Bury St Edmunds' Theatre Royal and Apex could merge
A new trust could be formed to jointly manage a new £18.5m arts venue and a Georgian theatre in Suffolk.
St Edmundsbury Borough Council owns The Apex in Bury St Edmunds, which opened in 2010, while a separate trust runs the town's 19th Century Theatre Royal.
The council said the idea could make initial savings at both venues of up to £150,000 by sharing management, box office, catering and marketing.
The Theatre Royal trust said it would provide a cohesive cultural vision.
Lucy Middleton, a trustee for the Theatre Royal, said: "The primary driving force is what we can do culturally for the town together without stepping on each other's toes.
"That said we are, like any other business, trying to make us as streamlined as possible in a climate where public funding is tight.
"We're interested in exploring, with the Apex, what we could offer on a wider scale if the two of us got together, combined audiences and explored different types of work."
The Theatre Royal has annual subsidies of £335,000 from the Arts Council, Suffolk County Council and St Edmundsbury Borough Council.
The building had a £5.3m restoration in 2005 to return it to its original 1819 design.
St Edmundsbury council is spending about £700,000 on The Apex this year.
Sara Mildmay-White, a Conservative cabinet member on the council, said: "There is a great deal of work to be done, but this trust would position Bury St Edmunds at the forefront of cultural provision in this region."
The council and trust expect to review the proposal over the summer and make a decision in the autumn.