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Socially Distanced Rehearsals

In September, SAVVY returned to our studio at Fairfield Halls, to run socially distanced drama workshops and prepare for a socially distanced Christmas panto.

All the policies were in place, we contacted all of our members, prepared a short ‘Welcome Back to SAVVY’ video … but still, we had no idea if any of this would work. What would socially distanced drama workshops look like? Could we re-create the excitement and energy of a SAVVY workshop while staying 2 meters away from each other? Can you direct a show where the cast can’t get close to each other?

Turns out, you can.

Our members have been demonstrating textbook social distancing, washing their hands, using hand sanitisers, wearing masks – and everyone in our extended SAVVY family have been so happy to be back in the studio.

Yes, things are different, but theatre and the Arts are all about re-invention and coming up with creative solutions to problems. It’s been like one large drama game of Balancing the Room!

Usually we bring our entire SAVVY company together at Christmas - that’s had to change. Instead of having everyone perform in the Jack & the Beanstalk panto, our Action Replay, 3-D, Take-2 and YounGrrr drama groups have been creating a film, exploring the question - so what exactly happened after the beanstalk fell? … and getting the perspective of the villages whose everyday life was interrupted by a giant beanstalk falling on their village!

The work has been incredible, and we can’t wait to showcase a rough edit of their film at the end of term.

Meanwhile, our Adult and Young companies are the ones busy rehearsing the panto, which this year is taking place in the foyer of Fairfield Halls – a beautifully big space, with staircases, balconies, mezzanine floors – perfect for keeping cast (and audience) socially distanced! We’ve also managed to include our Crisis Averted group in the show, with the development of a ‘supporting feature’ taking place at the beginning of the evening.

This entire year has seen shifts to everyone’s way of working and living and interacting – and so many performing arts companies are still delivering programmes of work online, that we feel incredibly lucky to have returned to our studio for face-to-face delivery.

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Shaë-Li Studios
Shaë-Li Studios
Jun 13, 2022

What a truly wonderful, amazing, LONG journey this was, preparing for “Jack and the Beanstalk: A Socially Distant Pantomime“. It was truly amazing meeting and acting with the new people that joined from the “So You Want To Be An Actor” programme and it was so great performing and preparing this play at the Ashcroft Theatre. It really gave us a feel good professional experience on stage. Savvy is truly amazing!

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