Theatre Truro Uncategorised


Looking for something to do this October Half Term? ??

From children’s workshops to shows for the whole family, there’s something for all ages happening in and around Hall for Cornwall…

For the little ones…

This October Half Term, you can find us hiding in your local Cornwall Council Library! Join us for some Peter Pan themed fun in one of these locations from MON 23 – FRI 27 OCT!?

? MON 23 OCT – Falmouth Library (10am – 12pm) and Camborne Library (1.30pm – 3.30pm)

? TUE 24 OCT – Wadebridge Library (10am – 12pm) and St Columb Library (1.30pm – 3.30pm)

? WED 25 OCT – Torpoint Library (10am – 12pm) and Bodmin Library (1.30pm – 3.30pm)

? THU 26 OCT – Newquay Library (10am – 12pm) and Hayle Library (1.30pm – 3.30pm)

? FRI 27 OCT – St Agnes Library (10am – 12pm) and Penzance Library (1.30pm – 3.30pm)

And don’t forget Toddler Time! ??

Join us for a Halloween themed Toddler Time in our Green Room Cafe! ? There will be arts, crafts, games, stories and even some spooky dancing!

? TUE 24 OCT / 10AM

Find out more here.

Fans of McFly and Monsters Will Love…

Tom Fletcher’s much-loved book series comes to life in There’s a Monster In Your Show!


This high-energy 50-minute adventure is packed full of beautiful, colourful puppets and live instruments! You can expect plenty of playful fun for your littlest ones as their favourite characters come to life in a show that is packed with interactive moments to enjoy together. Complete with brand-new original music composed by Tom Fletcher himself, this is the perfect introduction to live theatre.

? MON 23 | 1PM / 3.30PM

? TUE 24 | 11AM / 2PM

Come and feel the fire!

The Waterboys take the to Cornwall Playhouse stage for one evening of live music!

Sadly, this show is now completely sold out, but we hope everyone who managed to get tickets has a memorable time!

? WED 25 OCT | 7.30PM

Things are hotting up in the kitchen…

James Martin is turning up the heat with his brand new live show!

The proud Yorkshire-born chef is planning to make the new tour even hotter with fun, laughter, food and even some live music in this exclusive gastronomic experience.

? THU 26 OCT | 7.30PM

Sha La La, Ha Ha!

Join legendary pioneers of UK Rhythm and Blues, The Manfreds as they celebrate a remarkable 60 years in the business.

Celebrate the 60th Anniversary of the band that defined a decade with their unique sound and hits.

? FRI 27 OCT | 7.30PM

Finally, close half-term with a bang…

Britain’s most-successful dance group DIVERSITY are set to raise the roof with their explosive new production SUPERNOVA!

Expect a thrilling night out with Ashley and Jordan Banjo and the whole team. This production is almost completely sold out so grab your tickets while you can!

? SAT 28 OCT | 2.30pm / 7.45pm

? SUN 29 OCT | 2.30pm / 7.45pm

Other things happening at Hall for Cornwall this October…

Our Green Room Café will be open as usual throughout the October Half Term, serving up delicious sandwiches, hot drinks and sweet treats.

Relax in a cosy atmosphere, surrounded by tropical plants and the warm scent of coffee in the air. Dig into a wholesome pie from Peck and Strong followed by a tasty treat from BB’s Gluten Free Bakery (pictured) and many more…

And if you’re feeling adventurous, why not take a wander through our Ope Way and explore the auditorium?

If you’re spending an evening in Truro, pop into our Playhouse Bar for cocktails and chilled vibes. Open most evenings and around showtimes, this is the perfect place to unwind in the bustling city.

However you choose to spend your October Half Term in Cornwall, we hope to see you here at Hall for Cornwall.

Events Live Performance Music Truro

Our returning friends, the hugely popular ELO Experience…

So synonymous with their late 1970s hit singles have the mighty Electric Light Orchestra become that its surprising to recall that they’d emerged out of Birmingham right at the start of that decade, born from the ashes of psychedelic popsters The Move. Principal songwriter and frontman Jeff Lynne’s catchy tunes, coupled with his ‘big hair and sunglasses’ look, came to be the instantly recognisable sound and face of the band, but the early line-up saw Lynne and legendary ‘ELO’ drummer Bev Bevan joined by their fellow Move-departee Roy Wood, a larger-than-life character who’d soon, well, move on again and become forever famous as the glitter-and-sparkles leader of  ‘See My Baby Jive’ glam rockers Wizzard. 


