Theatre-lovers wanted for volunteer opportunities at Oldham Coliseum

OLDHAM Coliseum Theatre is looking for theatre-lovers to join their dedicated team of Customer Experience Volunteers working in the Front-of-House areas of the venue.

The Coliseum is the last surviving professional theatre in Oldham, providing a diverse and exciting programme through the Main Theatre, Studio Theatre and opportunities to get involved with its Learning and Engagement programme.

The theatre produces a rich mix of dramas, comedies, musicals, adaptations and modern classics, as well as a hugely popular traditional pantomime.

Customer Experience Volunteers are a vital part of the smooth running of the theatre, and last year 44 volunteers donated 4,300 hours of their time to the Coliseum.

The volunteers enjoy a busy and varied role: meeting and greeting customers, directing audiences around the theatre and taking them to their seats, checking tickets, selling refreshments and programmes, answering customer queries, keeping audiences safe in case of emergencies and working alongside Box Office and Front of House staff.

The theatre’s longest serving volunteer, Leslin Simmons, joined the team almost 25 years ago.

Leslin commented: “I’ve always loved the theatre. I’ve been coming to the Coliseum since I was in my forties.

“I had early retirement and my daughter suggested I get in touch – and that was 1995! When I started volunteering I fell in love with the theatre all over again.

“I’ve built really good friendships with the team and some of the regular customers.”

Volunteering with the Coliseum offers the opportunity to uncover hidden talents in an exciting and creative environment, meet new people, have fun and experience the theatre’s diverse programme of plays and entertainment.

Joining the team also offers a great opportunity to gain work experience working in a customer-facing role.

All Coliseum volunteers are supported every step of the way by the theatre’s Customer Services team and receive full training.

Kyle Wilcock, another of the theatre’s Customer Experience Volunteer Team, fits his volunteering sessions around studying History at Manchester Metropolitan University and working part-time.

He said: “I think this theatre is so special. When you walk into other theatres they can feel big and impersonal whereas the Coliseum has always felt homely and friendly to me.

“Being a Customer Service Volunteer gives you a broad range of skills that can be used elsewhere. I’m definitely more confident because of it and can mix with different groups of people much better.

“You get to volunteer in a way that suits your lifestyle and learn new skills; it’s just a really great way to spend your free time.”

The theatre is looking for people aged 18+ who are reliable, open and friendly, enjoy meeting new people and working on a variety of tasks.

Those interested must be available for one session each week for a minimum of three months and have a flexible approach to the schedule.

To find out more about becoming a Customer Experience Volunteer at the Coliseum email House Manager Heather Shaw at heathershaw@coliseum.org.uk

Find out more about the Oldham Coliseum online: www.coliseum.org.uk or follow them on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

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