Lockdown FAQ

This page is now out of date, please go to these links for more up to date info:

>> Safety in classes

>> Safety in shows

>> Full booking flexibility

>> Improv at 2m is still fun!

>> Hoopla’s full risk assessment

>> Government guidelines for performing arts

 

 

Previous update from 2nd April 2020, from Steve Roe (Director of Hoopla):

First of all many thanks to all of our students, improvisers, teachers, front of house and support team! We really appreciate your patience in all this and thank you for all of your kind works and support.

Hoopla’s purpose is to bring people together to socialise and have fun with improv. We aim to bring the joy of improv to as many people as possible, and aim to make improv fun, friendly, sociable, open and accessible to all. During lockdown we’re keeping all of this going with:

We will be back in the real world as soon as we are advised it is safe to do so!

We are still employing our support staff and front-of-house staff through lockdown and supporting our freelance teachers. All of our venues, teachers and performers are ready to come back as soon as possible. So fear not, Hoopla will be back in the real world soon!

All of our postponed Spring courses we are hoping to finish or start in the Summer once we are given the go-ahead. We are aiming to start our Autumn season in September and October as normal.

We’ve put some specific FAQs below for three main groups:

  • If your course was part finished on 16th March.
  • If your course or class had only just started or hadn’t started yet on 16th March.
  • If you are booking for September onwards.

 

If your course was part finished on 16th March.

We had a large number of courses in progress when we had to temporarily postpone everything from 16th March. We know that must have been very frustrating, especially as some only had one class left or were about to do an end of course show. Thank you for your patience during all this.

To say thank you for waiting we will be doing the following when courses re-start:

  • Put on an extra class with the teacher, so you get some extra time to reconnect to everyone and get back into improv.
  • Take your whole class out for drinks at the first workshop back to say thanks for waiting.
  • Automatically invite you and a friend to our FREE welcome back to the real-world party at our venue featuring Massaoke (when big events are allowed again).

When will my course/class be finished?

We are currently waiting until the Government says it is safe to re-start theatres. Our classes are probably safer than theatres as we have smaller numbers of people and are less crowded, so when it’s announced safe for theatres to start our classes will re-start too.

Once we have that information we will reschedule all postponed classes as soon as possible, ideally in the same venues with the same teacher on the same night of the week. We predict we’ll need about a two week turnaround to do this, so that our teachers and students have enough notice. We do have a large schedule to reorganise so we appreciate your patience with this.

We are monitoring news from the Government, NHS and Public Health England and we are also monitoring the wider theatre and events industry for news of when the best re-start date will be. We want to wait until there is reliable information about that so we can make an informed and safe decision.

Our initial aim was to finish courses in June or July. If that turns out to be incorrect though and things are still in lockdown then we will reschedule for August or September. We will wait until further government, NHS and Public Health England advise before making definite decisions on dates.

What will you do once you have new dates for postponed courses?

We will write to everyone on email with dates, course by course, once we have new details for their postponed course.

What if I can’t make the new dates?

When we send out replacement dates just let us know if you can’t make them and we will send out alternatives, we will make sure you get to do the full course/class. We have courses starting every month throughout the year, so we are sure we can find something for you and we are always happy to be flexible with bookings. Alternatively you are welcome to transfer your booking to a friend instead.

Is my booking and payment safe?

Yes. Hoopla has been running for almost 15 years and although we are pausing during lockdown we are not going anywhere and we will be back bigger and better once we are given the all-clear to reopen. We have a large network of venues we work with that are ready to re-open, and a huge teaching team, and will be continuing as normal after the lockdown is over and look forward to have you be part of that.

Can I get a refund for missed classes instead?

The coronavirus is making it tough for the arts industry, as due to circumstances beyond our control we are going to have ride out at least two months of minimal income while still paying for our core team and other expenses. So unfortunately we will not be automatically offering refunds on bookings and instead ask people to please come back to finish their course once lockdown is over.

We are not cancelling any courses, and they will be finished off or run at a later date and we will make sure everyone receives the full course they have paid for.

However if you are in financial trouble due to lockdown or have now left the UK we will happily make an exception and give you a refund for any outstanding classes unfinished, just email classes@hooplaimpro.com and we will process that for you.

Could I move to a different course instead of the one I’m currently booked on?

Yes that’s ok, we are always happy to accommodate people with whatever works for them. Email classes@hooplaimpro.com and we will process that for you.

Can I move to an online course instead of wait to finish my real-world course?

Yes. Just email classes@hooplaimpro.com and we will process that for you and work out any refund in difference of payment due.

Why don’t you finish off the courses online?

We did think about that. Online is still fun, it’s better than no improv, but it’s not as fun as real-world and we really want to give you the full course experience. However if you would like to move to an online course instead please do get in touch.

Will the end of course shows still happen?

