Old Rep Theatre – a step closer to new life

Cllr Ian Ward

Cllr Ian Ward

Following a rigorous two month tender process, Birmingham City Council has identified a company to breathe new life into the city's Old Rep Theatre.

A report on Monday 17 March asks cabinet to approve the sub-letting and operation of the Old Rep Theatre to Birmingham Ormiston Academy (BOA) for five years, with an option to extend until March 2024 when the current lease expires. The building is owned by The Vyse Trust so any transfer remains subject to Landlord's permission.

The Old Rep - the first theatre in England to be designed for repertory - has been home to the Birmingham Stage Company since 1992 and a long-standing venue for amateur theatre companies.

Councillor Ian Ward, deputy leader of Birmingham City Council, said: “I am delighted that Birmingham Ormiston Academy, which specialises in creative, digital and performing arts for 14 to 19 year olds,  has stepped up to the mark. 

“The Old Rep is an ideal place for young people to develop theatrical skills, whether as performers or behind the scenes.  We don't have the funding for proactive programming or marketing so the theatre has not been used to its potential.  I believe that Birmingham Ormiston Academy will breathe new life into this wonderful space and build on the work already being done there.”

If the report is approved, BOA's contract will be managed by the city council's culture commissioning service which looks after similar relationships with funded arts organisations, including the mac and Birmingham Museums Trust.

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For more media contact Debbie Harrison at Birmingham City Council on 0121 303 4476 / 078801 80385

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