Massive news on the theatre front for all Biggleswade culture vultures
and live on Freeview channel 276
What started out as a Facebook group called Biggleswade Massive has morphed into a go-getting bunch of entertainment professionals behind the Bigg Theatre – in what was the Pizza Express in the High Street.
Spokesperson Dom Shaw – a freelance director now working on the musical Pretty Woman in London’s Savoy Theatre – explains: “Biggleswade doesn’t have a theatre or cinema or any kind of cultural hub, in spite of having a wealth of talent and a huge hunger for anything of this nature.
"We wanted to change that. We did some surveys and were overwhelmed by the interest in a potential new facility.
"We really believe the whole community should have full access to the arts and benefit from the positive impact it can have on people’s lives.”
So they formed BAC – a community interest company with the aim of giving the town its first specific arts centre.
Dom says: “We’re creating a contemporary cafe/bar with wheelchair accessible toilets in the front if the building – that’s the main change.
"We’re also remodelling the old kitchen so it can be a green room/dressing room space for performing artists."
And he adds: “In addition, the space will be used for workshops, children’s theatre, art classes, youth drama classes and support groups.
"It’s a hireable area for the community to engage with the arts. And we’ve already been inundated with groups and individuals who want to use it.
"We’re in touch with lots of touring theatre companies and will also be putting on our own productions – hopefully including a family Christmas show.”
They’re planning a grand opening – complete with local dignitaries and other famous faces – at the end of summer.
It will feature cinema screenings, live comedy and live music.
Dom says in the past 10 years many arts and entertainment professionals have moved out of London to Biggleswade to enjoy the benefits of cheaper housing and good travel links to the capital.
They include lighting and events guru Tim Soden – who started Biggeswade Massive – and actor Anna Stolli.
> If you’d like to get involved email Tim.