SOCIALLY DISTANCED SELL OUT!!
Written by Jay Richards on 28/09/2020
The Palace Theatre in Paignton successfully hosted a socially distanced concert yesterday afternoon, in order to raise money for the Theatre, which has been closed for a considerable period of time due to the covid-19 pandemic. The event was organised by Talented local musician, piano teacher and music festival organiser, Chris Blurton, who first performed on the Paignton stage as a child thirty years ago. The Event saw children of all ages, as well as adults perform ‘live on stage’ playing the piano, guitar and singing. The event was sell out and a huge success!!
Jay Richards for Riviera FM spoke with Torbay MP Kevin Foster who said “It’s great to be here at the Palace Theatre, we’ve just seen a great show and its been really good to see such young talent on the stage and all doing it for a great cause, supporting a theatre that’s been at the heart of Paignton for 130 years!”
The Palace Theatre was originally an 800-seat hall for public use that opened in 1890. It was built by The Public Hall Company under managing director A. W. Axworthy. In 1919 an American-run film company, named Torquay and Paignton Photo-play Productions planned to buy out the Public Hall Company with the intention of building its film studios on the site. This did not go ahead however, and the hall was bought by (at the time) Paignton Council in 1920 after its attempt the year before which had fallen through because a price couldn’t be agreed.
By 1941 the theatre had been renamed as The Garrison Theatre when the Paignton Pantomime Company (formed 1935) presented Aladdin there in that December. It was renamed again in 1948 as the “Palace Avenue Theatre” and after refurbishment put on summer shows for several years.
The Palace Theatre took over from the Festival Theatre as the main theatre in Paignton in 1998, on the Festival Theatre’s conversion to a cinema and became the spectacular traditional theatre that we still see to this day.