Live performance to make a sparkling return to the stage at Newcastle's Civic Theatre

07 Nov 2021

The Civic Theatre is putting on the glitz this week as it shakes off the shackles of lockdown to welcome audiences back into the iconic Newcastle venue.

The 92-year-old theatre will host its first live performance in three months with the long-awaited opening on Wednesday of fabulous Australian musical Priscilla, Queen of the Desert by renowned local theatre company Metropolitan Players.

Civic Theatre Manager Leonie Wallace said the timing was perfect for a return to the theatre, with further easing of restrictions from today allowing even more people to experience the joy of live performance.

"COVID-19 brought our vibrant industry to a halt, with the restrictions and shut-downs a blow for performing artists and production companies such as the Metropolitan Players, who were relying on this show to secure their future beyond this production," Ms Wallace said.

"The staging of our first live performance on Wednesday could not have been better timed, with the new Public Health Order that will be in effect allowing us to resume with 100 per cent capacity for fully vaccinated audience members.

"Reopening the theatre will provide a much-needed boost to the city’s night-time economy in the wake of COVID-19 restrictions, while also allowing us to support our local performing arts community.

"It also paves the way for a fantastic launch of our new subscription season on December 1."

While audience numbers will be able to return to pre-COVID levels, theatregoers will still be subject to COVID safe measures to ensure the health and wellbeing of staff, customers and performers. This will include the mandatory wearing of masks inside Civic Theatre for anyone aged 12 years or older, which will apply until the end of December 2021.

Tickets for all upcoming shows, including the seven performances of Priscilla, are now on sale, giving Novocastrians their first chance to experience the Civic Theatre’s new ticket counter, now located in the heart of the historic building.

Face-to-face ticket sales have moved from the Hunter Street box office into a bespoke new space adjacent to the Civic Theatre Café, which was designed by EJE Architects to compliment the unique mix of historical and contemporary elements within the Theatre.

Online ticket sales for all shows at the Civic Theatre, the Playhouse and City Hall Concert Hall are also still available through the Civic Theatre website.