Applications for £1,000 emergency grants are currently closed while we raise further funds.
The Theatre Artists Fund has been set up to provide emergency support for theatre workers and freelancers across the UK. It is for theatre professionals who are in need of urgent and critical financial support due to the devastating impact of Covid-19 on the theatre sector.
Our ambition for the fund is to provide short-term relief to hundreds of theatre workers and freelancers across the UK, and particularly those from underrepresented groups disproportionately affected by the crisis.
The following information was updated on 13.01.21.
Applications are currently closed, however, and you can view our current eligibility criteria below.
Please ensure that you have read all the information on this page.
- If eligible, applicants can be considered for a emergency grant of £1,000, which they can use towards living costs.
- Applicants will need to meet certain eligibility criteria, provide one form of proof and provide contact details of a theatre professional to act as a referee to verify their information. Grants will be awarded based on hardship.
- All applicants will be required to provide a CV demonstrating their professional theatre roles/jobs between January 2019 and March 2020 (a 15 month period).
- Only certain theatrical freelancer professions are eligible – a full list is below.
Previous recipients of the Theatre Artists Fund
If you have previously received two grants (totalling £2,000), from the Theatre Artists Fund, you are not eligible. If you have received only one grant (totalling £1,000), previously, you are able to apply but please note all grants will continue to be awarded on the basis of hardship across all applications.
Applicants with access requirements, and D/deaf and/or disabled applicants
If you have access requirements and the application form is difficult for you to understand or complete, then get in touch by emailing us at email@example.com so we can discuss a different format, or some appropriate support to enable you to apply. Please include a phone number if you would like a call back.
Deafinitely Theatre are supporting deaf access needs for any deaf applicants wanting to apply. If you would like BSL translation, advice or help to apply please contact Deafinitely Theatre directly by sending an email or BSL video to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please see below a BSL video by Deafinitely Theatre regarding the application process.
*Please note that for D/deaf and/or disabled applicants, we will require you to have worked a minimum of 5 weeks as a self-employed theatre professional to be considered for a grant.
To be considered for an emergency grant of £1,000 from the Theatre Artists Fund, you will be asked to let us know which of the following statements apply to you.
- I have worked in one or a combination of roles/jobs within the professional theatre sector totalling at least 8 weeks between 1st January 2019 and 31st March 2020 (a 15 month period).*Please see note above for D/deaf and/or disabled applicants.
- I am a self-employed theatre worker or freelancer and am registered as such with HMRC.
- I am in need of urgent financial assistance due to the Covid-19 pandemic
- I am not currently in full-time Further or Higher Education
- I am a UK resident and have a UK bank account
- I earn the majority of my income through professional theatre work based in or produced from the UK
- I have less than £2,000 in savings (Please note: You do not need to include money allocated to pay your tax bill.)
- I have not received support in excess of £3500 from any other industry coronavirus emergency (COVID-19) grant scheme. Please note the ACE Project Fund does not count as an emergency grant in this context
- I have actively sought to access all government statutory financial support available to me (e.g SEISS and/or Universal Credit), and I have reduced personal financial commitments wherever possible
You will be asked to provide one item of proof for any one of the above eligibility requirements. This can include any of the following and must include your name:
- Proof of address – e.g. utility bill, driving license
- Bank statement
- Email from employer terminating employment
- Email decline for any of the government schemes
(This is not an exhaustive list)
These can be in any format including a picture or screen grab from your phone.
We will be asking whether you have received any support via the Government’s schemes (CJRS or SEISS), any income from a low paid job or received support before from the Theatre Artists Fund or another hardship grant. We will then be able to assess applicants level of hardship in greater detail and be able to award grants accordingly.
You will also be asked to provide details of up to 5 professional role/s or job/s that you have done between 1st January 2019 and 31st March 2020 (a 15 month period). Your jobs might have occurred one after another or might have overlapped, but the total time worked needs to add up to a minimum of eight weeks. You may include part-time roles as long as the total adds up to at least eight weeks.
All applicants will be required to provide a CV demonstrating their professional theatre roles/jobs between January 2019 and March 2020 (a 15 month period). This must be in PDF or .doc / .docx format.
Your profession – the following freelancer roles are eligible
- Actor / Musical Theatre Actor / Actor Musician
- Assisted Performances Service Provider (i.e. audio description, BSL, captions)*
- Casting Director
- Choreographer / Movement Director
- Circus Artist
- Director / Assistant Director / Resident Director
- Education, Outreach and/or Participation – (with a professional company, production theatre or tour)
- Fight Director
- Musical Director
- Opera Performer
- Press, PR and/or Communications*
- Production Manager
- Props Maker
- Puppet Designer / Maker
- Theatre Technician, including Operator / Programmer
- Scenic Artist
- Set and/or Costume Designer
- Stage Carpenter
- Stage and/or Company Management
- Sound, Video or Lighting Designer
- Voice or Accent Director
- Wardrobe and/or Costume Supervisor / Assistant / Maker
- Wigs, Hair and/or Make-Up
- Other (we will assess whether your profession is eligible)
*These following professions have been added and are now eligible.
Roles and types of work which are not eligible (this is not an exhaustive list)
- Any TV or Film work – Please visit the TV and Film Fund
- If you work solely as a Vocalist/Singer or Musician – Please visit theatresupport.info
- Any voluntary or unpaid work
- Any work in international venues unless it is produced from the UK
- Any work in theme parks, bars, night clubs, corporate/private events
- If your work has been in Education, Outreach and/or Participation, it must have been conducted through a professional theatre company or organisation and be delivered to targeted groups. Independent teaching of theatre art forms to private individuals or groups is not currently eligible
Further information about your individual circumstances
Our ambition for the fund is to support as many people as possible but due to the scale of the crisis it is possible, we will not be able to support every applicant. We will therefore seek to support those in greatest need with an acknowledgment that those from underrepresented groups have been disproportionately affected by the crisis.
There is an additional set of questions which asks more about you and your individual circumstances which will assist us to identify applicants from these groups. You can choose to answer ‘prefer not to say’ if you do not wish to provide the information.
If you are not eligible then other organisations may be able to assist you – Here’s a handy flow chart to help
Some of the larger charities have generously offered to act as conduits for certain areas of the industry. They may pass you on to another organisation better placed to help you.
If you have further questions, please visit our FAQ page, here.