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Thread: Liverpool’s Theatrical Traditions

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    Default Liverpool’s Theatrical Traditions

    Unlike the Music Halls in Liverpool, which only began in the mid-19th Century, theatres can be traced to early times. In 1073 there was recorded entertainment at Liverpool Castle by Norman ‘jongleurs’. From their performances, the name Juggler Street was given to what is now called High Street.

    Records of 1571 give evidence that Tudor Liverpool burgesses licensed wandering players to act and perform and also indicate the establishment of two theatres. One indoor theatre was based in the second floor of the Town Hall where Liverpool scholars gave performances.

    Another was originally a cockfight pit that was reconstructed in 1567 as an attraction to the town for gentlemen and others. The Cockpit Yard Theatre was between Drury Lane and Moor Street. It remained the centre of dramatic entertainment until about 1810 when it was demolished to make way for a corn warehouse.

    Another early playhouse (again originally a cockfight pit) was the Blackberry Lane Theatre (Eberle Street, off Dale Street). It opened in the early 1740’s when a company of players performed “The Tempest”. In 1742, Irish players from Dublin performed there. It later became a warehouse.

    The growth of trade with America and Africa led to an expansion of new patronage and influence in the delivery of drama in Liverpool. Alderman Thomas Steers, Mayor 1739, was responsible for the construction of the first real theatre in Liverpool. It opened in 1740 as the Old Ropery, being a two-storey building on the site which had once been Liverpool Castle. The theatre was on the ground floor, with a dancing academy above. It was demolished in 1786.

    c1750 – Drury Lane Theatre

    Named after the famous London Theatre. Built between the Old Ropery Theatre and Brunswick Street.

    At the time Liverpool was a popular seaside resort and for many years numerous wealthy families came for the summer bathing season. Theatre attendances were also boosted; Drury Lane entertained with comedies and plays. During 1758 and 1759 refurbishment took place to erect a partition between better-class patrons and drunken sailors! The theatre was later converted into a warehouse.

    1772 – The Theatre Royal Williamson Square.

    The theatre was large and elegantly furnished. It was lit by candles and oil lamps (gas not being introduced until early 19th Century). The Theatre Royal continued to be popular with rich and poor alike, though often the scene or riots, confusion and excessive drinking among certain members of the audience! Due to its increasingly bad conditions and rivalry from other developing theatres it was closed in 1802 and demolished. A new Theatre Royal was built on the site in 1803.

    1795 – Christian Street Circus

    Here were the best set of entertainments remembered in Liverpool. It originally opened as a riding school with equestrian shows. As a circus, performances included horsemanship, tight-rope walking, dancing, and equestrian exercises. It became the Olympic Circus in 1805 and was enlarged and refurbished during the next three years.

    Its fortunes declined after the opening of John Cooke’s circus in Great Charlotte Street, 1826. So the Olympic Circus was converted into a theatre, reopening in 1831 as Queen’s Theatre. Refurbished once again it opened in 1846 as Theatre Royal Adelphi performing Shakespearean plays and pantomimes.

    * 1869 Became the Adelphi Music Hall and Theatre of Varieties
    * 1906 Converted into a Gymnastic Club
    * 1912 Converted into a Cinema
    * 1922 Demolished and new Adelphi Cinema built on site
    * 1941 Destroyed in bombing raid , WWII
    * 1803 New Theatre Royal - Williamson Square.

    Built after the demotion of old Theatre Royal (1772-1802). It had a horseshoe shaped auditorium with very good views and acoustics. It presented dramatic plays and Italian Operas and was completely renovated in 1843.

    1871 - Renamed Theatre Royal Palace of Varieties (Short Music Hall Span)
    1872 - Theatre Royal and Opera House
    1884 - Converted to a Circus
    1890 - Converted to a Cold Store
    1970 - Demolished

    (Site now occupied by retail units, including Liverpool FC Shop)

    1824 - The Pantheon, Church Street
    Presented dramatic plays.
    1829 - Renamed Liver Theatre
    1850 - Converted into shops
    1826 - Cooke’s New CircusQueen’s Square, Great Charlotte Street.