Yes. We love end of course shows and they are really important to us. There were a number of courses that had end of course shows coming up. These will all be run, and we’ll even put on an extra workshop for free with your teacher so that you can get back into improv before doing them. Once it’s announced by the government as safe for theatres to re-open we will start scheduling in all of the outstanding end of course shows. It may take us around 3 weeks to do this, which will also give the group enough time to invite audience along.

 

If your course or class had only just started or hadn’t started yet on 16th March.

We also had a large number of courses and classes that were fully booked for March-June and were due to start but have been postponed, and a number of courses that only had one workshop happen before lockdown started. Again thank you so much to everyone for your patience with all of this, especially those of you who are totally new to improv and due to start a beginners taster day or beginners course.

To say thank you for waiting we will be doing the following when your course or class starts:

  • Put on an extra class with the teacher, or give you credit to do an additional class with us.
  • Take your whole class out for drinks after the first workshop back to say thanks for waiting.
  • Automatically invite you and a friend to our FREE welcome back to the real-world party at our venue featuring Massaoke (when big events are allowed again).

When will my course/class start?

Around 5 weeks after the Government says it is safe to re-start theatres.

Ideally in the same venues with the same teacher on the same night of the week.

When that announcement comes we will first need to finish courses that were already underway, which will take us around 3 weeks. Then once those are finished we will be able to start the new courses (or courses where only 1 class happened). We will give you around 5 weeks notice on this so you are hopefully able to make them. We do have a large schedule to reorganise so we appreciate your patience with this.

Our initial aim was to re-start courses in June or July. If that turns out to be incorrect though and things are still in lockdown then we will reschedule for August or September. We will wait until further government, NHS and Public Health England advise though before making that decision.

What will you do once you have new dates for postponed courses?

We will write back to everyone on email with dates, course by course, once we have new details for their postponed course.

What if I can’t make the new dates?

When we send out replacement dates just let us know if you can’t make them and we will send out alternatives, we will make sure you get to do the full course/class. We have courses starting every month throughout the year, so we are sure we can find something for you and we are always happy to be flexible with bookings. Alternatively you are welcome to transfer your booking to a friend instead.

Is my booking and payment safe?

Yes. Hoopla has been running for almost 15 years and although we are pausing during lockdown we are not going anywhere and we will be back bigger and better once we are given the all-clear to reopen. We have a large network of venues we work with that are ready to re-open, and a huge teaching team, and will be continuing as normal after the worse of the lockdown is over and look forward to have you be part of that.

Can I get a refund instead?

The coronavirus is making it tough for the arts industry, as due to circumstances beyond our control we are going to have ride out at least two months of minimal income while still paying for our core team and other expenses. So unfortunately we will not be automatically offering refunds on bookings and instead ask people to please come back to finish their course once lockdown is over.

We are not cancelling any courses, and they will be finished off or run at a later date and we will make sure everyone receives the full course they have paid for.

However if you are in financial trouble due to lockdown or you are no longer going to be in the UK after June we will happily make an exception and give you a refund, just email classes@hooplaimpro.com and we will process that for you.

Could I move to a different course instead of the one I’m currently booked on?

Yes that’s ok, we are happy to accommodate people with whatever works for them. Once we are advised on the best time to re-open we will put all of our courses for next season on the website and you will be welcome to use your booking for any of them.

Can I move to an online course instead of wait to start my real-world course?

Yes. Just email classes@hooplaimpro.com and we will process that for you and refund you any difference in payment.

 

If you are booking for September onwards.

Are the September and October courses on your website happening in the real-world or online?

Real world. We’re aiming to start our Autumn season in all of our venues in September and October as normal. We are gradually adding our Autumn season to the website, it should all be up by the end of May.

Why September and October?

We monitored the wider events industry, theatre industry and sports industry and they had a spread of May-October as predicted re-opening dates. We chose the more careful September and October end of the scale to minimise the risk of having to postpone courses again. Also if things are back to normal in June and July we will still need that time to run courses that have been postponed from March and April.

Will it be safe then?

If the government announces it is safe for theatres and schools to re-open then it will be safe for Hoopla’s classes to re-open. We are smaller class sizes than schools, smaller numbers of people than theatres, and so feel we’ll be safe to open once the Government announces the re-opening of schools and theatres.

What happens if lockdown is still running in September and October?

If that happens you will be able to move your booking and payment to a later course or receive a full refund on your booking. So any bookings made for September and October are safe, and can be refunded or moved if lockdown is still on – whatever you prefer.

 

Can I talk to you in more detail about this?

Yes, my personal number is 0797 697 5348 and I’m happy to have a chat, or you can email classes@hooplaimpro.com.

 

If you are stuck, without food, or in a vulnerable situation

Please contact us. We have a network of teachers, improvisers and students across London and surrounding area and we should be able to send someone to help out.

 

More Info:

>> Safety in classes

>> Safety in shows

>> Full booking flexibility

>> Improv at 2m is still fun!

>> Hoopla’s full risk assessment

>> Government guidelines for performing arts

 

 

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