Last night for First Night Bloggers…

Ben Woooldridge (@benwooldridge) writes…

After 12 months of  theatre blogging, last Thursday we said a fond farewell to our current First Night Bloggers,  Chris Green and Aemelia Taylor.

First Night Bloggers: Aemelia Taylor and Chris Green

First Night Bloggers: Aemelia Taylor and Chris Green

Over the past year Chris and Aemelia have represented our First Night  scheme offering discounted theatre tickets and events for those aged 16-23 by coming along to each press night at the theatre and blogging about their experiences – sharing their theatrical views and opinions with other young people.

Throughout the course of the year our two bloggers have seen approximately 14 different productions including smash-hit West End productions such as The Phantom of the Opera, The Lion King and Dirty Dancing. The opportunity has also opened up other experiences that Chris and Aemelia had never seen before at the theatre such as their first taste of the ballet with Birmingham Royal Ballet’s Cinderella and their first contemporary dance performance with Batsheva Dance Ensemble.

As Chris and Aemelia move on from their roles we are now thrilled to welcome a group of four brand-new First Night Bloggers; Ben Handforth (@bhandforth), Lindsey Grant (@linzigrant), Tal Fox (@_talfox_) and Heather Jenkins (@Heather_LJ). Click on the blogger’s names to view their first entries and make sure to keep up to date as they report back from upcoming events, productions and theatre news over coming 12 months…

We would like to thank Chris and Aemelia for their hard work and extend a big welcome to our new bloggers!

For more info on First Night, offering theatre goers aged 16-23 discounted tickets for selected performances click here.

Birmingham Hippodrome thanks PwC for their help in making First Night possible.

L-R: Heather Jenkins, Tal Fox, PwC's Mark Smith, Aemelia Taylor, Chris Green, Lindsey Grant and Ben Handforth

L-R: Heather Jenkins, Tal Fox, PwC’s Mark Smith, Aemelia Taylor, Chris Green, Lindsey Grant and Ben Handforth

Big thanks to PwC – supporters of discounted tickets for 16-25 year olds at Birmingham Hippodrome……

We want to say a big thank you to PwC (PriceWaterhouseCoopers), one of the world’s largest professional services organisations, who have recently confirmed support for Birmingham Hippodrome’s popular FIRST NIGHT SCHEME.

First Night Bloggers and PwC's Mark Smith

First Night Bloggers and PwC’s Mark Smith

Free to join, FIRST NIGHT is our ticket discount scheme for young people aged 16-23 years offering members the chance to see some of the best shows in the Midlands including world-class ballet and opera, West End musicals, international dance, drama and the world’s biggest Pantomime.

As an off-shoot project, a team of young FIRST NIGHT BLOGGERS regularly attend press nights at the theatre with the professional media to review productions and write about their theatre experience.  Postings can be found on their own blog pages or via the Hippodrome’s Twitter and Facebook accounts. Take a look below for links to all of our First Night Blogger’s pages.

FIRST NIGHT BLOGGER Tal Fox said: “I cannot even begin to describe how excited I am to have been chosen as a First Night Blogger!  I am thrilled to be able to share my experiences with others my age and hope I can encourage them to share my passion for the theatre.” 

For further information on how to join the scheme and current ticket availability  click here.

To read the full story click here.


Aemelia Taylor

Chris Green

Tal Fox

Ben Handforth

Heather Jenkins

Linzi Grant

A Year Down the Line for First Night Bloggers…

Press & PR Assistant, Ben Wooldridge (@benwooldridge) writes about a year shared with our First Night Bloggers…

Alex and Marcus collect their certificates after 1 year of being Birmingham Hippodrome's First Night Bloggers

Alex and Marcus collect their certificates after 1 year of being Birmingham Hippodrome’s First Night Bloggers

This month we said a very sad goodbye to our First Night Bloggers, Marcus Hubbard and Alex Woolliscroft. Over the past 12 months Marcus and Alex took on the responsibility of being Birmingham Hippodrome’s first batch of bloggers from our First Night scheme, chosen to report back on various openings and special events at the theatre and as ambassadors of our young theatre goers… and what a great job they have done! They have attended over 16 special events and openings including reports on their first trip to the Opera, to DanceXchange and the launch of major shows such as Dirty Dancing and International Dance Festival Birmingham 2012.

Both Marcus and Alex agreed that their experience has been a positive one, so I asked them to give a quick low- down of their time with us, here’s what they said…

ALEX (@ajwoolliscroft):
“What a year it’s been at the Hippodrome; this time last year I would have never dreamed I’d have experienced as much as I have. It’s been so amazing blogging for the theatre, meeting so many new people, and attending so many exciting shows it’s just been wonderful, something I am truly thankful for.

“Looking back over my time here, I have to say that my most memorable show would undoubtedly be my very first event, We Will Rock You – seeing Brian May perform was just a dream! I think I will remember this on the most because not only was it an excellent show, but it was magical to experience theatre as a member of the press, being treated to a VIP reception and free drinks and nibbles just made me feel so special and grateful to be given the opportunity I had.  Lastly thanks to Marcus; it’s been really great blogging with you and I wish you all the success for the future!”


Alex and Marcus at last years Six Summer Saturdays

Alex and Marcus at last years Six Summer Saturdays

MARCUS (@munchkinmarcus):
“I have had one of the most memorable experiences possible being a First Night Blogger for the Birmingham Hippodrome and being one of the first people to have this opportunity makes it even more exciting. I’ve been lucky to attend so many press nights and events that people never would have the chance to. I’ve also been able to see shows that I never would have thought to book for, shows like “Burn the Floor” and Guangdong’s “Swan Lake” we’re particularly memorable for me as I wasn’t expecting to enjoy them as much as I did.

“I must say that my overall favourite show was Top Hat, seeing the red carpet rolled out and the audience in the black tie and tiara dress code was a magical evening of classic musical theatre. Being able to mix and mingle with various people from the theatre and press industry has also benefited me a lot and I’ve been able to experience the crazy world of the press!”

On their final day both Marcus and Alex received a certificate recognising their achievement, a Birmingham Hippodrome book and, most importantly, some chocolaty goodies! We wish them every success in the future as both leave college this year to pursue courses at Drama School.

We are now thrilled to introduce our new pair of First Night Bloggers; Chris Green (@csgreen123) and Aemelia Taylor (@aemeliajess) – you can read Chris’s reviews HERE and keep up to date with Aemelia’s reports HERE. Best of luck to both of them and we look forward to sharing their reviews with you…happy theatre going!

To find out more about First Night – CLICK HERE.