    The Amphitheatre - originally opened as a circus by John Cooke to continue the success of the Olympic Circus in Christian Street.

    1840 - Became The Royal Amphitheatre with drama, ballet and musicals
    1888 - Renamed The Royal Court. Continues as one of Liverpool’s leading theatres with operas and pantomimes.
    1933 - Reopened as a music hall, but fire destroyed the interior.
    1938 - Reopened for stage plays but not varieties.

    After a period of uncertainty in the late 70’s and early 80’s due to financial funding problems (in common with many theatres nationwide), the theatre has re-established itself offering varied entertainment – operas, ballets, musicals, comedies, dramatic plays, group and rock concerts.

    1846~1860 - The Hop, Dale Street Presented plays and exhibitions at cheap rates.

    1880 - Renamed Saunder’s Theatre of Varieties
    1881~1884 Became City Theatre of Varieties
    1884~1894 Became Grand Theatre of Varieties
    1895~1904 Became New Grand Theatre and Opera House
    1904 - Name changed to Queen’s Theatre
    Later renamed Kelly’s Theatre (After proprietor Alderman William Wallace Kelly) presenting variety performances.

    Closed 1916. Became a restaurant and warehouse until bombed in May 1941

    1850 -Queen’s Hall and then Bijou Opera House, Bold Street - Music and dancing entertainments
    1890’s - Became shops
    1852 - Royal Park Theatre, Park Street - Plays and pantomimes. Converted into a warehouse in the 1900’s
    1859 - Theatre Varieté, Lime Street
    1868 - Renamed St James’ Hall
    1896 - Tivoli Palace of Varieties

    “Negro” [aka “black-face”] minstrel shows, plays, ballets operas, comedies and musicals all in the repertoire.

    1900’s - Became a cinema until 1959.

    Closed because of decreasing cinema attendances. Nowadays redeveloped as shops.

    1861 - Prince of Wales Theatre, Clayton Street
    Performances of plays
    1901 - Cinematography shows

    1866 - Alexandra Theatre, Lime Street. Became the Empire Theatre.

    The Empire Theatre was opened on 19th December 1896 with a popular performance of Cinderella. Demolished 1924

    1925 - New Empire Theatre now occupies the site. Popular shows from London, operas, ballets plays, comedies, pop and rock concerts, etc all in the repertoire.

    1980’s - The Arts Council chose it over the Royal Court to receive funding
    Late 1990’s Redevelopment makes the Empire the biggest theatre outside London – further phases of building work ongoing [not without controversy as it absorbed the neighbouring public house, a pub having been on that site since at least the 18th century].

    1866 - Star Music Hall, Williamson Square
    1896 - Star Theatre of Varieties
    1899 - Star Theatre
    1911 - Liverpool Repertory Theatre

    1917 - Playhouse Theatre

    Concerts, operas, ballets, comedies and music on the original repertoire. Later focused on repertory theatre, becoming one of the most prestigious provincial repertory theatres in the country well into the 1980’s
    Home to London Old Vic Theatre during Second World War.

    After a period of renewed success (and refurbishment) in the 1990’s under the guidance of local lad Bill Kenwright, financial problems saw the Playhouse’s closure in 1998.

    It has since reopened – refurbished once more - in partnership with the Everyman Theatre on Hope Street.

    The Playhouse remains today as Merseyside’s sole surviving theatre from the Victorian era. [The modern extension, which some feel sits ill at ease with the original building, was nevertheless felt to be architecturally worthy of being listed, and preserved in the recent refurbishment!]

    1867 - The Prince Patrick Hall, Camden Street
    Later renamed Wellington Hall and then the Gaiety Theatre
    Now Commercial building

    1869 - The original Rotunda Music Hall and Theatre, Stanley Road
    Music, singing, plays, pantomimes and melodramas presented.
    Rebuilt in 1876 after a fire.

    1876 - Circus

    Charles Hengler, from a Copenhagen circus family, opened a circus at the junction of Everton Road and West Derby Road. 4,000 spectator arena. Closed in 1901, later converted into the Royal Hippodrome Theatre of Varieties, later becoming a cinema, then a bingo hall.

