Casual work at Wycombe Swan Theatre lights up the future for Chris

Chris Walters started his career at Wycombe Swan as a casual technician. Through this work, he developed a keen interest in all aspects of technical theatre, so when an opportunity arose for a Creative Venue Technician apprentice, Chris jumped at the chance to apply.  “I knew this would be an excellent opportunity to continue my professional development in the theatre industry and get an insight into the areas that I had not touched on before” said Chris.

Chris’ first six months on the job were really beneficial and he felt immersed in the inner workings of a receiving house. He said, “I got to work on a multitude of different kinds of productions, big and small, and I loved it! I developed skills and knowledge from many departments that I wouldn’t have even thought possible during those early days as a casual technician. I was even lucky enough to have my own desk in a shared office!”

Despite Covid-19, Chris has managed to continue his apprenticeship with the use of online learning and further reading, and has been well supported by colleagues, industry bodies and his NCCI tutors who have been available to address any concerns he may have and support his progress.

Despite the obvious impact of Covid-19 on the theatre and the wider creative industries, Chris is an advocate for continued professional development as a way of staying true to your craft, learning and adapting to a familiar, yet also unfamiliar landscape. Chris said, “I feel like earning and learning really works and I would recommend anyone thinking of undertaking an apprenticeship or getting into technical theatre to do so, it has changed my life considerably for the better!”  

Chris Walters