Culture in Birmingham – Theatre

With over 13 theatres just in the city centre alone, it is clear that Birmingham is a force to be reckoned with when it comes to drama!

The Birmingham Hippodrome is the city’s flagship theatre and is widely recognised as one of the greatest in the nation. This stunning theatre seats 2000 people and regularly sells more seats than any other British theatre each year, and that’s including the West End! Their programme is full of musicals and plays, including touring companies and local productions, as well as performances by the Welsh National Opera and the Birmingham Royal Ballet.

Just along from The Birmingham Hippodrome is the New Alexandra Theatre, an exquisite Edwardian auditorium that is a favourite venue for touring companies. Staging the usual mix of plays and musicals, the New Alexandra Theatre also stage comedy shows and concerts – a great venue if you like a bit of variety!

The Birmingham Repertory Theatre (The REP for short) aims to bring creative entertainment to the public, producing and performing entirely new plays every year! Working closely with directors, actors and producers to ensure that the very best is brought to the stage, and this can be seen in their colourful past – the REP first premiered ‘East is East’ in 1996, which later became a multi-BAFTA award winning film in 1999 and is considered a British modern-classic by many!

For something a bit more low-key, The Blue Orange Theatre is an independent fringe theatre with its own production company who perform new works written by budding playwrights as well as theatre favourites. Their intimate theatre space creates an ambience that is perfect for a bit of quality drama. Alongside their selection of plays, The Blue Orange Theatre promotes other elements of the Arts as well; poetry-readings, live music gigs, comedy nights and more all feature in their programme.

The Old Joint Stock Theatre packs no lesser punch than its larger counterparts. This is the epitome of intimate theatre as the venue only seats 105 in its studio. Although small, The Old Joint Stock is home to the Birmingham Cabaret Festival as well as the award-winning OJS Theatre Company. What’s more, this venue also incorporates a fully-stocked pub and restaurant, plus it’s locally known as one of the best places in Birmingham’s centre to pick up a pie!

If you think theatre isn’t your sort of thing, let RoguePlay show you otherwise! As one of Birmingham’s most physically demanding theatre companies, RoguePlay incorporates the fun of the circus and acrobatics into their storytelling, creating an innovative theatre experience for its audiences. Many of their performances take place outside, using the streets of Birmingham as its stage so be sure to check out their programme – or if you fancy, take part in one of their circus workshops!
The drama doesn’t stop there! Birmingham is home to many other theatres, including The Old Rep Theatre, The Crescent, The Drum, Stan’s Café and that’s just naming a few…

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