Amanda Holden has set Polka Theatre’s £1 million fundraising campaign off to a flying start by pledging a prize that money just can’t buy.
During a visit to the theatre last month, the Britain’s Got Talent (BGT) judge announced she is giving fans the chance to enter a prize draw for four tickets to the BGT live semi-finals.
Not only will the winner get to watch the live show at Fountain Studios in Wembley, they will also get the once in a lifetime chance to rub shoulders with Ms Holden backstage.
Ms Holden has donated the prize to support the FUTURE POLKA redevelopment scheme, the designs for which include a multi-sensory garden and a creative learning space.
Ms Holden said: “I first became aware of Polka Theatre in Wimbledon around 2008 when my daughter Lexi was about two years old. I wanted to take her to see a show that was suitable for young children. Since then we’ve seen so many shows there together and as a family.”
The pioneering 40-year-old theatre shut its doors for the first time on 17 February and Ms Holden combined saying farewell to the old Polka with saying hello to a school group who came to see Wind in the Willows.
The surrounding community has already been backing the FUTURE POLKA campaign, in particular Wimbledon based payments solutions company Icon Solutions, who have donated £100,000.
Icon Solutions’ commercial director, Tom Kelleher, said: “It is an honour to be associated with Polka Theatre and we will continue to support their valuable work and the joy they bring to so many.”
The UK’s first children’s theatre will reopen in Summer 2020, but the campaign still needs public support to make the new Polka a unique and inclusive theatre space to be enjoyed by all children aged 0-12 years.
Ms Holden herself is no stranger the stage, having trod, or rather Charlestoned the boards as the West End star of Thoroughly Modern Millie and is a firm believer in the power of drama to inspire children.
The Give a Pet a Home presenter said: “I feel it is enormously beneficial for children to be lucky enough to experience the atmosphere of sitting in a theatre to open their minds & imaginations from an early age.
“Going to the West End can be an expensive activity for a family which is why investment in local theatres is essential, particularly one like Polka that creates work designed especially for children. Together I know we can raise the £1m needed for a first class venue.”
To donate to the FUTURE POLKA appeal or to enter the prize draw for tickets to Britain’s Got Talent, please visit https://polkatheatre.com/
Feature image credit: Oscar May.