Book a ticket to show support, says theatre

Russian skater Yuri Kouprin makes a spectacular leap during rehearsals for a pirate sequence in Peter Pan on Ice at the Kings Theatre in Southsea.''Picture: Steve Reid (110281-314)
Russian skater Yuri Kouprin makes a spectacular leap during rehearsals for a pirate sequence in Peter Pan on Ice at the Kings Theatre in Southsea.''Picture: Steve Reid (110281-314)
Picture: Shutterstock

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The vice-chairman of Southsea’s Kings Theatre has urged people to go along to see its shows as it suffers from a council grant cut.

Ian Pratt spoke out after Portsmouth City Council cut the theatre’s grant by more than a third.

Mr Pratt said he did not blame the council for making the decision to hold back on funding.

‘It’s a very difficult time and we can understand why the council have had to make these cuts,’ he said.

‘But we will now have to tighten our belts in a couple of areas and be very careful.’

Although the theatre in Albert Road, which is part-staffed by volunteers, will lose £4,300 of its grant this year, the trust is not planning any dramatic changes.

Mr Pratt said people had written to the theatre to express support after hearing about the funding cut. He said: ‘I thank people who wrote in in support. The best way for people to support the Kings Theatre is to come along and go to the shows.’

The theatre, whose charitable trust was set up over a decade ago following a public campaign to save it from closure, receives support from the local community.

A bucket collection takes place after every show and the money collected is either used by the trust for theatre maintenance, or is donated to other local charities.

In order to raise its profile in the city, the theatre has widened its variety of shows bringing in professional companies, comedians and West End touring productions.

The theatre has a packed schedule for 2011 including Zippos Circus this month and The West End’s Blood Brothers in May.