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Garsington Opera

Freelance position 13 April to 19 July 2020

Garsington Opera is a prestigious festival presenting four operas in June-July each year on the Getty family estate at Wormsley, near Stokenchurch, with rehearsals in London from mid-April. The Administration Office is located in Great Milton, Oxfordshire.

Role Description

Our Company Management Team assures the smooth running of our busy opera festival through meticulous pre-planning, careful scheduling, constant communication with all departments and support for all our artists (creative teams, principal singers, actors, covers, dancers, chorus and orchestra). The team consists of a Company Manager, a Deputy Company Manager/Arts Admin Assistant and an Assistant Company Manager.

Person Specification

We are looking for a highly organised, IT-literate, self-motivated and detail-oriented person who is passionate about the performing arts and able to get on with all types of people. Some experience in a professional arts organisation is desirable, but more important is the commitment and ability to work calmly and methodically in a fast-paced, creative and dynamic environment and an appreciation of the artistic temperament. Driving license and willingness to work flexible hours and take on all kind of tasks is essential. Access to a car is highly desirable for the Wormsley period.

Place of Work and Hours

You will be working at rehearsals in London from April until the end of June, and on-site at Wormsley for stage rehearsals and performances from the end of May until the contract finishes.

As we are a festival, the hours will be demanding during the rehearsal and performance period when days may start as early as 9am and finish as late as midnight. At least one day off will be scheduled per week but this will not necessarily fall on a weekend. Bank holidays may be working days.

Your Role and Responsibilities

The main focus of your role will be to work seamlessly with the Company Manager and Deputy Company Manager and to assist and deputise where necessary, particularly when the company is split, when rehearsals and performances are taking place in differing sites. The detail of who takes responsibility for which location will be discussed with the Company Manager and will depend on practicalities and the specific experience and interests of the successful candidate.

During Studio Rehearsals

  • Ensure ArtsVision, the scheduling application and database Garsington Opera uses, is always up-to-date.
  • Pastoral care for entire company, including general support and specific requests (finding healthcare professionals, booking taxis, etc.).
  • Act as a main point of contact for artists, stage management and production teams and other company members.
  • Circulate daily schedule updates to the company.
  • Assist with rehearsal room set-up as necessary.
  • Ensure the kitchen / break room is clean and well-stocked.
  • Monitor artists’ arrival at rehearsals.
  • Keep a record and receipts for petty cash. Reconcile and submit this to accounts.
  • Manage Wormsley bus transfers and vehicle registration log.
  • Co-ordinate Wormsley meal sign-up.
  • Take responsibility for Cover Showcase invitations and RSVPs.
  • Administer Alvarez Young Artist Events as required, including the cover showcase in London.
  • Manage dress rehearsal ticket requests.
  • Log cast illnesses and absences.
  • Arrange company parties.
  • Assist Artistic Director, Director of Artistic Administration, Company Manager and Head of Music as required.
  • Adhere to safeguarding, data protection and other policies of Garsington Opera.

On-site at Wormsley (in addition to the above)

  • Daily site administration (e.g. sign-in sheets, checking dressing rooms, liaison with Green Room café, circulating schedule updates).
  • Liaise with Technical department to ensure smooth running of wig/wardrobe calls and stage rehearsals.
  • Assist with recital set-up.
  • Liaise with Wormsley staff regarding room bookings.
  • Performances (in addition to the above)
  • Assist with the administration of cast changes as required, liaising with assistant conductor and director and all parties.
  • Be aware of traffic / public transport disruption and liaise with all parties to ensure a prompt start time of all performances.
  • Communicate absences / latenesses and keep track of any required amendments to artist pay.

Fee and expenses

This is a freelance self-employed position, and a total fee of £6300 is offered. You will be responsible for paying your own tax, and no pension contribution or additional holiday pay is due. You will be considered London-based until 14 June, and based at Wormsley from 15 June, although throughout the engagement you will need to travel between both locations. As such, trips to Wormsley before 15 June, and to London after 14 June will be reimbursed (mileage is paid at 40p per mile or 30p per mile for electric vehicles). Accommodation will be provided near Wormsley from 14 June – 19 July inclusive (no accommodation is provided in London). Public transport expenses in London will be reimbursed, and a hot meal will be provided each day you are called to the theatre.

Applications

To apply, please send a CV and covering letter to Laura Canning (laura@garsingtonopera.org) by 5pm on Thursday 20 February. Interviews will take place in London on 25 February, though alternative arrangements may be possible for exceptional candidates.