Our future’s looking bright, exciting and sustainable
A plan for a successful, sustainable future
Since our beginnings in a tent in 1951, our Theatre has evolved continuously. Our continuing aim is to reflect the changing needs of our communities, and, in doing so, build on our founder John Stewart’s legacy.
Our VISION Project, is the next exciting step towards this ambitious goal. As well as setting out ways in which we plan to develop our indoor and outdoor spaces, it outlines our commitment to our audience and wider communities – both local and further afield. By increasing our outreach activities, working to lessen our carbon footprint, and exploring ways to strengthen our financial sustainability, we’re taking steps that will carry us towards a sustainable and rewarding future.
The global pandemic, while hugely challenging, gave us a valuable window in which to advance plans which were in the early stages of development. We set to work and, in October 2020, Pitlochry Festival Theatre submitted a planning application to Perth & Kinross Council for the creation of a second performance space and an extension to the Theatre’s front of house area.
Central to the plan was a second performance space, an accessible 172-seat studio built within the existing building, which has now been completed and is now open with its first production in August 2022. A flexible space, this additional venue will showcase new writing and touring productions from across Scotland and UK, whilst also broadening the Theatre’s already-strong artistic programme. It’s all part of our drive to expand both existing and new audiences, to support and create jobs, and to engage with a wider range of artists from all over Scotland and the UK.
When the plans were announced, Colin Liddell, Chair of Pitlochry Festival Theatre said:
“Whilst Covid-19 is a major challenge for everyone involved in theatre, it provides an unexpected opportunity for us to accelerate our redevelopment plans so that the Theatre becomes a beacon of hope and provides a symbolic vision of what culture can provide in a post-Covid world.
This work is funded by Dunard Fund and Gannochy Trust, whose charitable support I am delighted to acknowledge. Their generous funding to us forms part of our Theatre’s match-funding of the £10m capital funding committed to the Theatre through the Tay Cities Deal.”
Kris Bryce, Executive Director at Pitlochry Festival Theatre said:
“I’m delighted that we’ve reached this milestone. Our capital project has been developed over a number of years as part of the Tay Cities Deal. By investing in this work, at a time when theatres have been forced to close, we’re sending a clear message that we believe in the future of our Theatre, of the region, and the jobs which we support.”
Elizabeth Newman, Artistic Director of Pitlochry Festival Theatre added:
“We are excited to share our plans to grow the Theatre. At such a critical time for theatres all over the UK, we know it’s important to make positive plans in Pitlochry and to focus our attention on the future and towards a time where we can serve more audiences and artists from across Scotland.
We pride ourselves on being a theatre that grows three things – plays, plants and people. This project will help us continue this mission and to be a true theatre for a lifetime, sharing Pitlochry with the world and the world with Pitlochry.”
The new spaces were designed by Susie Bridges Architects, specialists in refurbishing theatres, whose previous projects have included Victoria Palace Theatre, Theatre Royal, Drury Lane and Cast, Doncaster.