    1888 - Shakespeare Theatre, Fraser Street Presented plays, varieties and annual pantomimes.

    1963 - Dance Hall
    1976 - Destroyed by fire, was to have become a comedy/ cabaret venue under the guidance of impressario/ DJ Pete Price

    1913 - Crane Hall and Theatre, Hanover Street
    1969 Became the Neptune Theatre Built above Crane’s Music Store, originally as piano rehearsal/ demonstration rooms – hence the unusual location.

    Hosts professional and amateur dramatic groups and dance schools. Annual pantomimes and children’s shows throughout the year as well as a venue for a successful “comedy club” of cabaret performances by national and international artistes. Still continues shows with well-attended audiences.

    1964 - Everyman Theatre, Hope Street

    Originally opened as a cinema 1961-63, on the site of a former Methodist meeting hall [the nationally renowned Everyman Bistro occupies the basement i.e. the crypt/ mortuary!]. In 1964 the theatre aimed to offer adult play-goers the chance to see dramas performed by a young, experienced company as well as matinees for children.


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    1977 - The new Everyman Theatre appealing to young students wanting alternative repertoire and foreign films.

    Variety continues today. Everyman Youth Theatre project exists training young people with an interest in theatrical arts. Another Liverpool theatre with a history of financial problems in the 80’s and 90’s, the Bistro took over the running of the theatre above it!

    The Everyman is now the partner of the Liverpool Playhouse.

    1980- Unity Theatre, Hope Place.

    Sited in a converted synagogue and the home of more radical theatre groups for some years prior to becoming the Unity Theatre.
    Funded by Arts Council and Local Authority, offers a mixed programme of professional and local groups – dance, drama, mime, new writings and ethnic arts, as well as a youth project and workshops for children.

    source unknown
    Last edited by Kev; 03-26-2007 at 09:08 PM.
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    Kev
    2005 - 2017

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    PhilipG
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    It's a pity the source is unknown because there's quite a lot of mistakes there.

    BTW Kev, where are you getting all these "Liverpool's Storys" from?
    They're great.

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    Creator & Administrator Kev's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PhilipG View Post
    It's a pity the source is unknown because there's quite a lot of mistakes there.

    BTW Kev, where are you getting all these "Liverpool's Storys" from?
    They're great.
    Cheers Phil, the texts form part of a larger project on the sytstems of some Liverpool schools, I don't know who wrote them specifically although aknowledgements are made for the 'whole' cd, if you know what I mean

    I was counting on members too highlight any errors
    Liverpool in Pictures/ YO! Liverpool has taken me over 10 years to develop and maintain.

    All server & domain costs are covered by myself & kind donations of individuals.

    If you like the website, please donatevia PayPal!




    Thank you


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  4. #4
    PhilipG
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    I've corrected the most obvious mistakes in bold, and moved some of the sentences down a space, as they ran into each other.

    Most of the corrections come from R. J. Broadbent's "Annals of the Liverpool Stage" (1908), which is the definitive history of Liverpool's theatres.

    Ironically, most of the mistakes come from a much more recent book about Liverpool's theatres.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kev View Post
    Unlike the Music Halls in Liverpool, which only began in the mid-19th Century, theatres can be traced to early times. In 1073 there was recorded entertainment at Liverpool Castle by Norman ‘jongleurs’. From their performances, the name Juggler Street was given to what is now called High Street.

    Records of 1571 give evidence that Tudor Liverpool burgesses licensed wandering players to act and perform and also indicate the establishment of two theatres. One indoor theatre was based in the second floor of the Town Hall where Liverpool scholars gave performances.

    Another was originally a cockfight pit that was reconstructed in 1567 as an attraction to the town for gentlemen and others. The Cockpit Yard Theatre was between Drury Lane and Moor Street. It remained the centre of dramatic entertainment until about 1810 when it was demolished to make way for a corn warehouse.

    Another early playhouse (again originally a cockfight pit) was the Blackberry Lane Theatre (Eberle Street, off Dale Street). It opened in the early 1740’s when a company of players performed “The Tempest”. In 1742, Irish players from Dublin performed there. It later became a warehouse.

