A year ago to the day that the Everyman closed its doors? No. We can’t believe it either. It’s the start of a new chapter though, today – with the launch of Everyone for the Everyman, a new fundraising appeal to help speed on the all new Everyman.

The famous red sign will return, as will the theatre’s cauldron-like ‘wrap around’ design (with an added upper circle). But, we hope, the seats might be a touch comfier? We’ll see soon enough – the new theatre is set to open in Autumn 2013.

Builders are on site for the £28million project. The designs are approved (actually, that’s probably the other way around). Architects, Haworth Tompkins are officially excited: “A rebuilt Everyman will nurture the coming generation of artists and audiences, continue its long tradition of relaxed hospitality in Hope Street and seek a place in the forefront of Liverpool’s public architecture,” says their man with the plan, Steve Tompkins.

This week, Everyman Playhouse staff will tackle the three peaks (that’s King Lear, Hamlet and, oh no, it’s Snowdon, Scafell and Ben Nevis) to kickstart the fundraising. If you can help build a better theatre, check out their new microsite right here.

Meanwhile, across on the other side of Hope Street, The Phil has announced who it’s going to be working with to reshape their indomitable home: and we’re impressed.

Caruso St John architects will lead the long-awaited refurb – breathing new life into its Art Deco curves, while maintaining its stunning acoustics and general wow factor, made possible by an Arts Council grant (and a nice package from our Council too).

The plan is for CSJ to improve the experience for us, in the auditorium, and the musicians backstage (and if you’ve ever been backstage, you’ll know how pressing that particular issue is).

No blueprints yet, but CSJ’s previous work shows a practice with a deft touch. We wait excitedly to see what they’ll bring to the top of the town.

And this is just the beginning. The Phil has set an ambition for a total refurbishment project of up to £10million, and are too seeking additional funding, to complete the project by 2015. You can help them reach their targets right here.

And every penny you give will be doubled, thanks to an arrangement they’ve secured with the Trustees of the Kenneth Stern Trust who have offered, once again, to match, pound for pound, every contribution made to this year’s fundraising campaign up to a maximum of £20,000.

We could think of more fortuitous times to be rattling the fundraising bucket. We wish them both well. Liverpool’s cultural Renaissance wouldn’t be the miracle it is without them.

Everyman Theatre, Hope Street

RLPO, Hope Street

  • andyohare

    ‘scuse me, but how long has it been since the Phil last had a major refurb? Still seems pretty fresh to me (although the sculpture on the back wall hasn’t aged well). Let someone else have a go!