The aim of these grants is to support emerging producers and production companies, and specifically ensure they can employ (and correctly pay) as many people as possible. The grants are for producing plays – both new plays and revivals, and are intended to enable productions that would otherwise be financially unviable due to cast size.
In 2019, as a present to himself for his 80th birthday Ian McKellen went on a tour of the UK visiting 87 venues with a one-man show. The aim was to raise money for each venue he visited. Later that year the show transferred to the West End for 88 performances.
The final two shows were captured by the producing team in conjunction with NT Live. In 2021 the show became, and remains, available to watch on Amazon Prime for customers in UK and Ireland and globally via NT @ Home.
All remaining profits from both the West End run and the future broadcast including any salary Ian would have received will be distributed to help emerging producers by providing a one-off grant. This grant is intended to form part of the capitalisation and also running costs by being used to pay actors wages. This grant can be up to £25,000 as long as the Producer pays the cast at least equity minimum but total actor salaries must be in line with industry norms in the venue where the work is being presented.
WHAT’S THE AIM?
- To support emerging producers and production companies.
- To allow producers to employ and correctly pay as many people as possible.
- To enable productions that would otherwise be financially unviable due to cast size. Grants will favour those productions that break even BECAUSE of this money.
- The grant is for producing plays – both new plays and revivals.
WHO CAN APPLY?
- The Producer or Production Company must have already produced one production in the UK in a venue that is a member of UK Theatre or the London Fringe for more than 21 consecutive paid public performances.
- The producer or production company must have paid the cast and crew equity minimum or above.
- Your production must have a cast of at least 6 actors and 1 of these actors must be a recent graduate of an accredited theatre training course (graduated in 2020, 2021 or 2022).
TERMS OF THE GRANT
- If successful the grant will be paid to you the week before you begin rehearsals and upon proof that the remainder of the capitalisation is in place.
- If successful then you are no longer eligible to apply for any future funding rounds. If unsuccessful then you may reapply in the future.
- Your work must be taking place in a venue that is a member of UK Theatre (this can be a single venue or as part of a tour).
- The grant will go towards paying actors salaries up to £25,000 and including any NI contributions or other costs related to salary. The grant can cover salaries during rehearsals and playing weeks. In your application you will need to outline how much you are paying people and for how long the contract will run.
- There is a possibility that your application might be eligible and yet you are still unsuccessful due to demand. Make sure you allow enough time between applying and start date or have other means of funding available.
- Your proposed production must commit to paying cast and crew appropriate union rates but may not be used to over inflate salaries.
- Grants awarded in sole discretion of the judging panel.
- By submitting your application you agree that ATG may keep your contact details on file
- All application forms and supporting documentation will be treated as confidential and will not be used for any other purpose except in considering the application for the grant. Only contact details will be held on file and all supporting documentation will be deleted six months after each funding round.
A new round of funding will be announced in due course, and a deadline for applications will be identified then.
Shortlisted candidates will be contacted by phone and some may be required to attend an interview.
Starting out in the professional theatre, ambition and good intentions are rarely enough. Even the most successful production, in a small theatre, cannot hope to raise sufficient funds to cover costs. Too many emerging producers and newly-trained actors live on the bread-line, discouraged as well as hungry. Hence this scheme to support work that would otherwise be done on the cheap or not done at all. Our grants provide the dignity of work for a living wage.Sir Ian McKellen