[First look] Rick Mather Architects has been appointed to design the £13.5 million redevelopment of the Lyric Theatre in Hammersmith, west London
The practice has a long-standing history of working with the theatre, having overseen the Lyric’s first extension, which opened in 2005 and created a new frontage and rehearsal space.
Designed in collaboration with artist David Batchelor and Richard Wentworth, the new extension project aims to become ‘the UK’s first teaching theatre for the Performing Arts’, allowing up to 200 young people a day to take part in formal education, apprenticeship programmes and extra curricular activities.
These facilities will link directly with the existing theatre and will include theatre, dance, TV and recording studios, a 60 seat cinema, a scenic workshop and meeting rooms.
Work is expected to start on site in Summer 2011 on the redevelopment which has the backing of the Arts Council England, Hammersmith & Fulham Council, the Department of Education and the Mayor of London through the London Development Agency.
Built in 1895, The Lyric Theatre was designed by the English theatrical architect Frank Matcham. In 1966 the theatre was closed, to be dismounted and re-built piece by piece on its current site nearby the original location. The new theatre reopened in 1979.