Chester’s new art centre renamed


Chester’s new £37 million arts centre and library is to be called Storyhouse.


Operator Chester Performs will also change its name to Storyhouse to reflect the building’s new identity.

The renaming comes after an extensive public consultation exercise with residents and stakeholder, including Cheshire West and Chester Council, Arts Council England, and principal sponsor MBNA.

Storyhouse, currently the largest regional arts project under construction, will be the first to combine the management of a major theatre and library under one organisation.   The new building, which has been has been carved from an 1936 Odeon cinema will include a new social and café complex and a 100 seat boutique cinema.  The theatre space will switch twice a year between an 800 seat proscenium space and 500 seat thrust “festival” stage, along with a 150 seat studio.  Storyhouse will stage home produced productions for 50% of the year.

Artistic director, Alex Clifton said, “We will be running a building like no other. It needs a unique name to reflect its unique offer. This is a place to discover, make and share great stories. It’s a place to bring inspiring ideas to life. Storyhouse brilliantly captures and communicates the creative spirit of our integrated library, theatre and cinema”.

He added,” Our public spaces form the backbone of the project and will change every day. They are the heart of our building and will be the busiest, most creative area of our work.  We are on a mission to democratise culture, making open spaces which communities will programme and manage themselves.  Theirs are the stories we want to tell”




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