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The Park Theatre, 16 Woodside Terrace, Charing Cross, Glasgow

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The Park Theatre, Glasgow Entrance Hall - Courtesy Graeme Smith.

Above - The Park Theatre, Glasgow Entrance Hall - Courtesy Graeme Smith.

 

The Park Theatre, situated within one of the many opulent townhouses in the terraces and crescents of the Park area of Glasgow, opened in 1941 under the leadership of John Stewart, a director in his family`s prosperous commercial colleges, Skerry`s – headquartered in Glasgow – with colleges throughout Britain and Ireland, and which also pioneered Skerry`s Correspondence School.

The interior of the Park Theatre, Glasgow - Courtesy Graeme Smith.

Above - The interior of the Park Theatre, Glasgow - Courtesy Graeme Smith.

Skerry`s College at 13 Bath Street, Glasgow - Courtesy Graeme Smith.Despite the vagaries of war, his interest in theatre and in the Curtain Theatre which had closed in 1939, emboldened him to open and direct a new club theatre at 16 Woodside Terrace, next to the building that had housed the Curtain Theatre.

Right - Skerry`s College at 13 Bath Street, Glasgow - Courtesy Graeme Smith.

The Park Theatre seated 120 people and staged new and established plays, musical recitals, and poetry readings. Park Theatre Productions between 1941 and 1945 were:

Victoria Regina, Time And The Conways, The Witch, The Playboy Of The Western World An Enemy Of The People, The Rivals, I Have Been Here Before, Candida, The Women Have Their Way, Thunder Rock, Twelfth Night, The Man Of The World, The Words Upon The Window Pane, The Tinker's Wedding, The Constant Wife, Jonah 3, Rope, Amphitryon 38, We Who Are Left, Private Lives, Arms And The Man, The Empress Maud, The Silver Cord, Pygmalion, Tarravore, Night Must Fall, The Man With A Load Of Mischief, The Queen's Husband, A Man Of Parts, Goodness How Sad, A Hundred Years Old, and On Approval.

Kenneth Ireland joined as general manager in 1946 and productions between then and 1948 were:


A Programme for 'The Little Foxes' by Lillian Hellman at the Park Theatre in 1946 - Courtesy Robert Pool. - Click to see the whole programme.The Little Foxes (programme shown right), Quality Street, Heartbreak House, This Was A Woman, Double Redoubled, The Magic Rowan, There's Always Juliet, Macbeth, Invitation To A Voyage, Mary Rose, The Doctor's Dilemma, Cayenne, Doctor Faustus, A Phoenix Too The final programme for the Park Theatre in December 1948 'Ambrose Apple John's Adventure' by Walter Hackett - Courtesy Robert Pool. - Click to see the whole programme.Frequent, Salome, See How They Run, The Hasty Heart, The Pastoral Symphony, Legend Is Born, The Man With A Load Of Mischief, The Great God Brown, Fit For Heroes, Brief Glory, Full House, and Ambrose Apple John's Adventure which was the last production at the Park Theatre, from December 22nd 1948 to the 15th of January 1949.

Right - A Programme for 'The Little Foxes' by Lillian Hellman at the Park Theatre in 1946 - Courtesy Robert Pool. - Click to see the whole programme.

Left - The final programme for the Park Theatre in December 1948 'Ambrose Apple John's Adventure' by Walter Hackett - Courtesy Robert Pool. - Click to see the whole programme.

When peace had returned John Stewart wished to have a larger theatre in the city but theatre building was not a civic priority, given the national scarcities of materials.

The Pitlochry Tented Theatre - Courtesy Graeme SmithInstead he decided in 1949 to choose a tranquil site in Pitlochry in Perthshire, for which he had to start in 1951 with a tented theatre (shown right).

Right - The Pitlochry Tented Theatre - Courtesy Graeme Smith.

In time a permanent building was constructed in 1981 and is the Pitlochry Festival Theatre standing on the banks of the River Tummel (shown below).

 

A Postcard showing the Pitlochry Festival Theatre in 1981 - Courtesy Graeme Smith.

Above - A Postcard showing the Pitlochry Festival Theatre in 1981 - Courtesy Graeme Smith.

This article on the Park Theatre was written for this site by Graeme Smith in 2014.

If you have any more information or images for this Theatre that you are willing to share please Contact me.

 

You may find the following pages from this site of interest: