Wednesday, 23 May 2007


It's breathless and tense on site. The number of contractors surrounded by equipment and material is bewildering but slowly and surely the theatre is taking shape. And it is unarguably impressive. The picture at the head of this post shows the view from the back row of the grandstand. It is high and one can see to the north of the house. Vertigo sufferers ought not to sit in the back row. The mezzanine is now almost fully glazed and it looks to be an inviting space in which to spend some time. Once the groundworks and finishing are complete, the public areas will be very open and relaxed (we hope). As much cover as possible outside of the canopy line is being provided but obviously we hope we won't need it! The picnic area is running late so won't be fully ready by the test night so patrons will have to make do until the official opening when the floor would have been laid.

Recent rain has shown us where the problems of drainage lay. The canopy designers are currently installing the water collecting devices and drainage run-offs. Wind driven rain presents small issues at certain points (which we knew would be an issue given the height of the canopy, dictated by a desire to have steeper seats and retain the outdoor feel). Solutions for that are in the tweaking process anyway so we will be designing add on elements in time for opening night.

We are at the point where I have started having dreams about problems. Last night was about the number of bars. We have three of them, four at times, so I am confident it was my sleeping mind playing tricks on me.

Today, everyone on site will be given a galvanising shot in the arm (or slap in the face) when the Nabucco set arrives and the build begins. James has, in his own words, thrown everything but the kitchen sink at this one. Not quite a cast of thousands but that's how it will feel! Dressing room space at a premium, costume store full to bursting etc. But what a great way to kick off this season.

No comments: