This much-loved theatre has enjoyed a long and fascinating history, surviving fire and war to remain a cultural landmark in the heart of Portsmouth.
One of the very few remaining Phipps/Matcham theatres in the UK still in operation, the Grade II listed building has continually evolved to embrace changing cultural trends, accommodating the era of film, variety performance and even live wrestling in the early 1960s. Many colourful characters have walked the boards at the theatre including Ellen Terry, Sarah Bernhardt, Henry Irving and Twiggy, who launched her film career in Ken Russell’s critically acclaimed musical film, The Boy Friend, which was filmed at the theatre.
Since its recent restoration, the Victorian theatre has created two additional performance spaces, its StageHouse
and the Minghella Studio
, named after the Oscar-winning director who resided on the Isle of Wight. Between the three spaces, the theatre host a dynamic range of world-class professional drama, dance, music and comedy performances as well as community events and workshops.
This year the theatre will be launching its very own cultural festival, FLUX
, a celebration of dance and visual theatre with a range of performances over the year.