When you think of a regional theatre far from the cultural hub of London, you could be forgiven for assuming it might be all about small-scale, local productions. And at first glance, the Hall for Cornwall doesn’t have the most modern guise – it’s a big, imposing building with original Victorian character and inside, there’s still an orchestra pit. One look at the listings for this venue, though, and you’ll see just how much high-quality, contemporary entertainment is going on here.
On the edge of the country it may be but the Hall for Cornwall gets some seriously big guns playing here. If it’s high-brow you’re after, this year you’ll find the Rambert Dance Company, the Moscow State Orchestra and a choice of opera starting with Tosca. Shakespeare always features at some point in the year (always performed by a solid, professional company) or for something more mainstream there are musicals, often touring the country having started in the West End.
Jimmy Carr and Sarah Millican headline the comedy on offer for 2013 and if you fancy a peek at some famous TV celebrities, there’s Brendan Cole from Strictly, Michaela Strachan from Springwatch and Nicholas Parsons from – well, all kinds of programmes.
There are burlesque performances for the grown-ups, fairy tale-style plays and adaptations of iconic children’s books for little ones, and drama and dance workshops for kids all through the year – a great way to wear them out on a rainy day.
Truro has plenty of good places for a quick bite before a show or a nightcap afterwards. Chantek serves south-east Asian dishes; as is often the case with this style of food service tends to be quick and efficient for those with limited time. It’s one of the busiest restaurants in Truro, testament to its quality. If you’ve got more time, Bustophers, just up the hill from the theatre, does beautifully sourced, cooked and presented dishes that are nicely indulgent and satisfying. Closer still is Indaba, seafood specialists, and just across the road is Mannings, bar of choice for a pre-theatre cocktail.
Check out what’s on at the Hall for Cornwall for your next holiday – it’ll make a real event of an evening out. Regional theatre, yes – provincial and amateur, absolutely not.
Hall for Cornwall
Back Quay, Truro, Cornwall, TR1 2LL, Tel. 01872 262466
15 New Bridge Street, Truro, Cornwall, TR1 2AA, Tel. 01872 225071
62 Lemon Street, Truro, Cornwall, TR1 2PN, Tel. 01872 279029
Lemon Street, Truro, Cornwall, TR1 2QB, Tel. 01872 247900