On Thursday, August 28th, the Strand Theatre in Carrick-on-Suir will be officially opened, marking the culmination of a decade of hard graft undertaken by the town’s Musical Society.

The official opening will be performed by Tipperary South TD and Minister for State Martin Mansergh, widely acknowledged for the major role he played in securing funds for the facility.

An invited audience of political and theatrical figures, along with the friends and patrons of the theatre will attend a concert featuring the principals and chorus of the Musical Society.

Thanks to a series of one-off and monthly donations, the friends of the theatre – largely spread across South Tipperary, South Kilkenny and County Waterford, have helped convert the Strand into a top class artistic centre.

The ‘Name a Seat’ initiative, previously reported in this newspaper, has also proven a source of additional monies for theatre management.

A ‘meet and greet’ will kick the evening off, followed by a conducted tour of the expanded theatre, which now features an entrance off Dillon Bridge, a lift, rehearsal rooms and expanded dressing rooms.

There will also be finger food, wine, tea, coffee and soft drinks provided to guests, ahead of Minister Mansergh’s official opening.

The concert will be directed by Musical Director and AIMS winner Fergal Carroll, backed by full orchestral support, bringing the curtain down on what should prove a great night in the Strand.

* Rehearsals for the concert get underway at the Strand on Thursday next, August 7th at 8pm, with Chorus Mistress Catriona O’Dwyer at the keyboard.