Prince Told RSC Will Pay-Off Debts in Four Years

Article excerpt

The Royal Shakespeare Company last night announced it would more than halve its pounds 2.8 million debt by the end of this financial year.

The announcement was made during the company's annual general meeting, held at the Swan Theatre in Stratford-on-Avon, Warwickshire, and chaired by its president the Prince of Wales.

Artistic director Michael Boyd, who starts his inaugural Festival Season in March 2004, said the deficit he inherited would be reduced by pounds 1.5 million by April and eliminated over the next four years.

He stressed cost-cutting exercises across the company had not affected production and that an extra pounds 800,000 would be spent on the stage next year.

The Prince, who has been president of the RSC since 1991, congratulated the company on weathering turbulent times.

He said: 'I know these have been bruising times for everybody and I congratulate you for having handled these challenges so manfully.'

Prior to the meeting, the Prince toured the production wardrobe, based in a building across from the theatre, where he was guided through the hats and ladies' departments. …