When I was in my final year of university, I was asked to put forward a 5-year-plan. (Coincidently, this marks my five years and I haven’t done too badly!) In the discussion, the topic of location came up – and I firmly stated I wanted to stay in the North. For me, I had enough going on in Liverpool outside of theatre world to stay; I was involved with a local rugby club I’d helped from the early days, I worked in a small studio theatre which I loved with all my heart, I had my friends and family around me, and I was working with a group of people who liked me, and I liked them. Why would I want to go elsewhere? I was happy where I was. I wasn’t planning to risk that just to say I worked in London. People seem to think that all theatre practitioners aspire to the West End, but I had no such desires. The only time I wanted to be near the West End for work was when Cursed Child was announced – and as time went on and I had to defend myself each time I had to explain why I had no desire to go to London, something inside me grew to hate the idea of working in London.
I once read that if you had to write a disclaimer on a blog, you shouldn’t be writing the blog because you know it’s wrong – but I’m starting with a disclaimer. Theatre friends, if you think this blog is about you, it isn’t. It’s about the jobs I kept secret, it’s about the jobs I did when I’d only ever lit school shows before, the jobs where I didn’t know any better. I doubt the people this blog is about will ever, ever read what I have to say.