A renewed performance space has been created at Andover College for student and public hire. The intriguingly titled ‘1803 Theatre’ is named to commemorate the first theatre to open in Andover in, you guessed it, 1803!
Students celebrated the opening by giving a variety of performances. These included song, dance and drama for VIP invited guests, including Deputy Mayor Councillor Martin Hatley. Students then performed Mark Wheeller’s play ‘I love you Mum – promise I won’t die’.
The original 1803 theatre in Andover used to stand on Newbury Road before being demolished. To this day, it remains something of an enigma. Deputy Principal Martin Simmons said: “Today’s ‘1803 Theatre’ at the College aims to strengthen and support our strong links within the local community, as well as start conversations about the thespian history of our town. This new development is yet another great opportunity for us to extend our offer to local organisations and further integrate ourselves into the heart of Andover.”
As well as various in-house shows, the College are keen to make the 1803 Theatre facility available for local theatre groups and schools to enjoy at very competitive prices. The performance space is a fully rigged 100-seat studio theatre and home to Andover’s outstanding range of Performing Arts subjects which prepare students for university or the performing industry.
Dance student, Bethany from Salisbury commented on the quality of the facilities and teaching during her studies. She said: “To anyone thinking of doing a Performing Arts course at Andover College, I assure you it’s a time in your life you’ll never forget. My course came highly recommended and expanded my knowledge on dance practice and how I can build a promising future in the industry.”