Cuts to Sheffield theatre work

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ONE job is to be lost and community engagement work reduced as a result of funding cuts to Sheffield theatres, it has emerged.

Sheffield Theatres, the company which runs the Lyceum and Crucible in the city centre, is to scrap its creative producer post after Sheffield Council withdrew about £100,000 of subsidies.

The work of its People’s Theatre company – designed to introduce young and less privileged communities to the venues – will be scaled back.

The cuts come as the company, founded in 2011, prepares to stage its most successful production to date.

Twenty Tiny Plays About Sheffield, which will run from Monday to Saturday, April 8 to 13, has already sold out.

Insiders fear the cuts – about 20 per cent of the usual council subsidy – will reinforce the idea the theatres are an elitist organisation.

One told The Star: “There is concern the good work built up in taking the theatre to the people of Sheffield could be undone, which would be a travesty.”

But Sheffield Theatres vowed to do its best to reduce the effects of the cuts.

Rebecca Willett, for Sheffield Theatres, said: “Over the last year, we’ve done a lot of work to restructure the team and make all kinds of savings.

“This puts us in a strong position, but does mean we need to put almost all our funded resources into producing amazing theatre in Sheffield.

“We have always done a great deal of work with communities, young people and in developing talent across the city and it’s this work we are now having to think about.”

Daniel Evans, Sheffield Theatres artistic director, said: “One of the reasons I believe in Sheffield Theatres is the way in which it works with the communities of Sheffield and the city region. It makes no sense to be in a position where we have to consider how we support some of this work but, in the current climate, it’s inevitable.”