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Performances set to continue following refurbishment of Empire Theatre Toowoomba
Toowoomba Regional Council are finalising a $6 million refurbishment of the Empire Theatre with productions set to resume this month.
Council Property Services Chair, Councillor Geoff McDonald said Stage 1 and 2 of a rolling renewal program will ensure the 108-year-old Empire Theatres complex retains its unique character and its reputation as the leading regional performance centre in the country.
Councillor McDonald advised “the recent work will improve facilities and the overall experience for performers and audiences."
The upgrade involved a major refurbishment of the main auditorium, including seating and carpet replacement, and improvements to the north bar and all foyer areas. Patrons will also enjoy the added feature to the theatre of a new South Bar.
The refurbishment also allows for increased patron comfort with the seat replacement, additional female toilet facilities provided and improvements to accessibility during the theatre interval times.
Councillor McDonald added “a number of local contractors, consultants and sub-contractors were involved in the project and, when available, materials were sourced locally as a preference.
“Council is committed to preserving the heritage listed buildings and features of the treasured complex.
“Local architects experienced in working with heritage listed buildings and theatres were engaged to oversee the recent refurbishments work.
“The works were required to maintain the theatre as the premium venue for the region as outlined in a building condition report completed in 2014.
“This report identified the need for a program of works that were to be implemented over a number of years. The completed works are part of a rolling program of upgrade work at the Empire Theatre.
“Our Region enjoys an enviable reputation as a culturally rich and vibrant community and we are fortunate to have the Empire Theatre as a leading venue for high-quality productions.”
Empire Theatres General Manager, Kerry Saul said the reopening of the refurbished main theatre was an exciting event for Empire Theatre patrons.
Saul stated “the theatre reopens for audiences with the opening night of the Empire Theatres and Heritage Bank hit Broadway musical Kinky Boots, opening on 22nd March.
“Throughout the Kinky Boots season, there will be more than 5000 audience members making full use of the new and improved facilities.
“We have great expectations that the refurbished theatre will please our patrons and improve their overall experience at the Empire Theatre,
“The new Ticket Office is open and operational and our other venues, the Empire Church Theatre and the Armitage Centre have been well utilised while the Empire Theatre has been receiving its facelift.”
The Empire Theatres have a full and comprehensive selection of performances on offer for the remainder of 2019.
For more information about the Empire Theatre go to www.empiretheatre.com.au
Images: Empire Theatre reopens with Broadway musical Kinky Boots on 22nd March (top) and Empire Theatre's exterior (below).
16th December 2018 - Cairns Performing Arts Centre gets official opening
5th November 2018 - $1 million grant to help rebuild Melbourne’s La Mama Theatre
13th September 2018 - Bendigo’s Capital Venues and Events named Performing Arts Centre of the Year
3rd April 2018 - Enta backs Stage Queensland events
4th March 2018 - Toowoomba Skate City closes doors for final time
1st December 2017 - Queensland Theatre celebrates a record-breaking 2017
9th September 2017 - New era for performing arts centre peak body
21st July 2017 - Toowoomba enjoys record-breaking visitor numbers
17th November 2016 - Two years after reopening Isaac Theatre Royal continues to attract recognition
9th October 2015 - New arts advocacy body established in Queensland
3rd July 2014 - Value of the Arts explored at APACA’s annual conference
11th December 2013 - Australian Performing Arts Market heads to Brisbane in February
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