    The growth of trade with America and Africa led to an expansion of new patronage and influence in the delivery of drama in Liverpool. Alderman Thomas Steers, Mayor 1739, was responsible for the construction of the first real theatre in Liverpool. It opened in 1740 as the Old Ropery, being a two-storey building on the site which had once been Liverpool Castle. The theatre was on the ground floor, with a dancing academy above. It was demolished in 1786.

    The Old Ropery theatre wasn't on the site of the castle. It was named after the street it was in. Old Ropery was (and probably still is) off Fenwick Street.
    The opening date isn't known, but was thought to be about 1740. It was made into a warehouse. Broadbent makes no mention of it being demolished.


    c1750 – Drury Lane Theatre
    Named after the famous London Theatre. Built between the Old Ropery Theatre and Brunswick Street.

    At the time Liverpool was a popular seaside resort and for many years numerous wealthy families came for the summer bathing season. Theatre attendances were also boosted; Drury Lane entertained with comedies and plays. During 1758 and 1759 refurbishment took place to erect a partition between better-class patrons and drunken sailors! The theatre was later converted into a warehouse.

    1772 – The Theatre Royal Williamson Square.
    The theatre was large and elegantly furnished. It was lit by candles and oil lamps (gas not being introduced until early 19th Century). The Theatre Royal continued to be popular with rich and poor alike, though often the scene or riots, confusion and excessive drinking among certain members of the audience! Due to its increasingly bad conditions and rivalry from other developing theatres it was closed in 1802 and demolished. A new Theatre Royal was built on the site in 1803.



    1795 – Christian Street Circus

    Here were the best set of entertainments remembered in Liverpool. It originally opened as a riding school with equestrian shows. As a circus, performances included horsemanship, tight-rope walking, dancing, and equestrian exercises. It became the Olympic Circus in 1805 and was enlarged and refurbished during the next three years.

    Its fortunes declined after the opening of John Cooke’s circus in Great Charlotte Street, 1826. So the Olympic Circus was converted into a theatre, reopening in 1831 as Queen’s Theatre. Refurbished once again it opened in 1846 as Theatre Royal Adelphi performing Shakespearean plays and pantomimes.

    * 1869 Became the Adelphi Music Hall and Theatre of Varieties
    * 1906 Converted into a Gymnastic Club
    * 1912 Converted into a Cinema
    * 1922 Demolished and new Adelphi Cinema built on site
    * 1941 Destroyed in bombing raid , WWII

    The old Adelphi was demolished and replaced by a library at the front and Clare Street Wash House at the rear.
    The bombed cinema was on a completely different site.


    * 1803 New Theatre Royal - Williamson Square.

    Built after the demotion of old Theatre Royal (1772-1802).

    The old theatre wasn't demolished, just altered with a new frontage.

    It had a horseshoe shaped auditorium with very good views and acoustics. It presented dramatic plays and Italian Operas and was completely renovated in 1843.

    1871 - Renamed Theatre Royal Palace of Varieties (Short Music Hall Span)
    1872 - Theatre Royal and Opera House
    1884 - Converted to a Circus
    1890 - Converted to a Cold Store
    1970 - Demolished

    (Site now occupied by retail units, including Liverpool FC Shop)

    1824 - The Pantheon, Church Street
    Presented dramatic plays.
    1829 - Renamed Liver Theatre
    1850 - Converted into shops

    1826 - Cooke’s New Circus Queen’s Square, Great Charlotte Street.
    The Amphitheatre - originally opened as a circus by John Cooke to continue the success of the Olympic Circus in Christian Street.

    1840 - Became The Royal Amphitheatre with drama, ballet and musicals
    1888 - Renamed The Royal Court. Continues as one of Liverpool’s leading theatres with operas and pantomimes.
    1933 - Reopened as a music hall, but fire destroyed the interior.
    1938 - Reopened for stage plays but not varieties.

    After a period of uncertainty in the late 70’s and early 80’s due to financial funding problems (in common with many theatres nationwide), the theatre has re-established itself offering varied entertainment – operas, ballets, musicals, comedies, dramatic plays, group and rock concerts.

    The 1933 theatre was demolished after the fire, and the 1938 building was completely new.

