Two weeks ago we took the decision to cease classes due to the outbreak of the Coronavirus. It wasn't a hard decision as the health and safety of the children who attend Levy Little Theatre classes is of paramount importance to us, along with, of course, the health of the other users of Levenshulme Old Library.
However, this decision did mean postponing the Easter show of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, something that disappointed and saddened me hugely as the TOTS and KIDS had put so much hard work, determination, imagination and bravery into the process of rehearsal.
This production was to be the largest LLT production yet. Not only have the numbers of children attending increased but the production values of the show were to be heightened with costumes, re-arranged seating, lighting and sound.
One of our KIDS dad's had made from scratch four heavy duty boxes that could be used as set. They were a labour of love and will be invaluable not only for the production of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory but also for all our future shows. We are so grateful!
Elli, our assistant, had been busy making our iconic shower curtain backdrops. Elli splits her creative time between drama and art and so this yearly shower curtain project is something she loves doing and she knows it will bring a lot of joy and excitement to the students. I had been knocking together doors with blinds, buying in material, props and costumes and trying to figure out how to programme lights. The All FM team, who work from the left side of the building, were offering support with sound equipment.
Everything is pretty much in place to get the show back on the road as soon as we are able to and so, after a few more rehearsals, we'll be back up and running - and we cannot wait!
In the meantime, we have gone online! Gemma has been recording mini-sessions for TOTS so that they can still see their favourite sock puppet Tonk Tonk Coco and they have been set a challenge to make their own story book this week. There have already been some fantastic creations.
The TOTS & KIDS have been invited to record themselves at home delivering 1 - 2 minutes of their characters' dialogue from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory which they will then send to Gemma to edit into a montage of their show. The hope is that they feel like their hard work has not been wasted and to give them hope that it will indeed happen - something for them to look forward to in these strange and unsettling times.
There are plans also for online YOUTH and ADULTS content. The ADULTS classes were due to start mid-April and, again, as soon as we are able to get back to it, these classes will begin.
So despite the lockdown we are forging on as best we can. Look out for updates on Instagram, Facebook and on our website. Wishing everyone health and happiness.