On Wednesday 18 November, theatres, amateur groups, arts companies and audiences from across the UK and beyond will take part in the second #LoveTheatreDay on Twitter – the award-winning social media celebration of all things stage.
It’s a 24-hour Twitter event, open to all. British, European and global organisations are invited and the event – run in partnership by the Guardian Culture Professionals Network, Twitter UK and CultureThemes – aims to reach a wide range, from the people behind the scenes who make the magic happen, to the audiences who put bums on seats every week.
But why does theatre need our love? As David Brownlee, the then exec director of UK Theatre, wrote for last year’s event: “Theatres play an enormous role in the community that goes far beyond what’s on stage.” They bolster local areas financially, support the development of children, provide opportunities of paid work and give us all a rare chance to share experiences with our local community, he said.
#LoveTheatreDay will give organisations an opportunity to shout about the great work they do, both on and off stage. It will help theatres forge relationships with new audiences and others working in the sector. Most of all, it will drive positive, active engagement.
There will be one main hashtag: #LoveTheatreDay. This will guide the overall conversation throughout the day, with three sub-hashtags to highlight specific themes:
#BackStage (10am–12pm) will offer audiences and other arts pros a glimpse into how a production comes together in the weeks and months leading up to the big night.
#AskATheatre (3–5pm) will offer a unique opportunity for theatre fans and aspiring actors to hear first-hand from the individuals and groups that make the magic happen.
#Showtime (7–10pm) will give those who can’t make it to a theatre the chance to sit in the “virtual stalls” to experience a performance, or several, via Twitter.
NB: times indicated are UK time.
Theatres and theatre lovers worldwide are invited to sign up to the event.
Image: A celebration of theatre … Angus Imrie, Gugu Mbatha-Raw and Amanda Lawrence in Nell Gwynn at Shakespeare’s Globe. Photograph: Tristram Kenton for the Guardian