    1846~1860 - The Hop, Dale Street Presented plays and exhibitions at cheap rates.

    The Hop was also called The Penny Hop, but nothing else.
    The following refers to Paradise Street, which was built as a chapel in 1791. The Chapel closed in 1849, and the building reopened about 1850 as the Royal Colosseum Theatre and Music Hall.
    In 1878, there was a false cry of "Fire" which resulted in a panic in which 37 people died. This was even reported in the Illustrated London News.


    1880 - Renamed Saunder’s Theatre of Varieties
    1881~1884 Became City Theatre of Varieties
    1884~1894 Became Grand Theatre of Varieties
    1895~1904 Became New Grand Theatre and Opera House
    1904 - Name changed to Queen’s Theatre
    Later renamed Kelly’s Theatre (After proprietor Alderman William Wallace Kelly) presenting variety performances.

    Closed 1916. Became a restaurant and warehouse until bombed in May 1941

    1850 -Queen’s Hall and then Bijou Opera House, Bold Street - Music and dancing entertainments
    1890’s - Became shops

    1852 - Royal Park Theatre, Park Street - Plays and pantomimes. Converted into a warehouse in the 1900’s

    The Royal Park Theatre was in Parliament Street, and was opened in an existing warehouse building (the neighbouring warehouses are still there).
    It opened in 1852, and lasted about 10 years, after which it reverted to being a warehouse.


    1859 - Theatre Varieté, Lime Street
    1868 - Renamed St James’ Hall
    1896 - Tivoli Palace of Varieties

    “Negro” [aka “black-face”] minstrel shows, plays, ballets operas, comedies and musicals all in the repertoire.

    1900’s (1908) - Became a cinema (the Palais de Luxe) until 1959.

    Closed because of decreasing cinema attendances. Nowadays redeveloped as shops.

    1861 - Prince of Wales Theatre, Clayton Street
    Performances of plays
    1901 - Cinematography shows

    1866 - Alexandra Theatre, Lime Street. Became the Empire Theatre.

    The Empire Theatre was opened on 19th December 1896 with a popular performance of Cinderella. Demolished 1924

    1925 - New Empire Theatre now occupies the site. Popular shows from London, operas, ballets plays, comedies, pop and rock concerts, etc all in the repertoire.

    1980’s - The Arts Council chose it over the Royal Court to receive funding
    Late 1990’s Redevelopment makes the Empire the biggest theatre outside London – further phases of building work ongoing [not without controversy as it absorbed the neighbouring public house, a pub having been on that site since at least the 18th century].

    1866 - Star Music Hall, Williamson Square
    1896 - Star Theatre of Varieties
    1899 - Star Theatre
    1911 - Liverpool Repertory Theatre

    1917 - Playhouse Theatre

    Concerts, operas, ballets, comedies and music on the original repertoire. Later focused on repertory theatre, becoming one of the most prestigious provincial repertory theatres in the country well into the 1980’s
    Home to London Old Vic Theatre during Second World War.

    After a period of renewed success (and refurbishment) in the 1990’s under the guidance of local lad Bill Kenwright, financial problems saw the Playhouse’s closure in 1998.

    It has since reopened – refurbished once more - in partnership with the Everyman Theatre on Hope Street.

    The Playhouse remains today as Merseyside’s sole surviving theatre from the Victorian era. [The modern extension, which some feel sits ill at ease with the original building, was nevertheless felt to be architecturally worthy of being listed, and preserved in the recent refurbishment!]

    1867 - The Prince Patrick Hall, Camden Street
    Later renamed Wellington Hall and then the Gaiety Theatre
    Now Commercial building

    1869 - The original Rotunda Music Hall and Theatre, Stanley Road
    Music, singing, plays, pantomimes and melodramas presented.
    Rebuilt in 1876 after a fire.

    Destroyed in WW2.

    1876 - Circus

    Charles Hengler, from a Copenhagen circus family, opened a circus at the junction of Everton Road and West Derby Road. 4,000 spectator arena. Closed in 1901, later converted into the Royal Hippodrome Theatre of Varieties, later becoming a cinema, then a bingo hall.

    1888 - Shakespeare Theatre, Fraser Street Presented plays, varieties and annual pantomimes.

