|The Market Theatre at Wyeside Arts Centre|
The Market Hall was last upgraded nearly 20 years ago: the current refurbishment has enhanced the audience’s experience with new seating arranged in one continuous tier, improved stage and house lighting and redevelopment, resulting in much more flexibility for different activities. The Arts Centre will be able to run a broader programme of workshops and community events, provide improved presentation possibilities for the actors, dancers and musicians who perform there, all with increased operating efficiency. The film-goer will also benefit from these improvements in terms of both seating comfort and acoustics and digital projection is planned for the Autumn.
The development project cost was £220,000 with an on-site contract period of three months culminating in the formal reopening of the Market Theatre on 25th April 2012.
The Market Theatre refurbishment was funded by grants from the Aggregate Levy Fund for Wales; the Foyle Foundation; the Garfield Weston Foundation; Powys County Council and the Friends of Wyeside.
Chair of the Board of Trustees, Barbara Stow said: ‘Our new theatre is a tribute to the generosity and hard work of many people. We extend heartfelt thanks to the Welsh Government, through the Aggregate Levy Fund, to the two Foundations, who believed in our vision, and to Powys County Council for their constant support and encouragement. Everyone who has worked on the project has pulled out all the stops to make it a success. We could not have asked for more care and commitment from designer Chris Baldwin, our builders, Jack Morgan and his colleagues, Jon Lees who kept an architect’s eye on site, the staff team at Wyeside, and others, too many to mention.
The opening celebrations for our refurbished theatre saw the local community take possession. Builth Young Farmers opened a weekend of concerts, three days before taking the national championships by storm, winning the awards for best show, and best male and female actors. Then two concerts on consecutive evenings showcased the work of local groups in dance, drama and music. I’m not qualified to say how far it was the design and furnishing of the space that produced the warmth, intimacy and engagement of the audience at the opening shows but it was a good feeling.’