Our returning friends, the hugely popular ELO Experience, delve into a particularly rich back catalogue. ELO themselves might be particularly remembered for the breathless effervescence of the classic Mr Blue Sky, with original fans having a wry grin at its 7” blue vinyl single, with its charming run-out exhortation to ‘please turn me over’, a message lost on the musical streaming generation but a helpful reminder to flip the disc and hear the likely more experimental B-side back in the day. But there’s a whole host of genius songs to celebrate. Livin’ Thing, Telephone Line, Turn To Stone, Rockaria, Don’t Bring Me Down… they still sound fabulous to this day! 

We always feel that’s what these evenings in the Cornwall Playhouse do as part of keeping popular music alive in a live environment, as it were, a continuous rejoicing in the cross-generational appeal of the great singles and hit-packed LPs of yore. And in this instance, we’re celebrating the music of a band that itself cherished the sound of those who came before them. It’s said that the initial idea of ELO, that fusion of cello, violin and woodwind with contemporary rock, came from Roy Wood, but it was Lynne who ran with it for much of the band’s history, melding strings and horns on the stage with a love for The Beatles and The Beach Boys worn on his sleeve. Indeed, it became almost a cliché to ponder whether ELO were the band that The Beatles might have become had they continued into the 70s, while the surf rock influence of Brian Wilson and Van Dyke Parks’ seminal ‘Heroes and Villains’ is evident on ELO’s classic Out of The Blue album track Across The Border.  

 In these blogs, we love to remind long-time music fans of gigs they might have seen way back when, here in the days of Truro City Hall or elsewhere across Cornwall’s venues, and indeed some digging around finds ELO in our own much-loved building on 19 July 1973 as part of a mini-tour jaunt around the west country – let us know if you remember that one! And if your concert-going memory stretches further back, tell us about The Move (with Roy Wood and Bev Bevan, but pre-Jeff Lynne) playing Redruth’s Flamingo Club in August ’67… we’d be thrilled to hear about those shows! 

Eventually Lynne and ELO eschewed that famous symphonic sound for the straighter soft rock of the sci-fi concept album Time, a different beast from their A New World Record, Out of the Blue, and Discovery peak, but a new direction, at the time, that has also worn-well over the years. Let’s join the ELO Experience in keeping these wonderful tunes reverberating around our auditorium, for the music ages like a fine wine and never grows old. 

Written by Ian Abrahams

Theatre Toddler Tuesday Truro


Are you searching for something fun to do with your little ones this summer and beyond?

There’s something special about visiting the theatre with the whole family – and it’s not just the sweet treats, magical merchandise, and the well stocked bar (for the adults!) It’s a whole experience. The excitement of choosing a show, the counting down of the days until it arrives, the moment before the curtain rises to reveal a magical set…

Whether you’re 3, 93, or anywhere in between, you’re invited to dress up and join us for an adventure into a magical world where anything can happen. Our stage is a spellbinding place filled with special effects, music, and famous faces from the worlds of film, TV and even books.

So whether you’re delighted by Dragons, fond of fairies, or you dig a dog called Duggee, there’s something for everyone this year at Hall for Cornwall. Set in the heart of Truro, a stone’s throw from Falmouth, Newquay and St Austell, we’re the hub of entertainment in Cornwall.

Come and see what’s happening in our theatre in 2023…

Toddler Time!

Every Tuesday at 10am in our Green Room Cafe

Join us for stories, crafts, music, games and more with our friendly and energetic Get Creative Team! Each week has its own theme, and is often related to the productions on our stage, so you can experience the magic of the theatre with our experienced creative practitioners!

Recommended for ages 2-6 years, this workshop is £4 per child, and it’s free for adults and younger siblings.

Find out more about this fun workshop in Truro here.

Crafternoons ?

