With our doors still closed due to coronavirus, read the fifth instalment of our blog, from Front of House and Audience Development Coordinator Ash. We are keen to continue our cultural exchange, digitally, by sharing creative activities, live streams, resources and opportunities on offer from the university, our friends, associate artists and colleagues.

However, we need to take a short interval so that our team can use this time to fully support our students, online curricular activities and digital programme. The blog will return in June, until then enjoy offerings from our brilliant staff, students, alumni and friends of the theatre – and let’s continue to Nurture the Arts Together, at home.

A message from our Artistic Director and Lecturer in Performance, Niki Woods.

“Hello friends of NAT,

Firstly, I’ve got to start by stating the obvious and I speak for all the NAT team when I say… We Miss You!

Staff, students, audiences, artists, ushers, passers-by, lift engineers, our lovely cleaners, we really do miss you all.

I’ve met with many colleagues through the screen. Like many of you perhaps, I find this way of ‘meeting’ odd. These are not impromptu meetings, are they? They are pre-arranged and so it’s like putting a date in the calendar that might as well yell at you, ‘nothing impromptu about this meeting’!

Don’t get me wrong, these have also been useful, and it’s been lovely to ‘see’ people. But I miss seeing YOU in the building, in the theatre, at the Box Office (and what a gorgeous Box Office it is) – I miss seeing you from head to toe, in full portrait with real life backgrounds…

Anyway, a lot has happened for me over the last couple of months, life has changed, rhythms have recalibrated and so dealing with the big stuff meant focusing on the small stuff gave some calm to my world. For example, in no particular order:

I’ve (re)discovered I can cook, bake and grow things, things to eat.

I’m sure, like many of you, I’ve spent hours at a computer, huddled in the corner of a 10×6 box room, working from home.

I watched One Man, Two Guvnors on NT Live, Imitating the Dog’s Night of the Living Dead and I’m a regular at The Covid Arms

I’ve been to two zoom dinners with friends.

I’ve walked the dog, fixed the squeaky floorboards, dug out, filled, sanded and painted the rotten door and window and talked to my family, friends, neighbours and colleagues and students about how this time is impacting us.

It made me think about endings. I’ve always found endings tricky, that’s why I’m known to keep talking when I should be leaving! I find them abrupt. I’ve been thinking about all the students who should have had some kind of closure; GCSE, A-Level, 3rd Year undergrads. All working towards an ending of some kind in order to move into their next phase. And those endings are gone. Their trajectory abruptly shortened; 6th form and FE, forever with predicted grades, replacement screen-based alternatives to a real life performances, online ‘wrap’ parties and award evenings and I don’t know what kind of graduation they’ll have…

So, with this in mind the New Adelphi Theatre team are turning our attention to our students, mainly our final year students, their final projects were hastily rehashed to live online, friendships became even more reliant on the internet and their graduation ceremony is somewhat uncertain. Your ending wasn’t quite what you (or we) had expected. So, we invite you to join us for a selection of events for and with you – here’s a brief look at some of our plans…

Book yourselves free tickets to the Ridiculusmus Virtual Trilogy. Come to the MA’s DYP mini fest. We’ll be in touch very soon with some exciting online events, just for you, with Imitating the Dog. We’re building a new website that will host our final year student work – from our art and design degree shows to films and performances, more on this in June. An alumni event so you can hear about how our graduates moved from student to teacher, to soap actor, to voice over artist, production manager, casting director, commissioned theatre maker, community artist, photographer, producer, writer, director, film actor…

In the new academic year, we’ll be contacting our Class of 2020 to share opportunities, funding, internship news, talks, workshops and free tickets to our events, hopefully by then we’ll be back in our theatre spaces, so we can see you again, in portrait from head to toe!

The final curtain on your degree hasn’t fallen yet. Let’s imagine the closure you would’ve had leaves an opening for you to stay with us, in spirit. Let’s just say, although you’ll have your certificate, you’ll be forever in the TV Acting Studios, the Studio Theatre, Voice Acting Studio, Editing Studios, rifling through costume, sat at a quiet space in Clifford Whitworth, looking over Salford from the RR2 balcony and waiting for the 50 bus… This ending will not fade over time, this ending will be remembered online, this ending will be shared, this ending will be lasting…

What was the last thing you did (and where) in the New Adelphi Building before we closed? Tell us the last time you remember being in the building, where were you, who were you with and what were you doing? When we’re back in the building, we’ll take photos of these places and share them, along with the memory of you there.

Thank you and I look forward to seeing you from head to toe soon. Niki”

Share your memories here.


We’re thrilled to be working with one of Britain’s flagship comedy theatre companies, Ridiculusmus, in collaboration with Enable Us Festival, University of Sheffield.

Join us for an online event this weekend featuring performance excerpts and discussion between the writers and performers, David Woods and Jon Haynes and the clinical psychologists who advised them. Chaired by our very own Dr Richard Talbot with technical and virtual Front of House support from Hannah and I! Plus, after each of the three afternoon sessions, ticket holders will be sent a link so that they can watch each performance in full!

This internationally toured trilogy of work looks and listens closely to the most widespread mental health conditions of our age (psychosis, PTSD and insurmountable bereavement) and offers ways in which we respond to and work with people processing traumatic experiences. The three shows respond to groundbreaking therapies for mental health care and won them the Herald Archangel Award at #EdFringe last year.

I was fortunate enough to see the show in Edinburgh and I’m so excited that we are able to share this fascinating exploration of Ridiculusmus’ work with you all this weekend!

This is a must for anyone interested in imaginative comedy writing and deft deployment of the comic form in contemporary theatre. 

The event is Pay What You Can (from free – £15). We ask you to pay what you can afford, the funds collected will support future projects and artist fees.


