Theatre vision is set to come to life

Polo Piatti in Opus Theatre. Picture by Peter Mould SUS-170305-104929001
Polo Piatti in Opus Theatre. Picture by Peter Mould SUS-170305-104929001

An ambitious plan to transform a town centre church into a 700-seat theatre is set to be realised.

The Opus Theatre will officially open at a private launch event this weekend after months of hard work.

The theatre will be housed in His Place Community Church, in Robertson Street, and hopes to offer high quality music in the form of concerts and recitals as well as opera soirees, theatre plays, dance performances, art films, acoustic acts, literary and poetry events, lectures and exhibitions.

The man behind the vision, director Polo Piatti said: “The transformation from church to theatre venue has gone well, with some unexpected problems but we’ve solved most difficulties by now.

“Everyone is happy and keen to start.

“Our arrangement with the building’s owners is that it will be used as a church only on Sundays and for two religious services.

“For the rest of the week, the building will be fully dedicated and controlled by the Opus Theatre.

“We have received two very important donations already: a top of the range nine foot concert grand piano, donated by a local person that prefers to remain anonymous, which is being finished by Phoenix in Bayreuth, Germany as we speak. It is a new model that has been baptised the ‘Phoenix Opus’ because of us.

“The other donation is the wonderful professional theatre lighting system, donated by Dan Sanders from the Troxy Theatre in Limehouse, London, who also donated the complete installation of the equipment.

“We are looking very much forward to the opening and invited more than 20 of the best artists we know from Hastings, London and beyond, who are keen to celebrate with us the birth of this beautiful new theatre the best way they can – by performing.

“All we need now is the support of the town. Please come and experience the Opus!”

The first event taking place at the Opus will be a theatre adaptation of the famous book ‘The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists’ by Robert Tressell on August 26.

Plans for the transformation were first unveiled in April 2017. The downstairs space of the building, including a community area and café, will remain the same and the church will continue as usual.

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