BY SCOOT FOUNDER, MAX HUTCHINSON
What is Scoot Theatre about?
First and foremost Scoot exists to entertain.
We want to bring theatre to unexpected spaces and offer live entertainment to people in a safe and responsible way, particularly those who might not feel comfortable travelling very far in the current circumstances.
We are an intentionally broad church in terms of output, proudly offering a variety of work.
We have a family-friendly ethos, which stems from a desire to be as inclusive as possible.
We want to bring people together again.
The Cricket Dream Cast
How did Scoot Start?
I started Scoot Theatre because I wanted to offer people the chance to see some live theatre after months of being stuck inside during lockdown. With all the theatre buildings closed, a bit of thinking outside the box was required in terms of where our first production could be staged. On a bike ride with my little boy one afternoon we cycled past a cricket pitch and it struck me as the perfect venue: a big open space, easy for distancing, with bar and toilets.
Cricket grounds are also a real focal point of the community, situated at the heart of many towns and villages.
I started contacting all my local clubs immediately (this was before any restrictions were eased, so it was all hypothetical) but luckily they liked the idea of hosting an outdoor, family-friendly, sixty minute version of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, so we started getting dates in the diary in the hope that restrictions would ease in time.
I’m incredibly grateful to all the cricket clubs for being so open and supportive from so early on.
From there, we assembled a cast and got a rehearsal schedule together. Luckily the restrictions were loosened just in time for us to rehearse with new Covid-Secure guidelines, so we were ready to go.
Our production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream toured
ten venues in two weeks, played to over 2500 audience
members in total, got two mentions in
The Guardian and one four-star review in The Telegraph.
You can read more about it here:
I’m incredibly proud of what we achieved in this first outing.
To hear people laughing and giving such warm feedback after the show felt like an important step towards some normality. We put a lot of effort into safety but I was still pleasantly surprised at the number of people that came out in such strange times; it confirmed to me the necessity of theatre – people really do want it, need it in their lives, for whatever reason that may be.
For me, as an audience member, most importantly I want to be entertained.
So I’ve made that our number one priority for Scoot.
We’re going to offer all sorts of things and cater for all sorts of tastes and
I hope you’ll walk away from all of our shows feeling a bit warmer and a bit brighter than before!
Max's son, the original Scooter
A bit sentimental really.
My son was learning to ride his first scooter during lockdown.
I also hope it’s representative of the energy of our work
– I want our shows to ‘scoot’ along!