Catching Trains to the Theatre

Lisa Parry, 16 September 2012

On the back of the Royal Court's decision to sell tickets only on the door for the new Jez Butterworth play (which will largely exclude out-of-London audiences due to the price of the train ticket), do theatres have a responsibility to local audiences or wider audiences?

There were mixed views on this point, but an annoyance that certain cities expected people to travel to them, whereas the people there wouldn't travel to other places to see work.

Should theatres team up with train/bus companies to sell tickets as part of an overall package? Would this bring in new audiences?

Is ‘theatre’ itself too exclusive a word? Is whatever we do not going to bring in new audiences because theatre is seen as a middle-class event?

The theatre experience - dinner, travel etc - is too expensive for most people.

How to change the mindset; how to get people to leave the house and go see a play; how to get them to feel it's for them without patronising them.

If this starts with education, then schools need to do more than just Shakespeare.

Sometimes travelling can be part of the whole experience.

If theatres are accepting public subsidy, then they should be thinking of their audience; of helping people get in to see plays and not just catering for an immediate wealthy locale.


Theatre, Education, train, education, theatre, cost