2020.

Ruth Finlay, Mandy Black and Ronnie Millar in EPT’s Men Should Weep. Pic: Graham Bell

The SCDA’s Eastern Division cancellations come about because the the University of St Andrews, which runs the Byre Theatre, has decided to cancel all performances and public events due to take place at the Byre from Sunday 15 March until Sunday 31 May 2020.

The National Executive of the SCDA subsequently decided, “after careful deliberation” to take the “difficult” decision to cancel the Scottish Final.

The SCDA says: “There were several factors that led us to this, but a key consideration was the closure of the Byre Theatre to public performances and hence the cancellation of the Eastern Divisional final.”

Edinburgh companies The Grads, with Breakfast for One, the Makars, with new play The Tide is Coming In and Leitheatre, with Virtual Reality, were all due to take part at the Byre on Friday 20 and Saturday 21 March 2020.

no moneys are due

Announcing the news on the SCDA’s facebook page, Martin Butler said: “We have had to cancel the Eastern Divisional Festival at the Byre as the University of St Andrews who own the theatre have decided to close until the 31st of May as a response to the Covid-19 situation. They have assured me that no moneys are due, however, we will not gain the revenue either.”

The SCDA will reimburse all tickets bought for the finals in full. However, those who have booked accommodation in Orkney should make their own arrangements.

The SCDA add that the remaining three Divisions have been advised to give serious consideration to cancelling their own finals.

Going ahead

The next amateur productions due to take place in Edinburgh are this coming week, with EdGAS staging Patience at the King’s Theatre, running Tues 17 to Sat 21, and EPT with Men Should Weep at the Church Hill Theatre, Weds 18 to Sat 21.

Whether Patience goes ahead will be determined by Capital Theatres, which runs the King’s and who are due to make a further statement about Covid-19 on Monday.

However, EPT has taken advice and issued a strong statement on its Facebook page concerning its determination to stage Men Should Weep and the protocols it is putting into place to ensure that it can do so.

EPT say: “Firstly, we want to express that we are committed to the welfare of our cast, production team and all of our potential audience members. This is of paramount importance.

“The most recent advice is for the public to avoid mass crowds of 500 people or over. As our production of Men Should Weep is due to take place at the Church Hill Theatre, we are able to share that the maximum capacity for the Church Hill is 353. Well under the suggested limit of ‘mass crowds’.

“It is with great delight we are in a position to say, this show will go on!!!”

safeguarding measures

The company say that the safeguarding measures put in place, including opening the auditorium half an hour early, and isolating the cast in their dressing rooms for 15 minutes after the end of the performance, will ensure the possibility of any potential spread is kept to a minimum.

EPT does have one major caveat to attendance, however, saying: “We ask that anyone who thinks they might be at risk of having caught the virus, or who has been self-isolating due to contamination fears, that they continue to isolate themselves and do not attend.”


SCDA Website:
SCDA Eastern Division Facebook Page: @ScdaEasternDivision.
Full EPT Statement concerning Men Should Weep: @EdinburghPeoplesTheatre.
Capital Theatres statement (12/3/20) on Covid-19:


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