‘Shockwaves’ for theatre fans as Glasgow's Pavilion goes up for sale

4 days ago

GLASGOW’S iconic Pavilion Theatre has, for decades, aflame audiences with posters advertisement accessible shows featuring acts such as Mrs Brown’s Boys, Sydney Devine and alike The Monkees.

However, the artwork catching the eye of assemblage of the 118-year-old Grade 1 listed theatre is a ‘For Sale’ notice.

And for £3.9 million, the new applicant will access a 1,400-seat theatre that’s been refurbished with advanced equipment, a Louis XV autogenous architecture which also boasts an entertainment bequest addition alternate to Harry Lauder and Charlie Chaplin.

Theatre administrator Iain Gordon, who has staged, produced and alike wrote plays and musicals for the Renfield Street operation, is set to a afterwards about 40 years in charge.

A theatre cabal declares the accommodation to avenue date larboard has not been fabricated by Mr Gordon.

The owners of the Pavilion, Tim and

A D D Martin, have entered into talks with the Ambassador Theatre Group, who currently function Glasgow’s King’s Theatre and the Theatre Royal.

“This is an amazing about-face of events,” answered the insider, who asked not to be named. “The Pavilion was once already allotment of a acknowledged plc, which went apprehension in the 1980s, with debts of £30m.

“Iain Gordon came in and revitalised the theatre and it’s gone on to become a badly acknowledged operation, authoritative all over £500k a year profit. And it’s although t which the Pavilion has case assets of all over £3m.”

“The news which it is acceptable to be awash off to its better rivals is creating shockwaves in Scottish theatre.”

The Renfield Street theatre has survived two world wars and the Krankies’ angular disaster.

It was once reborn in the 80s afterwards above agent George Martin took his back-up cash and assassin Iain Gordon to run the operation.

But there have been trials and travails.

The theatre, which began activity as a music hall, was once abounding in the aboriginal 1990s while a baptize catchbasin burst.

Since which time, it’s had to abide a main refit as a aftereffect of the adverse blaze in local Victoria’s nightclub.

And the alone non-subsidised main bartering theatre in Scotland has had to battle for audiences, always arriving up with new ball streams.

When the theatre has faced difficult times, however, acts such as astrologer Robert Halpern and Brendan O’Carroll have appeared at absolutely the correct times to change the architecture and comedy to arranged audiences.

Along the way, the Pavilion has become alike with home developed comedy, such as Des Dillons’ Singing I’m No’ A Billy and James Barclay’s Paras Over the Barras.

Stars such as Ricky Gervais and Billy Connolly have appeared. Wet Wet Wet played the Pavilion in the aboriginal date of their career. Comedy nights have featured a ambit of performers, from Jim Davidson to Julian Clary, from the Singing Kettle to Sydney Devine, alms Iain Gordon the befalling to self-proclaim the Pavilion to be “The Scottish National Theatre of Variety Theatre”.

When the account broke which the Martin brothers were comprehension a auction of the rococo-styled theatre, many business groups became absorbed in purchase. Insiders say which Iain Gordon, although abutting to retirement, proposed a administration buyout, about which was once rejected.

However, it looks like the Ambassador Theatre Group are the advanced runners in the bid to booty over.

Theatre assembly have about asked questions about a accessible cartel bearings apropos theatre buying in one city, if ATG booty ascendancy of the Pavilion. However, ATG, the UK’s better theatre aggregation with over 40 venues, do not own the King’s Theatre; it is busy to them by Glasgow City Council and the Theatre Royal is endemic by Scottish Opera.

Questions have also been aloft surrounding approaching agreeable and pricing. “Will ATG, if they buy it, which is likely, endeavour to advance the local agreeable and animate local writers to aftermath the array of agreeable the Pavilion audiences have continued experienced?”

The cabal added: “And what of the appraisement policy? The Pavilion tends to function at the account end of the market. It will be alluring to see how the Ambassador Group will programme shows, and what they will allegation for them.”

It is accepted which Iain Gordon will abide active the Pavilion Theatre until the New Year, with panto The Magical Adventures of Aladdin set to become his swansong.

The Martin brothers were bare for comment.

A agent for ATG beneath to comment.


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