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You are in: Leicester > Entertainment > Theatre and Arts > Features > Countdown to Curve

Curve exterior in March 2008 - photo by Richard Brine

Countdown to Curve

It's just one month until the curtains lift on Curve's first show, Simply Cinderella, but the public were invited in for one weekend (01-02 November) to take a look around. Read on to find out more about the show-stopping building...

Curve has been years in the planning and has cost £61 million to build.

It'll form the heart of Leicester's new cultural quarter and, along with Highcross, will make Leicester a real destination city.

"You could have elephants coming in from the street, parading across the stage, straight into the foyer and out as soon as possible."

Paul Kerryson, Curve's Artistic Director

Listen: Interview with Paul Kerryson

BBC Leicester's Martin Ballard was given a guided tour around the iconic building by Curve's Artistic Director, Paul Kerryson...

Paul says the building was designed to be inviting:

"The front of the building and all the glass says 'come in', basically, and the way that the audience or the performers come in - you're almost in the same place.

"All of the area is like one enormous stage so you're in the foyer but if it's desirable you can see what's going on on the stage as you're having a cup of tea in the morning."

He says it'll also provide unique opportunities for performances:

"You could have elephants coming in from the street, parading across the stage, straight into the foyer and out as soon as possible.

"It's perfect for dance companies, it's perfect for drama, but it's perfect for just innovative thoughts really, different kinds of companies could come here from all over the world and make themselves at home."

Curve inside - photo by Richard Brine

Curve - March 08 (photo: Richard Brine)

Listen: Interview with Rafael Vinoly

BBC Leicester's Monica Winfield spoke to the visionary architect behind Curve, Rafael Vinoly...

Rafael says that he's very pleased with the finished building:

"I feel great, I think it's a wonderful contribution to this very long-standing programme that Leicester has always had for rehabilitation of the city through culture, which I think is a really wonderful and intelligent approach.

Listen: Countdown to Curve

BBC Leicester's Pete Warzynski spoke to the leader of Leicester City Council, the Chief Executive of Phoenix Arts and others about the opening of Leicester's latest landmark...

Curve - Ross Willmott outside Leicester's Curve

The leader of Leicester City Council, Ross Wilmott, has supported the construction of Curve from the beginning.

He says it's been a bumpy journey to get to this stage, but it's something for the city to be really proud of.

The Chief Executive of Phoenix Arts, Andy Whitman, agrees. He doesn't feel it'll be just taking over from where Phoenix Arts left off though:

"There's a huge difference between a small auditorium like Phoenix and the two huge and amazingly technically advanced auditoria that Curve's going to have.

"So Curve will be able to do much more ambitious things than ever Phoenix has been able to do in its 45 year life."

Liz Brain is a theatre critic in Leicester. She says the real test of Curve's success won't be for a few months yet:

"The first season really isn't the important one. I think in the first season a lot of people will go just to see what it's like.

"It's what they come up with next that's going to be important, and what they do to get people back in the building."

Curve will open for it's first performance of 'Simply Cinderella' on 04 December 2008.

last updated: 03/11/2008 at 12:21
created: 31/10/2008

You are in: Leicester > Entertainment > Theatre and Arts > Features > Countdown to Curve



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