Sky Arts launches search for best amateur theatre company

A new television series for Sky Arts is on the lookout for talented community theatre groups in the UK with a real passion for the arts.

Stagestruck will offer one theatre group an extraordinary chance to work with industry professionals from stage and screen, culminating in a performance in a West End theatre.

Producers are keen to receive applications from amateur theatre companies up and down the country, exploring their stories, commitment and passion for the industry.

The series is being produced for Sky Arts by the multi-Bafta award winning Oxford Film and Television who will follow the members of eight shortlisted societies as they prepare scenes from well-known plays for the Stagestruck judging panel

James Hunt, Sky Arts Channel Director, said that the channel wants to recognise the importance of the amateur dramatist to UK cultural life. “Sir Ian McKellen, Judi Dench and Patrick Stewart all began their illustrious careers within amateur dramatics.

“We were amazed to discover how many people are involved in some form or another, with amateur theatre. With this series, the emphasis will be on excellence of acting which can be found in the most unexpected of places. We hope to find amazing new talent who can put on a performance worthy of its final West End setting.”

A celebration of how amateur theatre can be a beating heart of communities all across Britain

Nicolas Kent, Director of Oxford Film and TV, was equally enthusiastic. “Stagestruck is more than a talent show. it’s a celebration of how amateur theatre can be a beating heart of communities all across Britain,” he said.

“This is an exciting and ambitious production and we are thrilled to be joining forces with Sky Arts.”

Amateur theatre is alive and flourishing across the UK like never before. There are more than 2500 amateur theatre groups in the UK, putting on nearly 30,000 productions a year, attracting over 8 million people to their audiences and making around £40 million in box office income.  

Sky Arts will work closely with the Little Theatre Guild and the National Operatic and Dramatic Association and other society bodies, to reach out to groups for the auditioning process.

Applications close at midnight 25th July 2011. For more information visit

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