Time's Up to be prevalent at Olivier Awards – but no blackout

The UK's most prestigious theatre awards are ‘standing alongside' the anti-sexual harassment movement.

The anti-sexual harassment movement Time’s Up is to be prevalent at the Olivier Awards next month, organisers have announced.

The UK’s most prestigious theatre awards are “standing alongside” Time’s Up with activists and representatives attending the ceremony at the Royal Albert Hall.

Unlike their film equivalent, the Baftas, attendees at the Oliviers will not be called upon to wear black although Time’s Up pins will be handed out to all guests and nominees alongside information on why organisers see the issue as important, announced Julian Bird, chief executive of The Society of London Theatre and executive producer of the Olivier Awards.

He said the theatre world was “no exception” to the revelations which have rocked Hollywood and a number of other industries in recent months following allegations made by dozens of actresses against film producer Harvey Weinstein.

Speaking at the Oliviers nominations lunch in London, Bird said: “We like to talk about respect in the broadest sense, it’s the watchword for the future in that.

“We’ll be welcoming representatives and activists on the night, we’ll be giving a focus on the red carpet and also talking about the issues in the main show.

“But we also wanted to tell you – because we’re getting lots of questions – that we have agreed collectively with Time’s Up there will be no entreaty to wear black, or any other colour, on the night, so please be as glamorous or otherwise as you wish.

“Together we’ve agreed that we want to talk meaningfully about all the issues around respect to ensure that we make our world-leading theatre industry even stronger for the future.”

Last month stars in London wore black to the Baftas in solidarity with the campaign against sexual harassment and inequality and were joined by a number of activists as guests.

It followed the all-black dress code adopted at the Golden Globes in January.

The West End version of hip hop musical Hamilton has 13 nods for next month’s Oliviers, making it the most nominated production in the history of the awards, while Hollywood stars including Bryan Cranston, Andrew Garfield and Imelda Staunton are also up for prizes.

Catherine Tate will host the ceremony at the Royal Albert Hall on April 8.

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