Backstage at The Lowry: Gemma Norris, Marketing Assistant

Gemma Norris

My name is Gemma and I’m the Marketing Assistant at The Lowry. I’ve been employed for here for the past three and a half years and I’ve lost count of the exciting days at work in that time.

I studied Drama at university, but after graduating I somehow fell into the world of Insurance. A few years later I noticed The Lowry were looking for Casual Ticket Sales Assistants and decided to take the plunge and work towards a career that I would really enjoy. I started shifts in the Box Office a couple of days a week, taking calls and booking theatre tickets for customers and I settled into the team very quickly. Lots of the casual staff in the Box Office and Catering teams are pursuing acting careers or have similar artistic goals, so it’s great to be surrounded by people who share your interests and have a real passion for the arts.

I worked hard to learn as much as I could in Box Office and just over a year later I was offered a permanent position in the Marketing Department. I’m responsible for uploading all the new shows to our website and making sure they go on sale at the right time, but I also assist with marketing campaigns for visiting companies. I’m very fortunate because my job is so diverse it’s very difficult to get bored! One day I will be changing the posters around the building and the next I could be helping to host a star-studded press night.

My personal highlight would have to be working at the launch of The House of Annie Lennox exhibition, where she performed live for about 100 invited guests. I’ll never forget watching this from just a few feet away and feeling very lucky indeed. I’m also very proud of organising The Lowry’s entry into the 2012 Manchester Pride Parade, when twenty of us danced along the streets of the city centre to songs from Hairspray. I’ve also seen some breathtaking performances over the years from world class companies, so it’s wonderful to be able to say it is all part of doing my job.

Little things about being in this building that make it special every day. Seeing the puppet horse, Joey, from War Horse trotting through the foyer, or another day bumping into Will Young at Stage Door, or having lunch sat opposite Willem Dafoe while he is in full costume. Seeing the work that is done by our brilliant Community & Education team always gives me a boost and reminds me that we part of something unique and important, but the fun of working here has never worn off for me and I sincerely hope it never will.

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