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V&A Theatre & Performance Collections and Staff Support Statement

News, 18 March 2021

V&A Theatre & Performance Collections and Staff Support Statement

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V&A Theatre & Performance Collections and Staff Support Statement

Whilst recognising the huge financial pressure that the V&A are under, due to closures during the Pandemic, the Society of British Theatre Designers (SBTD) wish to emphasise our support for the staff and collections of the Theatre and Performance Department during the current difficult cuts and negotiations.

When the V&A closed the Theatre Museum in 2007, the SBTD  had been due to install ‘Collaborators’ our latest exhibition of contemporary UK Design for Performance in its subterranean gallery. Instead we were invited to show it in the newly designated Theatre and Performance Galleries within the V&A while the new permanent exhibits were prepared. Three further SBTD exhibitions of the most up to date and wide ranging design for performance, including most recently, ‘Staging Places’ in 2019-20, have affirmed the place of Theatre and Performance within our National Museum of Art, Craft and Design. The popularity of the galleries with visitors of all ages, their value to students and teachers,  and the impact of performance styles and technologies on exhibitions throughout the museum has been notably successful.

By displaying the behind-the-scenes work of the countless UK freelancers and industry professionals working across the theatre, performance and arts sector here and internationally, the V&A makes visible the innovation, value and heritage of the UK’s performance industries and inspires the next generations of performance makers and audiences.

The SBTD fully supports the V&A staff in campaigning to safeguard the theatre and performance collections and to keep them accessible. There simply is no other archive of its kind, and its value cannot be overstated.

Please also see the statement of support for the department from PDEC; https://pdec.org.uk

“We stand with the @apac_ssn & @sibmas_org as in opposing the cuts to the @V&A Theatre & Performance Department. The V&A need to protect the jobs, specialist knowledge and skills of the curators and department staff.”

Please sign the petition and share and encourage anyone you know both within and without the industry to sign and follow.

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