British National Theatre breaks with Shell oil

This 2009 video from London, England says about itself:

On Saturday January 3rd, Art Not Oil activists put on an impromptu performance in the foyer of the National Theatre prior to the matinee performance of Shell-sponsoredOedipus‘.

While a singer took to the stage (where there was a conveniently placed live microphone), another activist handed out leaflets, including a glossy spoof that looked like the National Theatre was inviting an open discussion about the morality of accepting oil company sponsorship. A third person joined in on cornet as security guards surrounded the singer.

After singing, playing and speaking their point for a few minutes, they ended the protest, to a gratifying round of applause from the theatregoers who had watched the performance with interest.

After leaving the building, the three activists and a friend continued to leaflet latecomers outside the main doors. The response was generally good.

A short film of the action is available in wmv and mp4 formats (mp4 can be read by the excellent free cross-platform player ‘vlc’ – a free download from videolan).

Find it here.

…where you can also find more on Art Not Oil’s ‘farewell to Shell’ on Jan 3rd and 4th, as well as how to tell the NT what you think of their corporate bedfellow(s).


The Art Not Oilers

And now, over ten years later …

From daily The Morning Star in Britain:

Friday, October 4, 2019

National Theatre drops Shell sponsorship in win for environment

THE National Theatre became the second major company to drop sponsorship from oil firms today after parting company with Shell.

Shell had been a “corporate gold” member of the National Theatre, giving the oil company access to exclusive perks and facilities at the theatre in return for £15,000 per year.

The news came just two days after the Royal Shakespeare Company publicly announced the end of its long-running sponsorship deal with BP.

Danny Chivers, from the activist theatre group BP or not BP, said remaining oil-sponsored institutions are “looking increasingly isolated.”

He said: “It is simply no longer acceptable for any cultural organisation to be promoting and supporting the fossil fuel industry in the middle of a climate crisis.

“It’s time the British Museum, Royal Opera House, Science Museum, National Portrait Gallery and Southbank Centre followed the ethical leadership of the National Theatre and the RSC — otherwise they seriously risk losing their legitimacy in the eyes of a public that is only becoming more concerned about the climate emergency.”

2 thoughts on “British National Theatre breaks with Shell oil

  1. Pingback: Shell accused in Brazilian oil spill disaster | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  2. Pingback: Big Oil gets billions of taxpayers’ money | Dear Kitty. Some blog

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