Musing on The Blue Elephant Theatre
There cannot be many theatres where the artistic director makes a special trip from their office to the lobby just to say ‘hello’, but that’s the Blue Elephant Theatre for you. I was only dropping off some posters for my forthcoming show there, but I still, as always, I was made to feel welcome. That’s the vibe at this young at heart, friendly, and very dynamic small theatre.
I’m shown the dressing room by Niamh, The Artistic Director who seems almost apologetic about the modest facilities that this 50 seat theatre provides. I say nothing, marvelling that it’s a step up from the toilets and cupboards that I usually have to get changed in when I tour in pop up fringe theatres. There is even a chair! We have a chat in the Bar, a comfortable and cozy space, but without the fake pomp that you find in The West End. Posters of the many shows that feature here adorn the walls and you get a real sense that theatre happens here.
As I glance around I’m really reminded of how the small London venues can be so vibrant. The Arts Theatre, The Rosemary Branch and Rich Mix all spring to mind. But what really makes this venue unique and so special is that it’s not situated in The West End, nor in Islington or Shoreditch. It sits in a modest building in the middle of a council estate in Camberwell. The Blue Elephant also has a policy of promoting new work, tries to support local theatre creatives and reaches out to the local community. They run many great local projects including a theatre summer school for local underprivileged kids and are committed to outreach, bringing in a fresh audience to watch it’s fresh ideas.
I’ve known about The Blue Elephant for sometime, and have always marvelled that such a place could exist. It was on my hit list of places to play so Imagine my delight when I saw a tweet from them saying how much they liked my monthly cabaret show. I just had to have a piece of the Blue Elephant action.
Click here to find out more about the wonderful Blue Elephant Theatre. You can also help them with the summer school and other projects by becoming a friend of the theatre. I have!
I’m be performing my own one man interactive comedy show Brain Rinse at The Blue Elephant Theatre on Friday July 1st and Saturday July 2nd, show starts at 8pm Tickets are £10.00, £8.50 Concessions, £7.50 Southwark Residents. £6.75 early bird offer (book before 28th June)
I really, really hope to see you there.