Chads Theatre Company is part of a national initiative launched by Theatres Trust to prevent the permanent closure of hundreds of UK theatres.
Chads is run entirely by volunteers who pay a subscription to take part in the running of the theatre and putting on plays. Whilst performances on stage are central to what Chads does there are many more, less glamorous, activities needed to maintain the building's facilities and staff the offstage roles during a play. All these roles are carried out with great pride and joy by our members.
At its core Chads is about community and friendship. All are welcome to join us.
A Season of Centenary Celebrations
The dramatic society was formed in 1920 and this year Chads celebrates it's 100th season. We were preparing plans to refurbish our Foyer and Bar prior to the start of the season in September 2020 and had hoped to make our 2020/21 season a season of celebration. Covid-19 had other plans for us and so we have been dark since lockdown in March 2020 losing valuable income from cancelled performances and theatre outside lets.
Our current theatre building was built in the 1950s by an enthusiastic team of members. The building has constantly been improved to enhance the enjoyment of our audiences and the community groups who hire our facility. Our studio is used weekly by a drama school. Local dance schools use our stage for their annual shows. Our auditorium is used by the Poynton Royal British Legion Concert Band to perform a fund raising concert each year. We support local Charities by arranging bucket collections during the run of a play and typically once or twice a season enable them to sell their own tickets to enjoy an outing to one of our final dress rehearsals as part of their fund raising efforts. We have also hosted rock bands and a Bangladesh cultural day. Our publicity and front of house teams do a sterling job encouraging new groups to hire the available space.
There is an extensive and very popular wardrobe department which dresses all our shows. In normal times the wardrobe opened weekly to hire out costumes to other amateur theatres and to members of the public wanting something special for fancy dress parties and special occasions. Just one more way that Chads serves the community of which it is part. Unfortunately during lockdown and for the foreseeable future the logistics of hiring and sanitising the costumes means we will lose this valuable income too.
The show must go on
Chads Theatre has a membership of 150 and typically welcomes over 6000 members of the public to its 6 main stage and 3 Studio productions every season. In addition to these shows, each season our Youth Section produces a play which is greatly enjoyed by family and friends. In recent years our studio theatre, seating 50, has offered 3 plays per season to great acclaim from the Greater Manchester Drama Festival winning the Adjudicator’s Award in 2020 - “For ongoing commitment to challenging and high quality studio productions”
Our aim is to reopen for our scheduled production at the end of January 2021 subject to Government guidance. With your help we hope to make use of the extra downtime period to carry out the intended refurbishment of the Foyer and Bar in a socially distanced way by having fewer people on site at the same time than in normal times.
How you can help
We have had a 30 year phased programme of improvements to the building called our Centenary Project. Many years of fundraising activities and with some help from grants have raised the funds to carry out this programme. Over the years we have extended the building, increased the bar and foyer area, built a new wardrobe storage area and in the last 2 years we renewed the roof, installed an air conditioning/heating system and a new lighting rig.
Now our foyer and lounge areas need refurbishing. These recent renovations were extremely costly and used up all of our project reserves. We are determined to keep up with the programme of enhancements of Chads whilst protecting the financial stability of our society. With your help and Crowdfunder we are convinced that crowdfunding will enable us to raise the money necessary for these improvement and fund the next stage of our development. Please take a look at our rewards and pledge what you are able.
Thank you on behalf of Chads members,
About Save Our Theatres
In villages, towns and cities across the country, theatres are at the heart of their community. Places to come together, to be inspired and be entertained. Theatres are where our best-loved actors learn their craft and thousands of others learn valuable skills.
But we risk losing this forever.
Theatres saw their main source of income disappear in an instant when they closed in March in response to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Six months later, we still don’t know when they will be able to reopen fully. A decision won’t be made until November at the earliest – too late for most to put on their annual pantomime, which often provides the income to support the theatre for the rest of the year.
This ongoing uncertainty puts theatres in a perilous situation. The government’s bailout is spread across all cultural organisations and certainly won’t be enough to save all of the UK’s theatres.
Every day theatres are facing the tough decision to make staff redundant and to close their doors until next year. And there is a real risk that those closures could be permanent.
Without urgent support, we could lose our nation’s amazing theatres. Please help us to make sure our theatres survive this crisis and will be there to be enjoyed by future generations.