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In order to support the national effort to control the COVID-19 pandemic, our beloved theatre is currently closed.

A lot of people don’t know that The Old Vic is a charity. And, unlike many of our industry peers, The Old Vic does not receive any government subsidy, which means that we don’t get regular financial help from the local authority or the Arts Council. We have no safety net. Every penny we need to produce our great work on stage, support our projects with young people and the community, and even keep our lights on, we have to raise ourselves. We do this largely through ticket sales but on top of that we still have to raise £4 million a year through donations and partnerships to ensure our iconic theatre remains an indispensable part of London’s cultural landscape.

 In light of the theatre’s unique funding position, closure could be financially devastating for The Old Vic. For that reason, the majority of The Old Vic team have been furloughed until 31 May whilst the theatre is closed and the remaining skeleton staff are operating a reduced working week. All of the staff have also voluntarily taken a pay cut for the next six months to help safeguard The Old Vic’s future.

Theatre is on an ever-diminishing list of group experiences that provides a sense of community and connectedness. We are certain that in the weeks and months ahead when we all face isolation, the need to reconnect and share with one another will become increasingly important. Our theatre would not be here without our supporters, and we will fight hard to keep it for everyone, as we will need it more than ever when we come out the other side of this.

If you would like to make a donation to support your local London theatre to survive in these incredibly challenging times and sustain as a beacon of the British arts with a strong social mission at its heart, just as it has always been for the last two centuries, we would be extraordinarily grateful.

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