7:00am PT by Abid Rahman
Amazon, The Soho Theatre to Stream Phoebe Waller-Bridge's 'Fleabag' Stage Show for Charity
The theatrical production of Phoebe Waller-Bridge's Fleabag is set to stream on Amazon and The Soho Theatre's On Demand in April to raise money for frontline health services as well as creative freelancers affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
A 2019 performance of the critically acclaimed one-woman show, recorded at London's Wyndham Theatre, will be available for a 48-hour download on April 10 on Amazon in the U.S. and U.K. for $5 (4 pounds). The performance will also be made available in the U.K. and Ireland on the Soho Theatre's On Demand streaming site from April 6 and then be on the same site from April 10 in Australia, New Zealand and Canada.
All proceeds, less tax and fees, will be distributed to U.K. charities including The National Emergencies Trust, NHS Charities Together and Acting for Others, as well as the newly launched Fleabag Support Fund, which will distribute grants of $3,067 (2,500 pounds) to freelancers working in the U.K. theater industry affected by the novel coronavirus crisis. The organization in the U.S. that will benefit from the money raised will be announced soon.
In a statement, Waller-Bridge said: “I hope this filmed performance of Fleabag can help raise money while providing a little theatrical entertainment in these isolated times. Thank you to all our partners and to the creative team who have waived their royalties from this production to raise money for such vital causes in this unbelievably challenging situation. All money raised will support the people throughout our society who are fighting for us on the frontlines and those financially devastated by the crisis, including those in the theatre community. Thank you in advance to those who donate. Now go get into bed with Fleabag! It’s for charity!”
Waller-Bridge, her production company DryWrite, the digital ticketing platform TodayTix and an anonymous donor have given the fundraising efforts an initial boost of $436,000 (356,000 pounds), funds of which have already been distributed to the various causes. Further donations can be made on a dedicated GoFundMe page or via Instagram @FleabagforCharity.
Beginning as a one-woman show at the Edinburgh Fringe in 2013, Fleabag was adapted into the multiple award-winning BBC/Amazon show in 2016 and ran for two seasons. Waller-Bridge revived the theater production in 2019, directed by Vicky Jones, and it played to sold-out shows at the Wyndham Theatre and Off Broadway. The 2019 production was first screened in U.K. cinemas as part of the National Theatre NT Live program last September.