New Life Breathed Into Corpus

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The Corpus Playroom, Cambridge's most popular small theatre venue, will receive a £100k revamp and switch management over the summer vacation.

This summer, the Corpus Playroom will undergo a £100,000 redevelopment, the University confirmed today.

The notorious dressing-room and backstage space will be part of the overhaul, as well as new technical equipment to boot, in what is the culmination of The Playroom Project.

The project, launched last year by the Fletcher Players – Corpus’s drama society – has already seen improvements  in the performance area and seating.

It has the backing of many donors, and once even had Stephen Fry as its patron. In a letter of support he said: “I might be said to owe the Playroom everything.” Fry’s first play, Latin!: Tobacco and Boys premièred at the Playroom’s opening in 1979, and its success prompted his first collaboration with Hugh Laurie.

Where the magic happens

The redevelopment will affect audiences as well as performers – as part of the changes the Playroom will now be managed by the ADC Theatre, whose box office will be available for on-line ticket sales. There will also be a new box office area with sofas and vending machines.

Max Upton, Fletcher Players President, told The Tab that he is “thrilled to bits about this new partnership… [it] will impact brilliantly on what is already a gloriously vibrant theatrical scene… in short this is going to be great!”

Playroom veteran Ben Blyth, of The Movement theatre company, welcomed the changes – particularly to backstage – telling The Tab: “It used to be gross but now it will be good.” He also expressed a slight concern about the new management: “it’s excellent news, as long as the ADC stay away from programming.”

The playroom hosted the winners of last term’s award from The Tab for Best Mainshow and Best Musical, as well as other critically-acclaimed shows. Providing this well-deserved and much-needed attention to one of Cambridge’s favourite venues can only be a good thing for the theatre scene.

Even The Theatre Guide Dog can’t think of anything bad to say…

  • Max Upton

    M'full quotation: 'I am absolutely thrilled to bits about this new partnership. It marks the biggest pooling of resources in the history of Cambridge drama and will impact brilliantly upon what is already a gloriously vibrant theatrical scene. The word 'excited' doesn't come close to how I'm feeling about the Playroom renovations: the basement shall no longer be a minefield of props and splinters but will be transformed into a dressing room and workshop to be proud of. Also, audiences will no longer have to sprint down the street for interval conveniences. The current green room will become a box office, complete with sofas and vending machines. Furthermore, the ADC programme will now feature both their own shows and those of the Playroom, hopefully introducing this wonderful venue to those who may not have been aware of it previously. In short, this is going to be great! I’m extremely grateful to both the ADC and Corpus Christi for allowing this deal to go ahead and special mention must also go to Toby Jones and his tireless efforts and enthusiasm in these proceedings.’

    • whazzup

      wow, vending machines. Hooray more chances to buy stuff- in the middle of a play!

  • a bennett

    "Playroom veteran Ben Blyth, of The Movement theatre company, welcomed the changes"

    Wonder why you interviewed him Kieran…

    • Kieran

      he's done a lot of plays and was on facebook at the time. journalism.

    • Truth

      You're not Abi because you don't sound fit enough to go out with a Movement member. And no one will ever interview you about anything.

  • Max Upton Fan

    Max Upton is an incredibly nice man.

  • FeliXXX

    Kieran Cockonman more like

  • LovesthePlayroom

    “It used to be gross but now it will be good.”

    I suppose there's a reason actors get given scripts… maybe leave the quotations to the writers?

    • Irony Man

      maybe leave the commenting to people who understand irony.

  • Wooooo

    Great news for the Playroom! Here's hoping it can actually become the celebrated fringe theatre venue it deserves to be!

  • Stay at the Gate!

    So excited xx

  • Upton Girl

    I love Max Upton.

  • Comments on this?

    “it’s excellent news, as long as the ADC stay away from programming.”

    • Unsure

      I'm a little confused personally: I don't know what the worry is. Won't productions be selected as they always have been?

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