Every Wednesday through August 4.30pm-6.30pm in our Green Room Cafe

Get stuck into some serious free-flow Peter Pan-themed crafting fun!

Perfect for creators ages 4-9 and we’ve even thrown in yummy afternoon snacks for an adventure to Neverland. Tickets are £10 with packed tea or £4 without.

Led by our creative band of brilliant buccaneers, get ready for paper, pencils, gems, glue and – of course – a sprinkling of pixie dust (by which we mean glitter!).

Dragons and Mythical Beasts ?

TUE 29 – THU 31 AUG

Calling all brave heroes! Enter into a magical world of myths and legends From the creators of the international smash hit Dinosaur World Live…

Dragons and Mythical Beasts is packed full of magical creatures and magnificent monsters, like the colossal Stone Troll, the not so friendly Tooth Fairy and even a unicorn! Don’t miss this spell-binding adventure, live on stage in Truro, Cornwall for one week only.

Tin Man ?


Joss Arnott Dance presents a magical new retelling of a classic story, seen through the rusty eyes of the Tin Man and their journey to finding their heart and happiness. This magical show for all the family is the perfect way to cap off the summer in Cornwall. You can even meet the cast and get some magical photos, so you can take a piece of the show home with you!

The Ocean at the End of the Lane ?

TUE 19 – SAT 23 SEP

If you’re searching for something for teenagers and yound adults, don’t miss this thrilling production. From the imagination of Neil Gaiman, best-selling author of Coraline, Good Omens and The Sandman (now a major Netflix series), comes the National Theatre’s major new stage adaptation of The Ocean at the End of the Lane.

This five-star spectacular from the producers of War Horse and The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time is a thrilling adventure of fantasy, myth and friendship, taking audiences on an epic journey to a childhood once forgotten and the darkness that lurks at the very edge of it. It’s giving us serious Stranger Things vibes!

There’s a Monster in Your Show!?

MON 32 – TUE 24 OCT

Tom Fletcher’s interactive adventures for big imaginations are leaping from page to stage, as the beloved Who’s in Your Book? series makes its debut as a brand-new musical show in the Cornwall Playhouse!

With an invitation to his friends, Dragon, Alien and Unicorn to join him, you can expect comedy and chaos as they help to create a magical show, learning about the joy of books and friendship along the way. A high-energy 50-minute adventure featuring lively original music, this show is the perfect introduction to live theatre.

Peter Pan ?

By J.M. Barrie

MON 04 – SUN 31 DEC

Looking for a way to make Christmas in Cornwall extra special?

Following the fizzing festive fun of 2022’s Treasure Island, we’re getting ready to sprinkle fairy dust through Cornwall with Peter Pan! Journey with us to naughty Neverland where dangerous pirates and a certain crocodile are lurking…

Come fly with us! Stuffed full of pesky pirates, freewheeling fun and a gaggle of lost boys and girls, take flight with Peter, Wendy and of course Tinker Bell too!

“Peter Pan” is presented by arrangement with Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity and Concord Theatricals Ltd. On behalf of Samuel French Ltd.

And if this wasn’t enough, check out our What’s On page for our full programme of events. There’s musicals, dramas, comedy, films, talk shows and live bands to knock your socks off.

Hall for Cornwall is the place to be in 2023 – and beyond!

Photos by Hugh Hastings

Christmas Theatre Truro


Arrgghh ye’ ready to see what the critics think?

Our brand new Christmas show Treasure Island opened it’s doors on Thursday 1st December, and since then it’s been filling seats with children, parents and grandparents all eager to shout ‘he’s behind you!’

From the second that audiences filed in from the cold, jittering with anticipation, they were immersed in the world of Treasure Island. On one side, our Green Room Cafè had transformed into a treasure-filled tropical island with parrots, palms and plenty of booty…while our Playhouse Bar had turned into a pirate ship!

Once they’d filled up on festive hot chocolates, spicy nachos and warming Christmassy cocktails, audiences entered the auditorium, ready for the adventure of a lifetime…

So, what did they think? See for yourself!

From newspapers and critics to you, our lovely audience members, here’s some of our favourite reviews from the first week of opening…

‘The whole production was a masterpiece, and it was ‘ansome!’

