Have you ever thought of becoming a Volunteer Front of House Usher at Swindon Theatres? We are always looking for people to join our Front of House team to help the smooth running of our shows at both the Wyvern Theatre & Swindon Arts Centre. To find out more about volunteering at Swindon Theatres we sat down with Customer Services Manager Darren Chivers to find out more. Read the full chat below.
Hi Darren, thank you very much for your time. What’s your role at Swindon Theatres and what does it involve?
I am just one of the 3 Customer Service Managers working for Swindon Theatres across our two venues, the Wyvern and The Arts Centre. Together we make sure we are providing the very best customer service to all of our audience members and a key way that we do this is through our team of volunteer ushers.
What does the role of being an usher involve?
It’s very much a customer facing role, our team of volunteers are often the first people that audience members will come across when they come into the building so they ensure they give a cheery welcome to everyone. We are very lucky to have a team of around 150 very dedicated people who regularly volunteer by greeting people, checking tickets, providing a watchful eye in the auditorium and generally helping with the smooth running of our venues. I am so proud of the level of service this team is able to provide, they represent the venues so strongly and we receive so much praise from audience members on the lovely welcome they received. It’s a very social role and we do our best to arrange various activities for them such as trips to other theatres, quiz nights, film nights, coffee mornings even board game nights. Of course one of the perks of this role is that as a volunteer usher they get to watch a variety of shows, shows they may never otherwise have even thought about booking to watch and they even get to meet the odd celeb from time to time.
How important are ushers in the running of shows?
It never ceases to amaze me how much time people are willing to give to support our venues, we only ask that they work 2 shifts per month for us but so many of the team choose to go above and beyond this and there are the regular faces who pop up several times a week. Like most regional theatres we rely on this team, they provide an important service and we are so grateful that there are people willing to help out in this way. Our volunteers are seen as the face of the venue, they are an important and key part of the smooth running of all our shows and events, without people like this i’m not sure how regional theatres would survive.
How can you apply to be an usher? Do you need previous experience?
You don’t need any previous experience, all you need is a helpful and positive outlook and a bit of spare time. The process to join our team is easy, to start with come along to one of our open evenings, the next one being Friday 11th August at 6.30pm at the Wyvern Theatre and we will give you an overview of the role, a tour of the building and a chance to ask any questions and if you are still keen to be a part of the team after that we will proceed with an interview and go from there.
How can people find out more information?
Drop us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will do our best to help you or just turn up at the open evening, no need to book, it really is a case of the more the merrier.
Find out more about volunteering with Swindon Theatres here: https://swindontheatres.co.uk/Online/volunteers