The SEAS Festival Finale at the Embassy Theater was a fitting end to another poorly organised Skegness event. I arrived at the Embassy with my young son, we were welcomed into the theater by The Jolly Fisherman to what I was assured was a family night of musical entertainment.
Here’s the information Skegness residents/visitors and the Skegness Tourist Information Center/Embassy Theater staff had available to decide if the Finale was a family friendly event.
From Skegness / Mablethorpe Programme of Events.
6-10.30pm: Grand Finale, Tower Gardens start/Embassy Theatre – musical evening
From SEAS Newsletter 3 – Black/North SEAS
Skegness International, Contemporary Arts Festival
25th September – 3rd October 2009
Architecture Meets Jazz (Part of the Finale Event)
Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA), LSA and New Jazz 5 3-Oct 19:30 -22:30 Embassy Theatre, Skegness Architects have worked with University of Lincoln School of Architecture students to inspire primary school students to design buildings for the future. Meanwhile Dave O’Higgins Biggish Band has mentored Jaz Vehicle – Lincolnshire’s Youth Jazz Orchestra – to create an energetic musical programme which includes a Trio of Brazilian Musicians and London- based Jazzcotech Dancers delivering Street- Fusion dance.
Lincolnshire County Youth Jazz Orchestra, Dave O’ Higgins Biggish Band, SEAS Performances and artworks, Hatch, Butlins, Skegness Silver Band, Butlins Red Coats
3-Oct Starts 17:00 Tower Gardens, Embassy Centre, Skegness
Starting in Tower Gardens, Skegness Silver Band will launch proceedings at 17.00, then we will move to the Embassy Theatre for an informal evening of entertainment, with plenty of opportunities to dip in and out.
No mention of adult entertainment, you would assume the YOUTH Jazz Orchestra which includes young people and a mention of “primary school students” would not be part of an adult show.
When we entered the theater my child and I was hail-stoned by profanity of the most offensive kind and sexual content from the performers on stage!
Since the event was advertised at 7.30 pm on our tickets, but actually started at 7.00 pm (you couldn’t even get the time right) we entered the theater late (approx. 7:15 pm).
The Embassy Theater staff member who took our tickets seemed completely unaware of what was happening on stage, why did she not turn us away or at least give us a warning of the adult based content before we entered the auditorium?
As we entered the auditorium we were flagged down by another member of staff who we’d spoken to during the Daily Dose photographic exhibition a few days earlier, she told us there was a bit of swearing in this and apologised that it might not be suitable for my son, at which point the performer on stage let out a barrage of profanity “f this, f that and f the other” sort of language, which was totally inappropriate for young members of the audience not to mention the young performers waiting back stage! The member of staff appeared embarrassed, she mentioned the jazz band should be on in about 10 minute, so we quickly left the auditorium.
We waited outside for 5-10 minutes hoping the advertised musical performance would be due soon, but upon reentering the theater a new performer was on stage performing a tap dance routine which you’d think was child friendly. We returned to the member of staff who flagged us down earlier and asked if it was safe for my son to stay now? She looked at me blankly and said “I don’t know, I honestly don’t”.
Well we knew after sitting down for 3 minutes (2 minutes was tap dancing), NO it wasn’t safe for my child as he listened to more F’s and sexual content with a woman on stage touching herself and talking about bisexuals! At this point I left the auditorium with my son and stormed home in anger!
Why was there adult entertainment shown during the SEAS Festival Finale without informing:
1. The Tourist Information Center staff: they referred to the SEAS festival program for information when asked and this was not helpful.
2. The Embassy Theater staff: they clearly did not have a clue what was going on and was as surprised as I was at the nights adult based entertainment.
3. The public via the various SEAS programs/newsletters etc… how hard is it to ASK the performers what they would be performing, is it suitable for children for example?
I don’t directly blame the Embassy Theater for this mess, that being said they could and should have protected the young audience as soon as they realised there was a problem. Several things on the night should have been done to prevent children being exposed to this offensive material.
1. The show should have been stopped temporarily and all families with children under 16 or even 18 should have been asked to leave the theater.
2. The lady who took our tickets should have been told what was happening (we arrived late) and not allow more children into the auditorium. As we were leaving families where still entering the theater!
3. As soon as the problem emerged someone should have asked the performers (whoever was in charge back stage) how much of the nights entertainment was adult based and to see if something could be salvaged from this disaster for unsuspecting families attending the Finale.
If those few simple things had have been done then my child and I wouldn’t have been subjected to this SHAME of a Finale and a night ruined resulting in a terrible memory that will stay with us for life.
The blame for this lands squarely on the shoulders of East Lindsey District Council who organised the Skegness SEAS Festival, you had plenty of time to learn about the SEAS Festival, you should have known exactly what was in that Final show! I point the finger directly at you, the SEAS Festival Finale was a disaster and there’s no one to blame, but you!
I hope your happy with yourselves for yet another ill thought out and poorly organised event in Skegness. It was DISGUSTING and the only hope I have is some of you ignorant councilors took your children/grandchildren with you so you got to feel how we did at this event, how dare you put my child through that filth!
And having the Jolly fisherman to shake my child’s hand and welcome us to the theater for a night of ADULT entertainment adds insult to injury.
When I got the tickets from the tourist information office I made it quite clear my son was attending the show and the staff at the Tourist Information Office had no idea about anything that was going on!
When I asked questions about SEAS Festival exhibits and performances throughout the week they just looked it up in the SEAS brochure which didn’t help since the brochure was just filled with artistic blurb that told you nothing, useless in other words.
Skegness is primarily for FAMILIES, remember that and STOP bringing poorly organised events like this to our town. Also please stop encouraging, betting shops, sex parlors and nightclubs that are all adult based to Skegness, we have more than enough already. It’s starting to become a filthy place not just in it’s appearance, but also it’s demeanor, it’s foul that in Skegness sweet shops they sell male and female genitalia on sticks that children can buy!
I for one say NO MORE bring back the family, to the family resort that was Skegness.
If the council could just pause for a second from giving themselves another large and continuous pat on the back for yet another white elephant of an event then maybe they could learn something and truly improve Skegness for families.
I have never written a complaint before, but this council beggars belief, your organisation skills are non existent from what I have had the misfortune to witness of how incompetent you are. 60 ELDC councilor’s in total and not one of you could find your britches to pull them over your heads.
I am insulted, disgusted and upset, as I write this I’m crying with tears in my eyes and anger in my heart, look at what you are doing to Skegness!
I want to know why this happened, exactly what went wrong and who was responsible for allowing children into an adult show?
Your response will be published online at http://www.skegness-attractions.co.uk/
Enraged Marie Law