The Packet Newspapers

‘M-arrrrr-vellous… a brilliantly Cornish production.’

Cornwall 365

‘It’ll make you proud to live in Cornwall.’

Cornwall Live

‘Entertained the small kids and the big kids, and on being asked what was the best bit; all of it, came the reply.’

Audience Member, Facebook

‘So joyful!’

Audience Member, Instagram

‘We couldn’t stop laughing the whole way through, absolutely wacky and bonkers in the best way possible and perfect for all the family.’

_stephbythesea_ on Instagram

‘Everyone put their heart and soul into it. Kernow King as Long John Silver was amazing!’

Audience Member, Facebook

 ‘A festive, feel-good evening, definitely a lasting memory made❤️’

gingerfamilylife on Instagram

Our cast and crew have been beaming all week at this overwhelmingly positive response. This is why we love what we do, because it brings a smile to so many faces when they need it most.

So put on your Captain’s hat and join in the fun this Christmas!

Grab your tickets and get ready to set sail for a swashbuckling show…


Architecture Creative Heritage History Theatre Truro


Ah, the ‘in-the-know’ pleasure of an ope – the tiny opening between tightly-packed buildings often found in Cornish fishing and mining communities. And earlier this month we cut the ribbon on the Cornwall Playhouse’s own spin on this tradition: The Ope Way is our name for the area at the back of the stalls (ground floor) in our new theatre, which connects the Playhouse Bar (and our Boscawen Street entrance) with the Quay and the Green Room Café. Is it a shortcut between two Truro shopping streets? Or a cut-through to the box office? Or simply an excuse to have a nose at what’s happening in Cornwall Playhouse on any given day? Try it yourself and tell us!


The pioneering idea of the Ope Way was a key part of our vision for the ‘new’ building, it forms part of our new Heritage Trail, and we’re thrilled to share it with you. Of course The Ope Way won’t always be open – some theatre secrets are best kept until showtime!

Architecture City Hall Heritage Lottery Fund Heritage Stories Historic Building History Town Hall Truro

1926: Spiralling Costs and a Controversial Reopening

1926: Spiralling Costs and a Controversial Reopening

Written by James Westfield, University of Exeter
Work on the remodelling of the Hall commenced in June 1925 after the tender was given to ‘Messrs. Colenso, Ltd., of Cambourne, of £8,737’, considerably above the £5,000 initially estimated in 1922. Subsequent to this, Truro City Council applied for a loan of an additional £4,000, thus allowing £10,000 for the project overall. The City Hall (as it was then renamed to) reopened with a ball in October 1926, although it was widely criticised at the time for ending at midnight, as the council would not permit longer opening hours for the new Hall.
The actual end cost announced to the council meeting on 14th April 1926 was £12,000, which caused an outcry from the public (represented in this poem from the West Briton newspaper in May 1923 just from the initial costing of £5,000 for the hall, let alone the £12,000 final cost!) and there were also complaints that renting costs for the hall were too high at £33 10s per week and also that no arrangements had yet been made for films or performances. Eventually, in June 1926, the council agreed to temporarily let the hall for use as a cinema in order to pay back ‘at least the interest’ on the loan, only to then cancel these plans in August 1926 as the councillors couldn’t come to an agreement over the letting costs!
The first ball, to celebrate the reopening of City Hall was held in October 1926, although not without controversy. The Police Super-Intendent Osbourne called it ‘an absolute disgrace’ that it ended at midnight and that the council would not extend the licence of the Hall until 2 am. There were also complaints in early 1927 that it seemed impossible to book the hall, although the council down-played this by announcing that the Woman’s Institute had successfully booked it and that they did not understand what the public were complaining about.
And so, the City Hall and it’s first theatre were created, and this paved the way for the modern theatre we know today as the Hall for Cornwall. It also helped Truro enter a new, post-industrial era and prepared it for the societal changes that would occur in the latter-half of the twentieth-century. Furthermore, it cemented the Hall’s place as a significant monument for the Truronian population, that would lead to them campaigning to save it from destructions in the 1990s.
Celebration Community Club Festival Heritage Stories History Town Hall Truro

