(London, England) At this years ABTT symposium, TAIT Stage Technologies sponsored 12 ABTT Young and Student Associates to attend the “The National Theatre: A Place for Plays”. Those in attendance, celebrated 40 years of the National Theatre by listening to experts discuss topics such as theatre practitioner, the architectural and consulting community, the relationship between theatre and design, and architecture of theatre buildings. TAIT’s Senior Vice President, Global Head of Automation, Kevin Taylor, was one of the experts chosen to lead the discussions.
Nikki Scott, Managing Director of TAIT Stage Technologies, is passionate about the history of theatre and keen to equip students with the knowledge of its historical importance. Likewise, for Scott, ensuring that students do not miss an opportunity to participate in an elite symposium such as this, is paramount. “We were delighted to sponsor these ABTT technicians to attend the event which recognised the pioneering importance of the National Theatre, its place in our hearts over the past forty years and the continuing vision of its theatre practitioners, engineers and architects of today.” Scott continues, “The day proved to be an inspiring mix of provocative debate, historical insight and a healthy number of amusing old stories. This was a once in a lifetime event, and we were delighted to be able to share it with our staff and the many technicians from the ABTT.”
ABTT student, Kirsten Buckmaster, agreed with Scott, “As a technical theatre student, having the opportunity to attend the ABTT’s symposium was completely invaluable and I would not have been able to afford the trip from Cardiff had I not been able to get a ticket sponsored by TAIT Stage Technologies. It was amazing to meet other students, as well as working professionals in technical theatre and theatre consultancy, and hear from a whole range of practitioners about the NT building and the relationships between those spaces and the collaborators who have created work within them. I was really engaged for the whole day, and look forward to attending more ABTT events like it!”
The sponsorship of these students proved to be a valuable learning experience as technology continues to evolve in theatre and architecture. Elliot Chapman, ABTT Student associate, said, “Thank you for sponsoring me so I could attend the event. I really enjoyed it and it felt surreal being around so many big names in our industry. It was interesting looking at theatre in a different way and what the architects and consultants do to build a theatre. I didn’t realise it was such a long and complicated process. I thought the Theatre Technology Tomorrow segment was interesting. I also thought the history and about building the National Theatre was very interesting and being told by the people who are involved in and work in it. As someone who hasn’t been in the industry very long it was great to listen and to talk to people who have been around a long while and are responsible for how the industry is now.”
The National Theatre is steeped in history, including its technology. Being able to expose its diverse history is important. In order to understand the future of anything, requires you to understand its past. Simon Agyeman, ABTT Young associate, shared, “I thought being given the opportunity to go to such an historic event was very wonderful to be around and coordinated in a very friendly and helpful manor. The event itself taught me so much about the history of the National Theatre and theatre in itself. The support and help that TAIT Stage Technologies supplied was really welcome and friendly. These kinds of opportunities and events I would definitely love to go to again given any sort of chance to go to another one!”
TAIT is dedicated to the preservation of theatrical history and the promotion of new and emerging engineering and technologies.