The name for the new cultural centre scheduled to open later this year will be “Storyhouse”
Chester Performs, who have produced the hugely successful theatre in the park, the literature festival and the Wayword festival have also rebranded to the same name. The Storyhouse name was selected following a consultation with Manchester brand agency True North.
Situated inside the historic and long neglected Odeon, the 37 million pound cultural centre will include a library, theatre, small cinema and cafe/bars. “It is a place for exploration and discovery; where new talent is nurtured and community creativity encouraged.” proclaims the Storyhouse website. Storyhouse is the largest art’s project currently under construction outside of London and hopes are high that it will serve as a hub for the city’s thriving cultural scene. Speaking last year , artistic director Alex Clifton said that the only “limits are our imagination” and deflected criticism about the 100 seat cinema, saying that it could have multiple showings daily. The theatre itself will have 800 seats but can shift into a 500 seat “festival stage” for more intimate productions. A second studio theatre will have 150 seats. The centre will stage home produced productions for half of the year and touring productions for the rest of the year.
The reveal of the name has attracted a mixed response. Chief executive of Storyhouse Andrew Bentley said the team was “over the moon” with their new identity. “It’s a straightforward expression of the journey we have been on as a company, and where, together, we are going in this amazing new building”. Alex Clifton said that the name needed to be unique to reflect the varied cultural offer and its combined use. “This is a place to discover, make and share great stories. Storyhouse brilliantly captures and communicates the creative spirit of our integrated library, theatre and cinema.”
Details about the programme are expected to follow later this year with the opening date not yet confirmed. Exciting times for Chester, as the opening date draws nearer.
“This house is your house. What will you do with it?”