Work Experience – Royal Albert Hall

As part of our Lower Sixth Activity Week, I visited the Royal Albert Hall to complete two days of work experience. After a very warm welcome I was given a lanyard, radio headset and wristband. Feeling fully immersed within the production team, I was escorted to the main hall where I was met with views of the breath-taking yet strangely empty auditorium. I was quickly introduced to the technical team who explained the complex lighting set up for that evening’s show as well as a front of house sound engineer who introduced me to the basics of microphone checks and artist earpieces. Following a busy morning I embarked on a tour of the building. The informative guide provided a fascinating tour which included special entry into the King’s box. The compelling architecture along with the history allowed for an hour well spent! Following my lunch I was included in an intriguing meeting about the complex oval shape of the theatre and therefore the effect this has on its raked seating. I spent the rest of the afternoon with the marketing and PR department which provided insight into the ‘behind the scenes’ of the theatre. My day ended with experiencing a mic check for Van Morrison whilst helping trial the lights and haze machines for his performance later that evening.

My second day began with a bright and early start with a series of handshakes as I was swept around all sorts of fascinating meetings. The most interesting being with Cirque Du Soleil discussing details for the next season in January. As they day went on I witnessed the installation of the raisers on the stage for the orchestra of Gregory Porter who was performing later that day. This was interrupted with the arrival of the pride flag which took us to the terrace where I had the opportunity to help raise the flag onto the building! From the terrace I was carefully taken to the roof of the hall which gave compelling views of London, venturing around the very top of the theatre I encountered the Royal Albert Hall bees and I learnt about the benefits they bring to the local green spaces. We climbed even further up where I was met with the grate at the top of the building, carefully climbing in with shaking legs I took in the birds-eye view of the hall.

My day ended in the main auditorium with a sound check with Gregory Porter where I was very kindly gifted my very own crew t-shirt and a Royal Albert Hall branded travel cup. The generosity and hospitality of the staff along with the inclusivity of the space allowed me to have an amazing experience whilst hands-on learning about the ‘behind the scenes’ of theatre!

Rina, Year 12

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