Stratford Theatre May Be Saved

News   Stratford Theatre May Be Saved

Several Sunday papers have suggested that with Adrian Noble's decision to leave the Royal Shakespeare Company next March, the plans that he said (in his press statement) he had successfully set in motion, may now be in doubt.

The highest profile change that Noble has pressed for has been the demolition of the 1930's Shakespeare Memorial Theatre at Stratford.

Sir Donald Sinden has been at the front of calls to save the building, where many great Shakespearean performances have been staged.

The theatre's future may not be quite as secure as some would now like to think, however, and the rumors that it is likely to be saved could be seen as spin by an anti-Noble section of the RSC: Parliament's Culture committee have already strongly backed Noble's plan to get rid of the old building, on that grounds that it was hopelessly outdated and unsuited to the twenty-first century future of a major national company.

Another very familiar theatrical landmark — Sadler's Wells in Islington, a famous but famously uncomfortable theatre — has been pulled down and replaced with something less "historic" but vastly more attractive, congenial to act in and enjoyable to sit in. Nobody would now argue that it was a shame the old building wasn't preserved.

—By Paul Webb Theatrenow