The Marlowe
The Marlowe celebrates Earth Day!

The Marlowe celebrates Earth Day!

Today (Monday 22 April) marks Earth Day, a global moment to focus on the environment and what we can all do to reduce our impact on the world.

At The Marlowe, we do this year-round as we hold environmental awareness as one of our core beliefs. Led by our climate protection advocacy group, Team Green, every department is making strides in implementing green-forward thinking in our work.

Since 2019, The Marlowe has worked with Julie’s Bicycle, an organisation that provides guidance and expertise to the arts industry on achieving net zero carbon.

We are also working towards achieving the Theatre Green Book baseline standard in all shows we produce. This initiative was created by professionals from across the theatre industry and offers guidelines for responsible theatre-making in the context of the climate crisis. The recommendations present some big challenges – including reusing where possible, keeping detailed records of materials used and disposed of and minimising deliveries – but we intend to meet these challenges head-on.

As part of this effort, we have begun focusing on how to source props, costumes and set in a more environmentally friendly way. For example, in the Senior Youth Company’s recent production Wojtek: The Happy Warrior, all but one item of costume was second hand.

A group of teenage boys and girls on stage, dressed War attire while playing musical instruments

Photo by Steve Gregson

We’re also using the Julie’s Bicycle’s Carbon Calculator tool which helps us monitor carbon output from our self-produced shows. We’re pleased to set the goal of producing our first production to achieve Theatre Green Book baseline standard with our family Christmas play in The Studio this year.

We’re also actively pursuing ways to diminish our energy usage, with our old auditorium lights now fully replaced with LED lights. This mammoth effort, carried out in partnership with Canterbury City Council, will save up to 83% of the energy used each year compared with the original lighting system. We’ve also recently replaced our tungsten spotlights with LED ones, dramatically reducing the electricity required not only to run but also to vent the heat they produced.

This Earth Day, we’d like to thank our audiences in helping us reduce our carbon footprint. We’ve been reducing our printing in the Box Office, with audience members being encouraged to pick digital e-tickets over getting them printed. This has proven incredibly successful, reaching our target of emailing 150,000 tickets between October 2023 and February 2024.

Earth Day is a chance for us to celebrate all of these changes, both big and small, which ensure we can help heal our world while welcoming and entertaining audiences for years to come.