We hope that this newsletter finds you safe and healthy in these extraordinary and very difficult circumstances. We’re writing to you now to update you all on our present situation.
1. New regulations.
The Committee recently met online, and we are working to absorb recently published guidelines on what is permitted and what is advisable concerning public gatherings, especially, of course, regarding theatre.
We are aware that the Portuguese Government is likely to refine or alter some details in their new rules and advice; there has been considerable protest over some issues by some prominent theatres. Rules will evolve over the next few weeks and months.
However, the Ministério da Cultura’s current rules and guidelines, which are applicable to most spaces where people gather (places of worship, concert halls, indoors and outdoors, as well as theatres), make using most traditional theatre venues extremely difficult to imagine.
Physical distancing between audience members, both in the auditorium and on entering and exiting the theatre foyer, rules to protect actors, on dressing room space (separate dressing rooms for each actor!), and on rigorous cleaning requirements after rehearsals will also make ‘normal’ theatre life, in the sense known before Covid 19, all but impossible for some time to come.
2. Future productions
We are keen to get back to as much activity as possible – and as soon as possible.
We are therefore looking into how best to be creative in the current situation, and under the current rules.
We have started to think about
– outdoor venues,
– venues which already have, or will be installing, at least some of the requirements of the current rules,
– possibilities of making productions available online, and
– producing radio drama. We already have some proposals brewing on this.
Any proposals or suggestions you have, bearing in mind that the venue/medium of rehearsal and performance will need to be tailored to current conditions, will be most welcome. Please send in your ideas!
Like all other theatres, we will also need to check on the (quickly evolving) copyright situation, especially where online live-casting is concerned.
Of course, our AGM, scheduled for March, had to be postponed.
As information, and even the legislation under which we have to work, is still coming in and being formulated, we felt that, rather than trying to fix an AGM as soon as possible, it would be better to wait until September. By that time, we expect greater clarity concerning what activities we can plan, and where the meeting could take place.
4. Future plans regarding intermediary and long-term home for the Lisbon Players.
– ADCEO. We are continuing to talk to ADCEO while our props, wardrobe, and equipment are stored there. The space has no current license to perform. Our original thinking was to obtain a license and then use their auditorium as an interim venue, on the way to another home, being discussed with CML, with whom we are still in contact.
It is now possible that more theatre venues may become available in the light of Covid 19. We are investigating these but are so far unsure of what may be possible for the short, medium and long term.
The technically expert members of our Committee are putting together solutions for modernising our ticket system, receiving online payments for memberships, as well as matters such as streaming or live-casting of productions. We also plan to keep a digital archive of past productions.
Regardless of how the pandemic develops in the future, we are sure that these initiatives will bring long term benefit to LP.
We very much hope that you find this information helpful and interesting. As said earlier, we really want to get up and running again as soon as possible, however that may be. If you want to know more, concerning how we are handling matters, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org – and send in your suggestions for productions, whether radio or live or filmed. Please address your suggestions with the e-mail subject line- ‘LP Production Suggestions’.
In the meantime, we’ll continue to keep you all updated on our progress, with further newsletters.
Take care of yourselves, and long live theatre!
The LP Committee
The new structure for the 2019/20 committee, elected at the AGM, is as follows:
Paula Lobo Antunes
Please do not hesitate to contact us.