Truro Peace Day Celebrations, 1919

Truro Peace Day Celebrations, 1919

By Daisy Roberts

Peace Day celebrations took place in Truro on the 18th and 19th of July, 1919, marking the formal end to the First World War. Although the conflict on the Western Front had ceased when the armistice was reached on 11th of November, 1918, a formal peace was not agreed until the signing of the Treaty of Versailles on 28th of June, 1919. This official end to the war was celebrated throughout the United Kingdom. As the image shows, King George V declared that a religious thanksgiving be held throughout the British Isles and Empire on 6th of July. In Truro, a service was held in the cathedral. This was followed up by the Peace Day celebrations on the 18th and 19th. London led the celebrations. A large victory parade made its way through the city and the first cenotaph was unveiled in Whitehall. (This temporary structure was so well received that the following year it was replaced with a permanent structure).

In Truro, celebrations spanning the 18th and 19th of July, were attended by the general public, local school children and former soldiers who had served in the war. These celebrations intended to remember the lost, commemorate their sacrifices and celebrate peace. Festivities included speeches, music, food, fancy dress, sports competition, a bonfire and carnival. Events on the 18th were primarily directed at local school children. The postcard shows their attendance at a religious service, delivered from a platform erected outside what is now the Hall for Cornwall building on Boscawen Street. This was followed by sports competition in Boscawen Park in the afternoon.

On the evening of the 18th, at least 500 ex-servicemen were entertained with dinner and a smoking (men-only) concert. Both were held in what is now the Hall for Cornwall building. The Saturday celebrations, on the 19th, began with bell-ringing from both Kenwyn Church and Truro Cathedral. Stood outside of the City Hall on Boscawen Street, the Mayor then read the proclamation of peace. After which, the festivities got into full swing, the parade and adult’s sports competitions began, followed by music in the evening.

These celebrations were enjoyed by all members of the Truro community. Truro City Hall building provided the perfect centre for these festivities, both public and private. A tradition Hall for Cornwall aims to continue on the same site today and in the future.

Images courtesy of the Cornwall Records Office, with thanks to Courtney Library of the Royal Institution of Cornwall for access to local newspaper archives.

City Hall Community Heritage Stories History Music Theatre Truro

‘A Cobra and Basket’: Truro Amateur Operatic and Dramatic Society and City Hall

‘A Cobra and Basket’: Truro Amateur Operatic and Dramatic Society and City Hall

By Kate Neale

In 1961, the Secretary of the Truro Amateur Operatic and Dramatic Society received a letter from London confirming an order of a cobra and basket to be delivered to City Hall. A curious order! But apparently, not an unusual one in the day-to-day running of an ambitious local theatre group.

First formed in 1912, the Society performed in different venues in Truro before settling at City Hall for many of their shows. Originally performing Gilbert and Sullivan operas such as The Pirates of Penzance and Ruddigore, after 1929 the group mainly opted to perform more modern musicals such as Oklahoma!, My Fair Lady and South Pacific.

In 1961 the Society performed Kismet as its fiftieth anniversary show. Kismet originally premiered in 1953 in Los Angeles, before being performed in San Francisco and then at the Stoll Theatre in London’s West End. The story is set in an imagined historic Baghdad, and follows the adventures of a wily poet, and the love affairs of his daughter. The Society’s production at City Hall included a cast of over 40 main performers, additional dancers, and a 24 piece orchestra.

Archive material held at the Cornwall Record Office shows what an undertaking putting on a show such as Kismet could be. The Society arranged for band parts from theatre company Samuel French, scenery and props to be delivered to Truro train station, and of course the cobra and basket from a stage production company in London!

The fiftieth jubilee was an opportunity to showcase the Society, and the Mayor and Mayoress of Truro were invited to attend the performance.  It was also an apt moment for the Society to reflect on its own history; a large souvenir programme, printed by Truro firm Netherton and Worth, included snippets and stories of performances from past years. Former and life members of the society were warmly welcomed back to celebrate the Society’s ongoing work.

City Hall and Hall for Cornwall has been an important venue for Truro Amateur Operatic and Dramatic Society over the course of its history. We hope that in its new form, our theatre will continue to be a hub for local creativity for years to come!