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Finsbury Park theatre development appeals for more funding

PUBLISHED: 08:45 02 December 2011

Jez Bond

Jez Bond

Archant

»The team behind a major new theatre are in a race against time to raise nearly half a million pounds for a whole floor dedicated to teaching.

The people building the £2million Park Theatre project in Clifton Terrace, Finsbury Park, have just three months to find an extra £400,000 for a studio devoted to education and community work.

Classes

It would become the new home of the Islington Community Theatre (ICT), a charity that gives free acting classes to disadvantaged youngsters, which was recently forced out of premises in North Road, Holloway.

If the money is not secured, the floor will be given over to flats to make up the shortfall, casting doubt over ICT’s future.

Jez Bond, Park Theatre’s project leader, said: “We’re really hopeful but there’s a big cut-off in about three months. Soon we’ll have to decide which way we’re going so we can tell the builders.”

The Park, due to open next autumn, already has pledges amounting to £75,000 but faces a nail-biting race to drum up the remainder.

The ICT, which works with 120 nine to 20-year-olds every week and has performed at the National Theatre, trains young people in all aspects of theatre production.

It moved to a space at the Central Library in Fieldway Crescent, Highbury, last week, but only has it for a year and is banking on a future at the Park.

ICT artistic director Ned Glasier said: “It would be incredibly sad to lose it to a flat. Being based at the Park would help us connect our young people to a working theatre on a day-to-day basis and give them new opportunities particularly in technical theatre.”

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