    1963 - Dance Hall
    1976 - Destroyed by fire, was to have become a comedy/ cabaret venue under the guidance of impressario/ DJ Pete Price

    1913 - Crane Hall and Theatre, Hanover Street
    1969 Became the Neptune Theatre Built above Crane’s Music Store, originally as piano rehearsal/ demonstration rooms – hence the unusual location.

    Hosts professional and amateur dramatic groups and dance schools. Annual pantomimes and children’s shows throughout the year as well as a venue for a successful “comedy club” of cabaret performances by national and international artistes. Still continues shows with well-attended audiences.

    The Crane Hall opened in 1915.
    The building was designed by W Aubrey Thomas - the architect of the Royal Liver Building.


    1964 - Everyman Theatre, Hope Street

    Originally opened as a cinema 1961-63, on the site of a former Methodist meeting hall [the nationally renowned Everyman Bistro occupies the basement i.e. the crypt/ mortuary!]. In 1964 the theatre aimed to offer adult play-goers the chance to see dramas performed by a young, experienced company as well as matinees for children.

    1977 - The new Everyman Theatre appealing to young students wanting alternative repertoire and foreign films.

    Variety continues today. Everyman Youth Theatre project exists training young people with an interest in theatrical arts. Another Liverpool theatre with a history of financial problems in the 80’s and 90’s, the Bistro took over the running of the theatre above it!

    The Everyman is now the partner of the Liverpool Playhouse.

    The Everyman Theatre was originally built in the 1830s as a chapel.
    It was converted into a cinema in 1915.
    The current building isn't "new" - only the facade is new.


    1980- Unity Theatre, Hope Place.

    Sited in a converted synagogue and the home of more radical theatre groups for some years prior to becoming the Unity Theatre.
    Funded by Arts Council and Local Authority, offers a mixed programme of professional and local groups – dance, drama, mime, new writings and ethnic arts, as well as a youth project and workshops for children.

    source unknown
    Last edited by PhilipG; 03-27-2007 at 11:21 AM.

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    Phil. I'm glad you corrected the Adelphi, Christian Street errors and updated it with what we know was there. Gerard's mum had the Pontack pub next door throughout the late 60s, all of the 70s and into the 80s.

    The new Adelphi was built at Rose Hill/Rose Place and it was that one that was bombed and the site is now grassed over apart from a bit that was taken up in the late 1960s with the Bishop Goss school assembly and dinner hall.

    The original circus gave rise to circus street opposite which was demolished to make way for Gerard Gardens tenements in the early 1930s.
    I posted up the site of the old Adelphi on the cinemas thread a while back.

    Kev. A great list.
    www.inacityliving.piczo.com/

    Updated weekly with old and new pics.

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    Does anyone know whats happening with The Neptune? I have heard it is opening up in September 2007! I am involved with a drama group and we are looking for a theatre to stage a play in Liverpool 2008! But so far we are hitting brick walls!!!

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    PhilipG
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    Quote Originally Posted by verdi View Post
    Does anyone know whats happening with The Neptune? I have heard it is opening up in September 2007! I am involved with a drama group and we are looking for a theatre to stage a play in Liverpool 2008! But so far we are hitting brick walls!!!
    The Neptune is owned by Liverpool City Council, so they should know.

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    Default musical theatre in Liverpool

    Hi Kev
    You seem to have loads of info on the pre war music theatre in Liverpool
    My grandfather sang principal baritone with the D'loy Carte Opera, the Savoy, and the John Ridding Opera group.
    Would you be able to give me any info of occasions when any of these groups came to liverpool

    My Grand father's stage name was michael kemble and my grandmother sang under the stage name of Christina May he was from Glasgow but came to Liverpool approx 1898 and met my grand mother.
    any help on trying to get any info would be great.
    thanks
    Lynne

  9. #9
    chippie
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    Cool theatre

    I do believe one of my relatives used to tread the boards in Liverpool, his stage name was Trevalyn Brookes. Did a Burlington Bert routine. Does any aging member or theatre enthuseast know of him.

  10. #10
    PhilipG
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    Default Olympia and Royal Court.

