Theatre industry photographer Ali Wright has curated My Latest Role; a series of environment portraits of self-employed creatives who became key workers during the Covid-19 pandemic. 

(c)Ali Wright

My Latest Role aims to celebrate the resilience and adaptability of freelance creatives who make up 70% of the theatre industry and to highlight that despite theatres being legally allowed to open on 1st August with social distancing, there is still uncertainty of how the Government’s financial package announced on 6th July will support freelancers. 

(c)Ali Wright

The professionals who feature in the project include:

  • Actor Sarah O’Connor who was a swing on Waitress at the Adelphi Theatre and became a care home worker.
  • Paris Rivers who is a Special Effects Makeup and Cabaret Artist who became a funeral service operator.
  • Dev Danzig who is a Designer, Stage Manager and Prop Maker who began assembling and testing ventilators.
  • Nadia Nadif who is an Actor and Director who began volunteering with the food poverty charity Feast! providing meals for the vulnerable.
  • Andrew Ellis who is a Lighting Designer and was managing the spring tour of BalletBoyz’ ‘Deluxe’ who became a Tesco delivery driver.
  • Kara Chamberlain who is a Writer, Producer at Crossline Theatre and Actor began working in an independent health shop.
  • Parvinder Shergill who is an Actor, who has worked as a Doctor in a hospital before and during the pandemic.
  • Karl Best who was performing in The Visit at the National and began working as a porter at King’s College Hospital.

Ali Wright is a theatre photographer. Her theatre photography credits include The Song ProjectInside Bitch (Royal Court Theatre), The Rise and Fall of Little Voice (Park Theatre), Angry, Islander: A New Musical, How Love Is Spelt (Southwark Playhouse), Little Baby JesusMacbeth (Orange Tree Theatre), Coming Clean, La Boheme, Tosca (Trafalgar Studios), The Niceties (Finborough Theatre) and Going Through (Bush Theatre).

Talking about the project she said: “As a theatre photographer, I lost six months of work overnight and only qualified for a fraction of my previous wage. I was interested in discovering how other freelance theatre artists were coping in this new context. I soon discovered that many across the industry were taking up roles as Key Workers to financially survive, many having been excluded from government assistance, and volunteering as a way to help others in a time of crisis. My Latest Role has been a way for me to play my small part in amplifying the theatre workforces’ resilience, adaptability and generosity.”

All of the images for the project are available to view here. If you are in a position to support, please consider making a donation to The Theatrical Guild, whom directly supports theatre workers facing financial hardship.