Waterford’s theatre-loving public, along with the plain, downright curious will get a chance to see the renovated Theatre Royal in all its glory on Friday and Saturday next, October 9th and 10th.
The theatre, which re-opens its doors for performances on October 21st before its grand opening in early November, has been superbly renovated, as sneak Munster Express peeks of the ‘Royal’ can happily reveal.
Trying out the new seating in the stalls, one can report that the taller theatregoers among us will have a little more leg room than was provided in the older seating arrangement!
The theatre’s new recess lighting, hand-made wallpaper, along with the delightful mural of the city’s old ‘Timber Toes’ bridge over the stage look set to provide the venue with a new lease of life.
The famed chandelier has been re-installed and now consists of up-lighters fitted by former Waterford Crystal staff, which shall illuminate the dome of the theatre in a manner never previously achieved.
A greatly extended pit area allows greater space for musicians and the slope of the old theatre stage has now been removed and replaced by a completely new set of boards to tread upon.
The former box office area and foyer, a shared space with City Hall, has been stunningly refurbished and features works from the city’s Municipal Art collection, some of which had been stored away for several years.
One impressed visitor to the theatre stopped a man outside the Royal last Thursday morning and pleaded with him: “Oh my goodness, it’s fantastic, you must go in.” Little did the lady know that she was in fact talking to well-known city playwright Jim Nolan!
A new café (open from 8.30am to 4.30pm, Mon-Fri), which is being operated by the Dunmore East-based Lemon Tree Café, opened yesterday (Thursday) and recorded a brisk opening day’s business.
And, in a delightful nod to an old theatre tradition on the Mall, a fully licensed bar under the management of The Munster Bar will operate in the Royal on the evenings in which it will hosts performances.
The free tours of the renovated theatre will be 30 minutes long, running on Friday next, October 9th at 5, 6, 7, 8 and 9pm and on Saturday, October 10th at 10am, 11am and 12noon. More times shall be added if demand so requires it!
For further details call the Box Office on 051-874402 or log onto www.theatreroyal.ie