Back on the BOAT

Brighton Open Air Theatre, affectionately known as BOAT, burst back onto the Brighton scene post-lockdown with a celebration of local artists at the end of July. Since then, they've been taking advantage of the summer to present a jam-packed season of live performances, attracting stand up stars such as Shappi Khorsandi, Al Murray and Tim Vine, as well as improv from Mischief Theatre, Shakespeare adaptations and much more. With new COVID measures in place, we asked Will Mytum, BOAT General Manager, what to expect from an outdoor performance in 2020.

We're spoilt this year with an amazing array of companies

BB: What did you do during lockdown?

WM: Planned for reopening! It was actually very busy here during lockdown, as it hit just as we were ramping up for our season. Rescheduling, extending the season, introducing Covid-secure measures. Everything we could to get ready for reopening.

BB: What are some of the COVID measures you’ve introduced?

WM: Distanced queues, each bubble personally seated by a volunteer, a one-way system for the toilets, hand sanitiser, no cash. Being outdoors helps a lot too!

BB: You have a policy of continuing come rain or shine (except for extreme weather), what’s your advice to audiences battling the elements?

WM: We all know what the British weather can do, so be prepared! Sun cream and raincoats, umbrellas and picnic blankets. Check the forecast on the morning of the show you're coming to, and bring whatever you think you might need.

BB: Who are you most looking forward to welcoming back to BOAT?

WM: We're spoilt this year with an amazing array of companies, but we did really miss out on Shakespeare's Globe, which is normally such a seasonal highlight. We really hope they're able to return next year.

BB: What show would you love to see at BOAT in the future?

WM: The dream would be to commission an original piece that's written specifically for us. And all I'll say on that is ... watch this space!

Since you’re here…

… we have a small favour to ask. We don't want your money to support a hack's bar bill at Abattoir, but if you have a pound or two spare, we really encourage you to support a good cause. If this article has either helped you discover a gem or avoid a turkey, consider doing some good that will really make a difference.

You can donate to the charity of your choice, but if you're looking for inspiration, there are three charities we really like.

Mama Biashara
Kate Copstick’s charity, Mama Biashara, works with the poorest and most marginalised people in Kenya. They give grants to set up small, sustainable businesses that bring financial independence and security. That five quid you spend on a large glass of House White? They can save someone’s life with that. And the money for a pair of Air Jordans? Will take four women and their fifteen children away from a man who is raping them and into a new life with a moneymaking business for Mum and happiness for the kids.
Donate to Mama Biashara now

Theatre MAD
The Make A Difference Trust fights HIV & AIDS one stage at a time. Their UK and International grant-making strategy is based on five criteria that raise awareness, educate, and provide care and support for the most vulnerable in society. A host of fundraising events, including Bucket Collections, Late Night Cabarets, West End Eurovision, West End Bares and A West End Christmas continue to raise funds for projects both in the UK and Sub-Saharan Africa.
Donate to Theatre MAD now

Acting For Others
Acting for Others provides financial and emotional support to all theatre workers in times of need through the 14 member charities. During the COVID-19 crisis Acting for Others have raised over £1.7m to support theatre workers affected by the pandemic.
Donate to Acting For Others now