One of my favourite theatrical quotes comes from the Broadway musical The Producers. "You've heard of Theatre in the Round? You're looking at the man who invented Theatre in the Square! No-one gets a good seat! It's funny and that's because like on the best comedy it's based on truth. It's impossible to over state just how important the theatre configuration has on the audience experience. Well hold on to your hard hats Brisbane, there's a whole world of new possibilities heading your way. Today we joined a group for a sneak peek behind the scaffolding of the new-look Bille Brown Theatre at Queensland Theatre. What was a rehearsal space turned studio theatre is being reborn as a purpose-built theatre. It will be Brisbane's first corner theatre. For the uninitiated that's sort of like half a theatre in the round. It's a warm intimate theatre space where every audience member will be able to see the white of the performers' eyes. And as actors Bryan Probets and Hsiao-Ling Tang said there will be pay offs for performers too. The old studio was a cavernous space which required big movements. This is warmer, with far better acoustics and designed for more natural movement. At the walk-through with Arts Minister Leeanne Enoch and Queensland Theatre Artist Director Sam Strong, the possibilities are already exciting. I can't wait until October 6 when the first production hits that corner stage.
You can listen to Bryan Probets and Sam Strong discuss the new theatre here.