Royal Court Theatre, Liverpool
The site of the Royal Court Theatre has been at the heart of Liverpool culture for nearly 200 years. It was first opened in 1826 as Cooke's New Circus and renamed in 1831 as Cooke’s Amphitheatre of Arts, presenting a programme of opera, music, theatre and ballet. It was renamed the Royal Court Theatre in 1881 and was the number one touring venue in Liverpool for popular theatre until the 1970s.
Support from the Heritage Lottery Fund enabled the Royal Court Liverpool Trust to start the first substantial renovation work in the theatre for nearly 75 years. Work in phase one focused on the auditorium to make maximum impact on audiences who were desperate for new seats, better bar facilities and improved access.
Evertaut worked closely with The Royal Court Liverpool Trust and architects Allford Hall Monaghan Morris to create a seating scheme that would modernise and restore the Royal Court to not only improve audience comfort but to enhance the overall theatre experience.
The stalls area required a swivel chair to be fitted behind a table to enable the audience to enjoy a meal as well as watch the show. Evertaut fulfilled this requirement by re-working the theatre’s existing free standing chairs. The seat boards were re-polished to a high standard incorporating a new upholstered seat pad and these were then fitted to a swivel pedestal base unit.
The requirement for the Circle was to have 403 comfortable new seats that were still in keeping with the look and feel of a traditional theatre chair. Evertaut modified the Orion VIP seat to create a new theatre seat that fulfilled the client's criteria. The chairs were supplied with a polished outer back to give them a traditional theatre style and refinement.
Detailed seating plans were prepared and approved prior to the installation of the seats which included a bespoke two seater 'love seat' version along the back row.
The requirement for the balcony was to have 454 new seats which would offer a high level of comfort, designed to match the high back style of the original seating. As with the circle seating, Evertaut adapted the Orion VIP chair to meet the client's requirements.
The chairs were supplied with a polished high outer back to give it the traditional theatre style but also to comply with health and safety requirements. Due to the high steps in the balcony a high chair back was required for safety.
Once again, detailed seating plans were prepared and approved prior to the installation.
All of the seats were professionally installed on time and within the agreed budget and the newly refurbished theatre opened with a new play entitled Reds and Blues, written by Dave Kirby.
The theatre was extremely pleased with the new seating installation and provided Evertaut with a glowing feedback report stating they were totally satisfied with all aspects of our product and installation. A copy of this feedback form can be seen below.