I joined The Lowry in summer 2013 as a Volunteer Front of House Usher. To be honest, I had a bit of time on my hands and wanted to meet new people while doing something positive. The Lowry seemed like the perfect place to do that and I was right! For my first shift I checked tickets for Birmingham Royal Ballet’s Sleeping Beauty and showed patrons to their seats. It was the second ballet I’d ever watched and I fell in love! I couldn’t tell you anything intelligent about ballet, I’m not even sure what an arabesque is, but I have so much respect for the dancers. Birmingham Royal Ballet’s costumes and sets are sumptuous too, so it’s a real treat to watch one of their shows.
Over the years I’ve volunteered for lots of different organisations and projects, including selling donated blankets for Oxfam at Glastonbury, and picking strawberries for an organic farm cooperative in Cheshire. Volunteering was something I started doing as a college student, probably because I wanted something to put on my UCAS application! Over time I’ve found that it’s become a really important part of my life, and I’ve gained a lot from it, whether that’s new experiences or friendships. Many of The Lowry’s volunteers are retirees, and spending time with them has been really enriching for me personally.
Volunteering at The Lowry also led me to working here. In February 2015 I joined the Ticketing Department as a full-time Dispatch Assistant, where my role is to look after printing and dispatching the tickets. Before that I was working at the Palace Theatre. It was a fun and sociable job, but I was ready for a new challenge.
In my role as Dispatch Assistant I need to be methodical and organised, which suits me because I’m a methodical and organised person. It’s not the most exciting job but I enjoy it, plus I have a secret life outside of work involving lots of cycling, climbing, skateboarding and circus skills.
Being based behind the Box Office counter means I can help out when the building is busy. I love interacting with the patrons who are visiting, whether that’s to watch a matinee performance of a musical, or to see the L.S Lowry collection in the galleries. When people come here they’re excited, and it gives the whole building a nice energy. I love The Lowry’s commitment to a diverse programme of events, from big musicals like The Sound of Music to new work such as By Far the Greatest Team, plus the outreach work including the youth dance ambassadors. It makes The Lowry a vibrant and exciting place.