Thursday, 22 September 2011

Brixton To Get A New Theatre: Brixton Empire

My beloved Brixton has many great things going for it - concert venues large (O2 Academy) and small (Electric Brixton), a great cinema (Ritzy), clubs (Plan B, Mass, Brixton Clubhouse Terrace & Bar and Jamm to name just a few); and more bars, cafe's and restaurants than I have the time to list. 

Throw in the wonderful markets, Brockwell Park and the Lido and it really has everything. Well nearly everything; what its lacked is a great theatre space. Until now that is.

St Matthews Church
I am very excited that Brixton is now to get its very own theatre space. Opening in October, Brixton Empire will be situated in the vast St Matthews Church building - which also hosts clubs Mass and Babalou as well as being the venue for the brilliant Samba classes run by Paraiso.

Brixton Empire, will have a capacity of between 150 to 200 people, with plans for a cafe and bar and even an extension into a bigger studio (with a 400 capacity) if all goes well. 

Brixton Empire is the brainchild of Daljinder Singh, who directs the opening play 'when the chickens came home to roost', a play about Malcolm X, set in the 1960's and written by Laurence Holder. It featured Denzel Washington as Malcolm X long before he played the role in the Spike Lee film of the same name. 

The play is a taste of what is to come from the Brixton Empire it seems. Speaking to 'The Stage' magazine, Singh said; "We're not going to be programming very traditional work - for instance period pieces, Chekhov or Shakespeare. There are fantastic companies out there that do that work superbly, so we're looking at other kinds of work that have that unique edge to it that symbolised the spirit of Brixton. We chose this play because we thought it was a fantastic play and despite being set in the Sixties it very much reverberates into the present - there are many parallels with the issues that are coming up today."

The theatre is currently looking for front of house volunteers, who will benefit from getting to see plays for free. If you are interested in volunteering check out the theatre's Facebook page.

'When the chickens came home to roost' is on from October 5 to November 4. Details can be found here. Tickets can be bought here. Get out and support this new local theatre!

Brixton Empire
St Matthews, Brixton Hill, SW2 1JF

I'll be reviewing the the theatre space and the play here on Mr Musing soon.
What do you think?


Boojai said...

AND about TIME!!!

YIIIIIpppppeeeeeee- I love Brixton!


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Mr Musing said...

Boojai (I love the variations on the booj theme BTW) - I know what you mean. Not long now hopefully until I am back there again!

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