As a Theatre Peckham student for roughly 6 years I was pretty certain that I was fully aware of what went on behind closed doors – mainly from working on productions and getting to meet the backstage staff. However, my work experience was completely different to what I was expecting. It was a very valuable insight into how a cooperative team organised themselves and worked together to run Theatre Peckham as a whole. Personally, I felt like I really engaged in what I was set to work on straight from the off, and the very helpful staff were happy to stop what they were doing to help me when I needed support, which was very encouraging and furthered the quality of my work.
Specifically, I worked with the marketing team, which covers how Theatre Peckham advertises itself and how they reach out to people to gain more members, but also those who are just looking for a show to see. I was introduced to new software to design posters and flyers which I then helped to dispatch to local schools. One task that seemed slightly daunting to me was having to interact with members of the public and help them with questions they had. However I was able to overcome this fear and felt much better about it afterwards, I had learnt a crucial work/life skill that I know will be very valuable for the rest of my life.
I thoroughly enjoyed completing the tasks I had been set and you get a good feeling of satisfaction knowing you’ve contributed to the bigger project in some way or another. What made this feeling better was the way you were treated maturely by the staff and given work that was challenging and held a bit of responsibility with it – clearly demonstrating the staff’s trust in us as interns! I feel like what I learnt from the whole experience was a good indication of what I could expect going into the work world and that the skills I had gained were truly valuable.
I would strongly recommend taking work experience with Theatre Peckham. They can offer a lot, it’s very exciting and doesn’t get repetitive – you are always given new challenges to work on with great variety, ranging from digital to practical skills. Again, I want to emphasise that it is possible to have fun and produce great results whilst working hard to gain very useful tools for later on in life and in an industry that is rapidly growing.