Our Staff Entertainment Highs of 2020

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Given the events of 2020, live events have been few and far between – even shows that happened in January through to mid-March that were pre-pandemic feel like years ago now. However, there have still been a few highlights that deserve to be celebrated.

Whether you got to enjoy an arts event or two it in the times of before Covid-19 peaked, in between varying lockdowns when events were allowed, or online through a live stream – one thing that’s for sure is that the arts are important. Despite its constant hardship, the arts have remained resilient and creative in the ways they can continue to power through adversity. To celebrate the good parts of 2020, we asked our staff to send in some their live events memories from this year.

Editor of our sister publication InTouch, Sharon said “I saw The Sound of Music in Dublin on Saturday 25 January 2020. My fight and ticket to the show was a 50th birthday present from my brothers and I saw the show with my two sisters-in-law and my 16-year-old niece. At dinner the night before, I remember talking about the lockdown in Wuhan, which had just been announced. There was a sense of pending doom which we did our best to ignore and after a day of shopping and cocktails, we saw the show the very next day. I must admit it wouldn’t have been my first choice but I loved it. The staging was fabulous and the casting was perfect. It genuinely was like being ‘in’ the movie. We sang along to all the familiar classics and had a wonderful evening. I love going to the theatre because it’s a shared experience. I like sitting in an audience, feeling part of something we’re all experiencing together. I like the hustle and bustle before and after the show, the lights going down, the sense of anticipation, the energy… and the buzz when we leave, all wandering off in different directions but somehow connected by what we’ve shared.”

Back in August one of designers, Lizzy, enjoyed Norwich Rocks at Summertime Social “After such a long time of being unable to have any event like this, it seemed like this would be a summer without my trusty grass and wine stained picnic blanket; then came Summertime Social, the hero I needed. Finally feeling the sun on my closed eyes while lying on the blanket, hearing the music play, and taking in the sound of the (socially-distanced) ‘crowd’ laughing and chatting between sets was just perfect.”

Team member for all our publications, Marc added “I recently watched a live stream from The Bloom Lounge in Ipswich, as hosted by the Radical Lounge, which was really good – it genuinely felt like we were there at the bar with them”.

For me, as one of the regular theatregoers in the team I’ve really felt like a big part of my life has been missing this year. The thousands of cancellations has been a heart-breaking to witness and experience, but I’m so grateful for the many events and live-streams I’ve been able to see. I think aside from the world pre-pandemic, a highlight for me was seeing Jesus Christ Superstar at the Open Air theatre in Regent’s Park (London) in August. It was an experience unlike any other because it was one of the first shows to return, and it was my first live event after 5 and half months. I cried when the overture struck the first chord, simply because I felt so lucky to be there and supporting everyone and it had been too long for my liking. Everyone felt connected, and the love in the room (well, Open Air!) was so strong. I’ve admired the creativity and resilience of the arts industry, and these are just a few examples of how exciting and important these events are.

Fingers crossed for things to look up in 2021. Keep supporting the arts, and the venues associated as much as you can – we will be back, for the show must go on.

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