PREVIOUS PLACEMENTS

Kate Craggs
Marketing Work Placement, 2011

Why did you apply to Almeida?
I had recently graduated from University of Bristol studying English and Drama and was keen to get as much practical theatre industry experience as possible. As a frequent audience member, I was already aware of the Almeida’s prestige within the London theatre scene and admired its diverse in-house production repertoire. The Almeida Theatre Work Placement appealed to me in particular as it was over a two month period and, due to the nature of the Almeida’s production schedule, would allow me insight into a production’s full campaign from start to finish. I had some arts marketing experience prior to my internship, but this was largely Fringe or student theatre based and so was very cast-related and concerned with immediate promotions; I was keen therefore to gain more structured, office-based marketing experience.

What was your role at the Almeida?
Marketing Work Placement
 
What were your duties on the placement?
Regular duties included collating press cuttings, sending the Almeida’s weekly Pre-Visit and Thank You customer emails, updating the website and helping to write promotional copy for emails, leaflets and programmes. During my time at the Almeida, I also had the opportunity to sit in on marketing strategy meetings, offer creative visual input on promotional images, meet the cast and production teams, source and help create biographies, as well as go to lots of theatre productions!
 
What was your experience of the placement?
I can say without exaggeration that I enjoyed every minute. The Almeida Theatre staff are all incredibly passionate and dedicated to what they do; everyone was so helpful and friendly and took genuine pleasure in teaching me new skills and procedures, going out of their way to make sure I got as much from the placement as possible. Right at the start, my line manager asked me what I wanted to learn and so tailored my tasks to give me increased exposure to these aspects. Having done several internships before, I hadn’t expected to be entrusted with so many valued and important tasks and I was extremely grateful and found it so rewarding to be given such trust and encouragement. My time spent on the placement was always entertaining and a great chance to meet a wealth of interesting and like-minded people.

What do you feel you gained from the placement?
Before the placement my theatre marketing experience was very ‘rough and ready’ and largely customer facing. I gained a strong understanding of the strategic and logical inception of a marketing campaign and its budget. I learnt a huge amount about communication with an audience, online and through social media. On a practical level, I gained highly enhanced IT skills and now (I think) understand HTML coding which was completely foreign before! As expected, I gained a stronger awareness of just how much effort and planning goes into that tube poster that you see out of the corner of your eye on the escalator and the meticulous deadlines and careful strategy behind its placement!

What skills did you learn / use during your placement?
I was keen to gain practical computer skills during my time at the Almeida and by updating the website and writing/uploading blogs, I can safely say that this has been achieved. Time management is essential, especially during the run up to a production as deadlines are frequently juggled between printers, Development and Press, so prioritising is key. I certainly needed a good eye for detail as one aspect of any Marketing role is to proof-read a mass of copy, therefore you need to be able to see something with fresh eyes, even when you’ve read it countless times before. Evidently, a role in the theatre and particularly in the Marketing department involves talking to people and so good personal and communication skills are a must. 

Are there any particular incidents that stand out from your time at the Almeida?
My internship coincided with the Almeida Summer Festival 2011, which required a slightly different marketing campaign to other main-house productions. Being immortalised as a head and shoulders in a Festival Trailer is a good story to tell! I think a particular highlight was writing copy for the Festival in a popular theatre blog, as seeing your words in print waiting to be read by many is quite a thrill! Another personal highlight was working closely with Belarus Free Theatre during the Almeida Festival; the company risk their lives to produce innovative and challenging theatre and it was a privilege to see them in the midst of their inspirational artistic process.



Kim Brewin
Administrative Placement at Almeida 2009 

Why did you apply to Almeida?
I am currently studying Arts Management and Events Management at University and wanted to undertake an internship to gain a better understanding of the industry and further my career. I was also working at the bar and knew how prestigious the theatre was and how lucky I would be if I managed to secure an internship with the Almeida.

What was your role at the Almeida?
Intern to General Manager

What were your duties on the placement?
Drafting of contracts, filing, implementation of a new internship scheme, database management, research, summer festival assistance, script binding, general office duties.

What was your experience of the placement?
Fantastic and extremely beneficial. I discovered many instances directly connected to modules I was studying at University. The employees at the Almeida are extremely encouraging and helpful.

What do you feel you gained from the placement?
The placement reinforced that the arts industry is where I would like to pursue my career and allowed me to gain an insight into the many different paths within the arts.

What skills have you learned / used during your placement?
The internship has been extremely useful to my university degree. I now have a better understanding of the arts industry which has really helped with my current modules - many of the case studies I have written have been based on direct experiences from the Almeida.

Are there any particular incidents that stand out from your time at the Almeida?
Drafting my first contract was amazing, I really felt involved with the process of staging a production, being able to attend production meetings and at the end of my internship I felt really appreciated by the whole Almeida team.

 

 
Arts Council England ASP Group