ISSUED ON BEHALF OF TEES MUSIC ALLIANCE
Teesside music charity, Tees Music Alliance (TMA), could soon begin work on expanding and improving its venue, The Georgian Theatre in Stockton-on-Tees, as part of a major redevelopment being undertaken in partnership with Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council.
The independent music promoters, celebrating 30 years of making music in 2016, have planned an exciting programme of works which would see the venue increase its audience capacity and opening hours – creating a fantastic new facility for live music lovers.
TMA, which has managed and promoted events at the venue since 1993, is being given the opportunity to expand into adjacent council owned premises – formerly The Courtyard Hotel – to provide much needed bar and toilet space; along with daytime bar and café space; all crucial to attracting big named artists to Stockton - and securing the 18th century listed building’s future as a music venue.
Tees Music Alliance Director, Paul Burns, says: “Although not very rock and roll, having the correct amount of toilets is one of the factors determining the capacity of a music venue; and ours are currently limiting the number of people we can admit to events. In turn, this means that some of the artists we’d like to bring to Stockton-on-Tees are just beyond our reach because of the current venue capacity - which we hope to increase to around 300 people.
“Anyone who has attended one of our sell out shows will also have their own story to tell about trying to get served at our tiny bar; so adding more serving space and operating during the daytime will really make a difference – and will go a long way to generating much needed income to keep this lovely old building running for many years to come.
“The development is a really exciting one and we’ll be able to offer all of the facilities that a great music venue needs to offer; alongside some really exciting additions to our programme.
“We’re immensely grateful to our landlord, Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council for helping us to find the resources to carry out these works. The Georgian Theatre has served the area well over 20 happy years, so it’s going to be lovely to see the old place getting a much needed makeover.”
If granted planning permission, the redevelopment of the ground and first floors of the Courtyard Hotel is expected to start in the spring of 2016. Anyone interested in finding out more about the redevelopment proposals are invited to a drop-in session at The Georgian Theatre between 3pm and 7pm on Monday 23 November.
Leader of Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council, Councillor Bob Cook, said: “The Georgian Theatre is a popular venue which plays an important part in Stockton’s music and culture scene so I would really like to encourage anyone with an interest to go along to the drop-in session to find out more.
“Both ARC and the Georgian Theatre already provide high quality events and an expansion of the Georgian Theatre would further complement this.
“We would like to see Stockton Town Centre’s night time economy continue to develop and improvements like this will encourage even more people to visit the town on an evening and take advantage of all the leisure opportunities it has to offer.”
More details on the refurbishment and how TMA plan for artists, agents and promoters to benefit from them will be released over the coming weeks.