|Hammersmith Apollo Unveils New Look and New Name|
Eventim Apollo reopens with tomorrow with gig by Selena Gomez
Hammersmith's most famous venue, the Apollo has unveiled a new look and new name as it reopens following a multi-million pound refurbishment.
The venue, now called the Eventim Apollo by of its owners, ticketing and live entertainment company CTS Eventim will open to the public tomorrow for a gig by Selena Gomez.
As we revealed in June, the venue in Queen Caroline Street has received a major facelift, including new lighting, seating and additional facilities for wheelchair users.
The owners say the building has been revamped by to recreate its iconic 1932 design with glorious new interiors and signage.
The renovation, which was overseen by Foster Wilson Architects includes fixtures and fittings to original designs, restoration of the ornate plasterwork and historically sensitive decoration to match the original paint scheme.
It has also revived the two marble staircases which were concealed beneath the extended stage and restored the original foyer floor mosaic panels, whilst in the circle the original windows have been revealed allowing natural light to once again flood the circle bar.
Outside there is new multi-coloured LED lighting on the façade.
The works also include newly constructed bars and new seats in the stalls, whilst the seats in the circle have been raised in height and re-upholstered improving legroom and comfort. The owners also say that by re-organising the stalls seating layout, the venue has been able to double the space available for wheelchair users.
The Hammersmith Apollo Theatre was building in 1932 as The Gaumont Palace Theatre. The original architect was Robert Cromie and the building is listed Grade II*. With a seating capacity of 3,500, it is one of London’s largest theatres.
The venue originally opened on 28 March 1932 as the Gaumont Palace cinema, designed in the Art Deco style by renowned theatre architect Robert Cromie (who was also responsible for the renovation of the Prince of Wales Theatre in Drury Lane in the 1920s). The building is one of the United Kingdom’s biggest and best-preserved Art Deco super cinemas.
The building still has its original 1932 Compton pipe organ, a rarity today, which was removed from the building in the 1990s only to be put back and fully restored in 2007. Organs were a popular feature of cinemas in the pre-war period and were used to entertain visitors during film intervals.
The venue was created as a collaboration between exhibitor Israel Davis and the Gaumont British Theatres chain and originally had 3,487 seats. The opening programme included Tom Walls' A Night Like This and Helen Twelvetrees in Bad Company.
Colin Chapple, Chief Operating Officer of AEG Live says: " As the new owners AEG and CTS Eventim recognised that London deserved more from one of its foremost venues. With a passion for delivering a high standard of comfort to the fan the changes we are making in seating, ventilation and the bar operations will ensure they will enjoy the best music and comedy talent in a wonderful venue capturing the original Art Deco heritage. "
September 6, 2013