Cambridge’s ADC Theatre and Corpus Playroom set to reopen on 25th May

The venues will still be following social distancing restrictions ‘for as long as they persist’

The ADC Theatre and its sister venue, the Corpus Playroom, are set to reopen from 25th May, according to an article posted on the ADC website on 28th April.

This date for reopening aligns with the government’s roadmap for reopening performing arts venues, after both venues having been closed since the end of 2020.

Both venues will be performing to a socially distanced auditorium and the ADC has said they will follow social distancing restrictions “for as long as they persist”, with coronavirus restrictions set to be fully lifted in late June.

The ADC will also be livestreaming the majority of its shows to their YouTube channel for audience members to watch from home if they would prefer.

All performers and technicians will be following the government’s latest social distancing guidelines, and compulsory face masks, the use of NHS Test and Trace, people being sat with their household and separate from others, and a one-way system in the auditorium will help to keep audience members safe, according to ADC social distancing guidelines.

The reopening of the ADC has been assisted through the financial support of the government’s Culture Recovery Fund. This support is also allowing the ADC to stage an outdoor production of William Shakespeare’s As You Like It, which will be performed in a pop-up venue outside the Fitzwilliam Museum between 16th-26th June.

Both the ADC and the Corpus Playroom are hosting a range of events this term, including Nina Raine’s play Consent, whose original production at the National Theatre received glowing reviews, and a production of the musical Little Shop of Horrors.

When speaking to the Saffron Walden Reporter, the ADC Theatre manager Jamie Rycroft said: “We’re so excited to be bringing back live performance after such a long absence. Having reopened in autumn, we know how to produce exciting works of theatre that are safe and follow restrictions.”

Jamie added: “Being able to reopen the Corpus Playroom for the first time in a year is also great news, and we have a fantastic season of student-written drama and comedy in the space.

“If you are not quite feeling ready to return to an in-person auditorium, we are livestreaming the majority of our ADC shows for you to watch from home.”

Britain’s oldest university playhouse, the ADC is famous for being the starting point of many of Britain’s most famous creatives, from Stephen Fry and Ian McKellen to Emma Thompson and Rachel Weisz.

The ADC presents two shows every evening during term time, as well as a range of other events outside of term, including touring shows and local drama groups.

The Corpus Playroom, an 80-seat, L-shaped studio space located on St Edward’s Passage and belonging to Corpus Christi College, was opened in 1979 by Caroline Oulten and Mark McCrum, and was run for 22 years by the Fletcher Players solely for student drama.

In that time, the theatre has fostered talent such as Hugh Bonneville, Sam Mendes and Stephen Fry. Since 2011, it has been managed by the University of Cambridge through the ADC Theatre. 

You can book tickets for all shows, including to watch a livestream from home, here

Feature image credit: Ben Harris, Creative Commons License, Andrew Dunn, Creative Commons License