Selladoor’s subsidiary company Prime Pantomimes announces today that following the recent government announcement that it will not be possible to clarify guidelines for indoor performances until November, they will be postponing their 2020 pantomime season until 2021. Pantomimes include Aladdin at New Theatre Peterborough, Cinderella at Queen’s Theatre Barnstaple and Snow White at Stafford Gatehouse Theatre.
David Hutchinson CEO of Selladoor worldwide says “It is with huge disappointment that we have made the difficult decision to postpone our pantomime season for 2020 due to the ongoing COVID-19 Crisis. At this time, without guidance on when theatres will be able to fully reopen – we can’t further risk the business. Instead we are focusing on reimagining our business plan and strategising for the future in order for us to weather the next stage of this crisis. We are exploring options for bridging this period with imaginative programming and engagement work to ensure we maintain the crucial connection between our audiences and artists with our café open and an outdoor festival planned for the Landmark in Ilfracombe and cinema screenings at the New Theatre in Peterborough along with localised fundraising campaigns. The stark reality is that as our pantos fall victim to Covid – the business moves into a critical stage, as we focus on business continuity and survival”
Selladoor has confirmed that following a consultancy period 91 full time and casual members of staff will be leaving the business in August.
David continues ”The loss of our loyal staff members is devastating. We have been doing all we can to protect and retain all of our employees but the extended period of closure and a lack of any income has put us in an impossible position where we simply cannot afford to sustain our staffing levels. This news will come as a further blow to the many freelancers and creative practitioners that are involved in bringing our pantos to life each year, and for that I feel terrible. After a horrendous year for freelancers, we are actively thinking of how we build our world class freelance talent into our bridging programme as our theatre remain closed – as it’s vital we all survive this period together. The postponement of pantomime means that now, more than ever, we need you to continue to support the arts and your local venues”
Stuart Shanks – Head of Venues for Selladoor says “The support we have had from our local communities throughout this crisis has been amazing and we hope you can continue this support into next year. All tickets for this year’s pantomime season are transferrable to 2021 and we would ask you to consider this option to help enable us to come back bigger and stronger.”