The construction noise emanating from Southam Hall is very familiar to NAC employees now that we have entered the fourth month of the NAC renovations. Crews wasted no time in dismantling our historic venue. The first thing to go was the plush red seats. The NAC will donate more than 1,300 seats to the Studio Theatre in Perth, Ontario, Ottawa's Woodroffe High School, and the Astor Theatre in Liverpool, Nova Scotia - the province's oldest performing arts venue. The renovation of Southam Hall will continue over the summer.
For Woodroffe High School the seats are arriving just in time. They had been considering a fundraising drive to replace their auditorium seats. They were badly worn and many no longer worked.
“It's a bit of an eyesore to be honest with you." said Principal Bill Arden. "You'll see splits in the cushions... there will be seats that don't fold up. So this is timely and as I say it's going to really rejuvenate the auditorium." Woodroffe High School will receive 720 seats.
The Astor Theatre is the oldest performing arts venue in Nova Scotia. In 2002 the Astor Theatre celebrated its 100th anniversary, and is now undergoing renovations. The NAC will donate 450 seats, completely replacing the Astor’s original seats in the orchestra and balcony.
“As Nova Scotia’s oldest performing arts venue, these NAC seats will be going to a worthy home, and a very appreciative community,” said Michael Boudreau, Chair of the Astor Theatre’s Board of Directors.
Perth’s Studio Theatre, which is receiving 200 seats, opened its doors in 1994. Its 197 seats came from a movie theatre in Arnprior that was being renovated.
“Our community theatre is always strapped for funds.” said theatre President Penny Silberhorn. “Our patrons are going to love it!”