01:00PM, Saturday 02 September 2017
The Theatre Royal Windsor is opening the latest act in its long-running history as major refurbishment works edge nearer to completion.
The Thames Street theatre closed its doors for two weeks in the summer for decorators to refresh and redecorate the auditorium and Circle Bar.
Audiences can see the fruits of their labour by glancing up at the ceiling, where the theatre’s golden decor has now been refinished.
Teams from Farrow and Ball, AC Beck and MH Interiors also helped deck the theatre out in a distinctive crimson colour, otherwise known as radicchio, to reflect the theatre’s regal heritage.
Theatre director Robert Miles’ relationship with the venue began in 1979 when he starred in a production of Babes in the Wood.
He told the Express that closing the theatre for a ‘dark period’ and seeing the auditorium covered in scaffolding had been a strange feeling.
He said: “Because we don’t get any funding from the council we try and fill as many days as possible so having two weeks off was very strange for us.
“Originally the decorating team said it was going to take three weeks.
“We gave them the challenge of doing it in two instead and they came up trumps.”
The fresh look celebrates 20 years since leading UK producer Bill Kenwright took over the management of the theatre.
His pedigree has allowed the theatre to attract high-profile shows, despite its ‘intimate’ capacity of just 633.
Deborah Gallagher, house manager at the theatre, said: “Really for 20 years the theatre has needed a refurbishment.
“What we wanted to do was make sure it was keeping with the Edwardian theme.
“I think we have an added responsibility because we are in Windsor, right next to Windsor Castle, so we are steeped in that heritage.”
Robert added: “Part of our brand is that we are the ‘royalest’ Theatre Royal in the country.
“The Queen is both our patron and our neighbour so we need to be setting really high standards.”
The theatre celebrated its refurbishment on Wednesday with an opening night performance of the West End show How the Other Half Loves.
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