About Us > Stage Appeal 2009 - 2012
And the best supporting role went to...YOU!
With the generous help of our audience, regional businesses and many Trust and Foundations we successfully hit our £1m Stage Appeal target, and work on the replacement of our 30-year old stage was completed in the autumn of 2012.
Whilst we were closed over 500 light-fittings were upgraded to LED; the orchestra pit was refurbished; a new cloakroom and box office was created in a newly remodelled entrance foyer; and digital signage and new heat-efficient front doors were also installed.
“We are delighted to have reached our £1m target. The extensive backstage and foyer improvements will benefit everyone as they make the theatre more efficient, ensuring we can continue to be a stage for the best in the world.”
John Crabtree, Chairman Birmingham Hippodrome Theatre Trust
“Thousands of Hippodrome patrons have donated generously, and the region’s business community has demonstrated consistent support. We are hugely grateful to all the donors who helped us with this essential project.”
Mark Smith, PwC Midlands Regional Chairman and
Chair of Birmingham Hippodrome Theatre Development Trust
Click below to watch early stages of work to replace the stage. Time Lapse camera work by Martin Pickard.
To view a list of those generous individuals, businesses and trusts who have already supported our Stage Appeal, click here.
Since the last refurbishment of the Hippodrome stage floor in the early 1980s, more than 650 different productions have been presented here with regular heavy usage of the stage, six days a week, over 50 weeks a year ... and this has taken its toll. We needed to replace our stage as it is was showing serious signs of bowing, splitting, unevenness and general wear and tear.
How much did it cost?
The total cost was around £1,137,000 and fundraising was a fundamental part of securing the money to do the work. As an independent, not-for-profit registered charity (No. 510842), without any public subsidy, we needed as much help as possible in raising funds for this important appeal and we were delighted by the response we got.
Why was this work not done ten years ago?
The stage itself did not form part of our award-winning redevelopment back in 1999-2001. If we had been able to find the time and money to complete this project back then, we certainly would have done. However, with this second phase of work carried out in 2012 through the Stage Appeal we have ensured that our stage remains fit to present the best arts and entertainment in the world.
Why did the stage need so much work?
Every production we present here has its own unique stage and set requirements. This requires constant modifications to the space such as inputting and removal of screws, movement of heavy equipment and the attachment of overlaid temporary surfaces - all of which continually weaken and add to the damage.
It is easy to underestimate the large numbers of crew and technical support required backstage for large shows:
• BRB’s Nutcracker relies on over 40 crew members per performance
• The Phantom of the Opera set arrived here in 26 lorries
• Hairspray had 26 staff on the ‘get-in’ alone
• Backstage technical staff calls exceed 4,000 each year
• The stage will often carry loads in excess of 4 tons per show
• Over 10,000 artists and musicians perform here at the Hippodrome every year
In order to grow our position as a leading UK venue, it is imperitive that we own a stage that meets this high level of use with maximum efficiency.
Fundraising for the Stage Appeal has drawn to a close but our efforts are now focussed on extending the valuable work in education and access the Hippodrome undertakes as part of our charitable responsibilities within the city. For further information CLICK HERE.
If you are interested in supporting Birmingham Hippodrome please get in touch with us on 0844 338 5040 or make a donation below. Thank you.
For more information about how to support Birmingham Hippodrome contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0844 338 5040
Birmingham Hippodrome Theatre Trust Ltd, Registered Charity No. 510842