    Interior photos are very difficult to come by.
    Here's a link to some stunning photos, also loads of other cinemas and theatres.
    Click on "All sizes" for the large view.
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/1249410...n/photostream/

  11. #11
    Senior Member marky's Avatar
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    Liverpool Empire:
    Did anything happen on 23rd August 1923? There are a series of initials and this date inscribed into the white stone-work. Also 1924 gets a mention.
    The only thing I can think of, is deaths during construction.
    These inscriptions are hard to spot, but can be seen on the Lord Nelson Street side.

  12. #12
    DaisyChains
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    Quote Originally Posted by marky View Post
    Liverpool Empire:
    Did anything happen on 23rd August 1923? There are a series of initials and this date inscribed into the white stone-work. Also 1924 gets a mention.
    The only thing I can think of, is deaths during construction.
    These inscriptions are hard to spot, but can be seen on the Lord Nelson Street side.
    I have never noticed that Marky.
    Do you have a pic?

  13. #13
    PhilipG
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    Quote Originally Posted by marky View Post
    Liverpool Empire:
    Did anything happen on 23rd August 1923? There are a series of initials and this date inscribed into the white stone-work. Also 1924 gets a mention.
    The only thing I can think of, is deaths during construction.
    These inscriptions are hard to spot, but can be seen on the Lord Nelson Street side.
    The new theatre opened in 1925, if that helps.
    The Echo or Post for 23/24 August 1923 would probably give the answer.

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    I found 7 inscriptions showing 23rd August 1923, and 1 that shows 11th June 1924.


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    Quote Originally Posted by verdi View Post
    Does anyone know whats happening with The Neptune? I have heard it is opening up in September 2007! I am involved with a drama group and we are looking for a theatre to stage a play in Liverpool 2008! But so far we are hitting brick walls!!!
    The Neptune would be an ideal place - I heard there was talk that it was being taken over and turned into a bar - haven't we got enough bars in the city centre? It should stay as a theatre.
    It is Accomplished

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    Arts Centre repeats Easter panto revival
    Feb 4 2008
    by Phil Key, Liverpool Daily Post

    THE Easter pantomime became a tradition at Liverpool’s Neptune Theatre, now sadly closed. But it is a tradition that is being taken up by the Southport Arts Centre, thanks to Liverpool choreographer Lee Kelly.

    Kelly had worked on some of those Neptune shows and last year decided to try out Aladdin at the arts centre. It went down a treat.

    This year he will be staging Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs Easter, and with a pretty big cast.

    Rehearsals yesterday involved 32 youngsters, six dancing girls, two dancing males, and 10 principals.

    “There will be only 16 youngsters on stage at any time but we have two teams of them,” Kelly explains.

    “I am really pleased to have got some star talent in the show, too.

    “Alison Crawford, who is playing Snow White, was in the television show Grease is the Word and James Edwards from the group Eton Road will play Prince Charming.”

    Sylvie Gatrill will be the Wicked Queen.

    “Michael Chapman played his first dame role for me last year and he was superb. So he is back as Dame Val.”

    Kelly, 27, appeared in his first pantomime at the age of 10 opposite Mr T in Aladdin at the Liverpool Empire. Since then he has danced, choreographed, appeared in a Royal Variety Show and was a member of the boy band Young at Heart.

    But he has now created his own production company LHK Productions (the “H” is a tribute to his sister Hayley, killed in a road accident) and plans to stage pantomimes around the country.

    He is very much a fan of the genre and has written the script for Snow White.

    “It’s the traditional story with slapstick and some of my own ideas,” he says.

    SNOW WHITE and the Seven Dwarfs will go on stage at the Southport Arts Centre between March 19-22.

    Source: Liverpool Daily Post

  17. #17
    PhilipG
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    It's rather ironic that the only theatre Liverpool City Council owns (the Neptune) is closed in Capital of Culture year.
    If it can't be reopened in this year with all the events that are going to happen, will it ever reopen?
    Its name comes from Neptune as depicted in Liverpool's coat of arms.
    The theatre was designed by none other than W Aubrey Thomas (Royal Liver Building, etc) for Crane's to showcase their pianos.

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