Actor Mark Rylance has launched a Christmas Appeal for The Edge Theatre & Arts Centre, Manchester’s award-winning theatre for participation, and recent new Chamber member.
He said: "I am delighted to be a Patron of The Edge who do such wonderful work with some of Manchester’s most vulnerable people.
"Christmas is a time of joy and celebration for many of us - getting together and being part of a family and circle of friends. But for many people it is a time when feelings of loneliness and isolation are worse than ever. We use the power of making theatre to address these issues. The work we do here makes people feel less isolated, less lonely, less of an outsider and part of a community – our community. It helps people to feel welcome, to feel noticed, to feel that they matter, that they have a contribution to make. It helps people feel things are possible, things can change. It helps people turn their lives around.
"48 weeks of the year, our specialist teams work with The Booth Centre delivering singing and acting classes to people who are at risk of or experiencing homelessness. This group perform in the theatre twice a year alongside professional musicians, delivering beautiful and moving theatre to sold-out audiences."
Billy was in a dangerous downward spiral, victim to drugs and alcohol, no friends, no prospects, no hope. Billy is turning his life around: “It’s good for your self-confidence, belief, everything. I’m ex crack-head, smack-head but being on stage, it gives me more of a buzz than any of that”
The CEO of The Booth Centre, Amanda Croome MBE, says of the work “The drama has a transforming effect. Many members of the group have moved onto employment, to take up education and training courses or have entered detox, as a direct result of the boost that they got from working with The Edge."
Your help is needed to continue doing this important work. Would you consider giving £5 to help someone in crisis? If you are able to make a donation please text EDGE18 £5 to 70070 or donate online at edgetheatre.co.uk or contact email@example.com to discuss how your business can help.