MAC welcomes back audiences with new outdoor theatre

Article posted on: 29th July 2021

The origins of the outdoor theatre at Midlands Art Centre (MAC) go back to the 1970s when a number of students camping in Cannon Hill Park took it upon themselves to build an outdoor venue.

Fast forward 50 years and its latter-built stage area was no longer fit for purpose.

Albeit at a later stage of project conception, Clancy Consulting was brought in to assist with a design study and review of the existing concrete pad foundations.

The stage structure had to be able to withstand wind loadings and upward forces, along with strong enough foundations to take the structure’s full load.

There is no doubt that the worldwide pandemic has had a far-ranging negative effect on the entertainment sector, but there are some positives to be found amongst the chaos of the last 18 months. The forced closure of the centre allowed MAC more time to focus on raising sufficient funds to complete the outdoor theatre. The project started in Autumn 2020 and was completed in May 2021.

Lockdowns have cast a new spotlight on outdoor spaces along with a need to be outside in the fresh air. It comes as no surprise to hear from Lizzie Moran, Head of Technical Resources at MAC, that outdoor theatre screenings and performances will go on well into the autumn.

Lizzie said, “The improvements to our Outdoor Theatre have enabled us to safely welcome back audiences during the pandemic, but also create a fit-for-purpose, large theatre space to use for years to come. Thanks to our generous funders, even more events have been made possible for the community to enjoy.”

Please visit the MAC website for event details and how you can see the scheme that Clancy was delighted to be a part of.

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