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National Youth Theatre reopens following major renovation
The National Youth Theatre has undergone a major renovation and extension increasing its visibility and accessibility from the street as well as doubling its capacity for professional studio space.
The charity moved to its current home on London’s Holloway Road in the 1980s but until now has never had a proper theatre space to show off its young members’ talent.
G&T provided Project Management, Cost Management and Principal Designer & CDM Consultancy services, assisting NYT from the initial feasibility studies and team assembly, through funding applications to the Mayor of London, submitting the planning application with Islington through to construction, by Neilcott.
Designed by architects DSDHA, works included the addition of a 250-seat Workshop Theatre to the building for the first time, enabling the NYT to welcome audiences from the local community, and beyond, to show off the young members’ talents. A new pavilion clad in green glazed bricks not only creates a welcoming entrance but also houses the reception, a members’ hub and space for community events.
The relocation of staff offices and structural alterations to the existing workshops on the ground floor have created new, naturally-lit, flexible theatre spaces for new productions alongside studios and workshops for commercial hire. The first and second floors house further studio space as well as offices, a green room and design and production facilities.
Accessibility has also been increased with level access, wide doorways and lifts, new gender-neutral loos and a Changing Places Toilet as well as an accessible main entrance and fully accessible spaces across five floors.
“It was a pleasure working with the Client and Design Team to deliver a project that will benefit its students and the local community so greatly. The building encapsulates the NYT’s aim of providing opportunity and the enhancements to the spaces provide a more fitting venue to empower young people. It was a truly proud moment to hand the building back to NYT and see how much it means to the trustees, staff and students.”
Senior Project Manager, G&T
Forthcoming phases of work will see a new basement archive space, digital recording suites and hot desks for early career creatives, along with improvements to the street outside
Project costs were covered by £2m from the Mayor of London’s Good Growth Fund, match-funded by the Kirby Laing Foundation.
The NYT of Great Britain is a world-leading youth arts organisation established in 1956 as the world’s first youth theatre. World-renowned alumni include Helen Mirren, Daniel Craig, Matt Smith, Catherine Tate and Chiwetel Ejiofor.