Norwich Theatre makes #RefundRescue appeal to theatregoers

Norwich Theatre chief executive Stephen Crocker has appealed to loyal theatregoers to help the organisation through the difficulties it will face with the closure of its three venues across the city during the Coronavirus crisis.

He has asked them to consider donating the cost of their ticket on cancelled shows, rather than asking for a refund or credit note, to help mitigate the loss of income from programmed shows as well as from the popular bars and restaurants at the Theatre Royal, Playhouse and Stage Two.

Mr Crocker said: “Our audiences and local community are the lifeblood of Norwich Theatre’s three venues. We are extremely grateful for their loyalty and dedication and for the support they have been giving us over many years.

“As a registered charity with no public subsidy, we rely on ticket sales for 80% of our income and the bars and restaurants in our buildings for a further 15%.”

He appealed directly to the organisation’s customers, saying: “As we enter an open-ended period of closure, we are facing particularly challenging times ahead and ask for your support and generosity to help us to survive this crisis and continue the work we do once it is over.

“While we appreciate there is disappointment at not seeing eagerly-anticipated shows, our #RefundRescue Campaign asks theatregoers to kindly consider donating the cost of their ticket rather than requesting a credit note or refund.

This will support our venues to recover from the impact of closure caused by the Coronavirus and will allow us to ensure we hold together the incredible staff team that are part of why audiences and customers love our venues so much.”

Mr Crocker said supporting the campaign was very easy to do and where shows are cancelled at Theatre Royal, bookers will receive an email which will ask them whether they would like a refund, a credit to their account or if they would like to donate the value of their tickets. The Box Office team then do the rest.

Norwich Theatre is in the process of working with promoters and producers to explore all options for rescheduling shows. Where shows cannot be rescheduled cancellations will be announced and customers contacted on a show-by-show basis.

He has asked bookers to be patient and wait for the theatre to contact them to support the Box Office team at this intense and busy time.

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