TODAY, students of the Contemporary Performance Practice MA welcome you to an online festival of developing performance, created and adapted within the context of national lockdown. From narrated art, to installation, to web chats, to comedy sketches, to projected film, to body art – they will be exploring identity, time, quarantine, personal growth, womanhood, ancestry and more.

I had a great time supporting this years MA cohort in their response to Concerto, by Michael Pinchbeck which we programmed as part of our Autumn/Winter 2019/2020 season. They each have a varied practice and research focus, so I can’t wait to see what they’ve created digitally to share with us today, during the 4 hour live stream!

Warnings: Contains strong language, flashing lights, emotional triggers, audience interaction (live chat) and live piercings. 


Join us for our second virtual New Adelphi Comedy Night in collaboration with ComedySportz UK: a team of professional improvisers are joined by a student performer for some quick-witted gags, games, sketches and songs inspired by audience suggestions.

The live stream is free to watch, you can donate if you’re able to. The proceeds will be used to support our friends at CSz Manchester, many of whom are self-employed and have lost paid work due to Coronavirus. Tuesday 26 May, 7:30pm.


The Salford University Dance Society perform in our theatre annually, this year we were unable to host them physically in the space, so we invite you and your family to be our guest over on our brand new YouTube Channel (don’t forget to subscribe!).

SUDs members have come together (while apart) to film themselves perform a variety of dance styles to the story of Belle and the Beast. You may even see a few dishes dancing about too!

“We’re very proud of everyone who has helped out in the making of this show; we hope you enjoy it! SUDS love xx”

SUDs presents Beauty and the Beast, Thursday 28 May, 7:30pm, New Adelphi Theatre YouTube.


Your Student’s Union 2019/20 Arts and Media Sabbatical Officer and recent graduated of TV and Radio Megan Hayward has started her very own community podcast for Salford students!

“Being an extrovert in self-isolation is exhausting, hopefully this podcast will give you enough social interaction to get through the day.”

Megan has already featured alumni and comedian Jack Gleadow, have a listen! And if you fancy yourself a guest, drop her an email at m.hayward2@salford.ac.uk.

Megan is a great friend of the New Adelphi Theatre and we miss hearing her self proclaimed “world’s loudest laugh” in our theatre!


Alumnus Ella Otowemo has been selected alongside many other superb local artists to be supported by Manchester International Festival. As part of her remote residency, Ella will be writing a collection of new poems in response to places we miss. Connect with Ella and her project on social media.

What place do you miss? Thinking about the New Adelphi, I miss my concrete bench breaks, outside in the sunshine (and the strong Salford breeze) with my colleagues.


MediaCityUK has launched a brand-new initiative MediaCityUK’s Skills Swap Shop in partnership with the University of Salford.

Beth Hewitt, Creative Director, MediaCityUK Directorate, School of Arts and Media at University of Salford said:

“Skills Swap Shop is a great example of how the MediaCityUK stakeholders are coming together to support communities by providing a platform for emerging talent to engage with industry and vice versa, enabling people to share their range of digital and creative skills with others.

The University of Salford is supporting and encouraging our soon-to-be graduates to realise their full potential by continuing to develop these industry connections within MediaCityUK and Skills Swap Shop offers fantastic opportunities for them”

Follow MediaCityUK on Twitter to keep up to date with the Skill Swap Shop opportunities!


If you haven’t checked out the Made in Salford blogs by the university’s #StudentBlogger’s, you should! From tips, activities, interviews and guides – there’s something for every Salford student (current and prospective)

Why not read some throwback highlights, from our directorate – to help you remember and reflect on some of our fantastic student achievements! (there are just too many to mention them all!)


From advice via instant messaging, digital library guides, careers advice, skills for learning, mental health and wellbeing support, to ‘microwave meals in a mug’ tips, musical theatre album recommendations and cat facts to keep you entertained – the University of Salford Student’s Union is with you every step of the way.


This #MentalHealthAwarenessWeek, remember – we’re here for you.

The theme of this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week is kindness.

“Kindness strengthens relationships, develops community and deepens solidarity”

So this week’s shout out goes to students who’ve inspired us with their kindness and an alumnus who uses her successful platforms to raise awareness about mental health and young people.

  • Salford University Dance Society hosted a quiz on May 1st to raise money for Personal Protective Equipment supplies for MHA care homes: a national charity supporting over 18,500 older people with accommodation and support services in the UK. They managed to raise a wonderful £785. Well done everyone!
  • Media and Performance student Aimee Sturgess is raising money for the Association of NHS Charities by running/walking the equivalent of the collective running times (125 hours and 40 minutes) of 50 West End Shows in 50 Days. Her uncle is a nurse in the NHS helping with the fight against Coronavirus and her love of all things theatre is helping inspire and motivate her in this incredible challenge! Good luck Aimee!
  • To mark Mental Health Awareness Week, the University of Salford is proud to support an online event with Salford graduate and ambassador for mental health charities, Young Minds and Place2Be Katie Thistleton. Katie and Dr Radha’s podcast, ‘Life Hacks’, on BBC Radio 1 encourages young people across the UK to open up about their feelings. This week, the project which is aimed at supporting anyone who may be feeling a little lost at the moment, will be highlighted on MCUK’s Spotlight On. Tune in this Thursday.



It’s been a pleasure and an inspiration to share the incredible creative activities, digital streams and opportunities on offer from our friends, associate artists and colleagues in response to the challenges we all face. It’s now time for a short interval. The blog will return in June, until then, stay safe.

Ash and the New Adelphi Theatre Team.

Read our other four blogs below.
Read the latest news from the University of Salford on the news channel.
Keep up-to-date with the University COVID-19 response: Students | Staff Applicants International Applicants | Public

Header photo credit: Ash Cox