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10月17日号 英劇場関係者、コロナ禍の支援求めデモ

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endangered
危機に瀕(ひん)した(後出 in deadly peril は致命的な危機に瀕して)
emerge
抜け出す
lockdown
(都市)封鎖
unwillingly
不本意ながら
(be) idled
何もしない
dame
男が扮(ふん)する道化の女
in drag
女装して
fabulously
驚くほど
eccentric
変わった、奇妙な
West End
劇場や高級商店などが集中する繁華街
Parliament
国会議事堂
to the ... tunes
ショー中の歌のリズムに合わせて
demonstrator
要求する人
prospect
見通し
raucous
にぎやかな
fairy-tale plot
おとぎ話
topical
話題の、時事の
reference
言及
slapstick
ドタバタ喜劇
innuendo
風刺
asset
財産
bring down the curtain
(ここでは上演を)終わらせる
tentatively
暫定的に
capacity
定員
infection
感染者数
fragile
もろい、脆弱(ぜいじゃく)な
wage
賃金
furlough
一時解雇する
qualify
資格を得る
vital
極めて重要な
implement
実行する
COVID-19 ... measures
新型コロナウイルス対策
unviable
実行不可能な
Victorian
ビクトリア様式(19世紀の建築様式)の
 

Endangered Artists   

As much of Britain's economy emerged from the coronavirus lockdown, its theaters stayed dark, with performers and staff unwillingly idled. So they made a song and dance about it.

A number of actors, technicians and theater workers led by pantomime dames — male actors in fabulously eccentric drag — marched through London's West End to Parliament to the beat of show tunes on Sept. 30, asking the government for a plan to bring theaters back to life. The demonstrators were highlighting the prospect of a dark Christmas season without the hundreds of pantomimes usually staged across the U.K.

Pantomimes — a raucous blend of fairy-tale plots, topical references, slapstick, song, dance and innuendo — are as much a part of the British holiday season as turkey and presents.

The theater "is one of our greatest cultural assets," said actor Tim Hudson. "It's in deadly peril at the moment."

The coronavirus pandemic brought down the curtains at Britain's theaters overnight in March. A few are tentatively beginning to reopen, with reduced capacity and at a financial loss. But rising coronavirus infections and the threat of new local lockdowns threaten even this fragile recovery.

When Britain went into lockdown, the government started to pay the wages of furloughed employees. But most people working in the theater are freelance and did not qualify. Another program was set up for the self-employed, but actors' union Equity said almost half of its members had not received any support.

"We need the government to take notice that we are a vital part of the economy," Helen Clarkson, a stage manager, said.

For now, theaters can operate if they can implement "COVID-19 secure" measures such as social distancing. That is both financially unviable and physically difficult in London's largely Victorian theaters.

"It's impossible to open the big shows — you can't social distance onstage," co-owner of Nimax Theatres Nica Burns said. (AP)

[本文 - 310 words]

週刊英語学習紙 毎日ウィークリー

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