Put simply, there is nothing like the egg in Bath.
There may be pretenders, but the egg is a unique facility for children who love all things theatrical.
It's a purpose-built theatre, attached physically to the rear of the Theatre Royal, and is part of the company which now boasts a main house, studio theatre and children's theatre.
The launch was heralded by a sound installation, and the eruption of a host of children in white overalls and hard hats into the dark of a drizzly October evening.
Inside, the first performance on the stage, by Fevered Sleep, was somewhat cheesy in the circumstances, but nonetheless highly entertaining, showing two adults discovering the lost pleasures of childhood in dozens of white shoe boxes.
But what of the egg?
It is a child's delight. Designed by children for children, it will host shows by children and for children, in a packed year-round programme.
The seats are long, soft and couch-like and not for the long-legged, since they are built to child specifications.
The auditorium is cosy, seats more than 100 people and is on two levels. It's modern but not garish, with lots of bright red drapery and red corrugated plastic walls.
|Inside the egg theatre|
Most innovative of all, it has a soundproof room where parents can take noisy children, but still watch a performance without disturbing anyone.
Celebrating children's theatre
At the top of the building is a huge, ply-clad rehearsal room which will be used largely by the Theatre Royal's youth theatre.
This is a space which drama schools would give their eye teeth for, boasting a panoramic view of the neighbouring roof tops - think minimalist loft apartment and you get an idea of what it has to offer.
The egg is something of a triumph and cynics should suspend their disbelief. This is a space which, director Kate Cross points out, should celebrate children's theatre, since they deserve top-quality theatre as much as grown-ups do.
It may be for children but it is not childish. The 12-year-old with me was asked her reaction and came up simply with one word: "Funky!"
To find out more about the egg theatre, click on this link: