The Scottish Mask & Puppet Centre is currently raising funds for the revitalisation and modernisation of the existing Centre building, to create an additional new theatre, museum, education room and study centre that will improve access, presentation and enjoyment of the arts and film for public benefit.
The Living Museum Of Masks & Puppets
The case for rendering the existing non-productive store areas into a producing space for new work with puppets, masks, mime, physical theatre, dance, film and television could not be stronger. The existing puppet theatre of 80 seats has been playing to full houses for 28 years with an average 87% audience attendance rate. As audience levels have increased demands on the space have rendered the existing space more and more cramped. Through the development of the Centre, we would be able to double our output with a further 107 seats and to create the conditions for sustainable growth and development as a destination venue. This will greatly improve the visitor experience and facilitate growing public demand for an increased range of activities.
The project will include a new studio theatre with retractable seating capable (107 retractable seats) of being used as a performance space (for marionettes, puppets, masks, mime, physical theatre and dance) or as a rehearsal studio or as a film and television recording unit.
Situated on the ground floor the theatre will be fronted by a public foyer and exhibition space with an adjacent scene bay, loading dock and dressing room. The first-floor mezzanine gives access to a new private archive area and double marionette bridge for performers and trainees. The largest space on this level is a new museum gallery and education room connected by both lift and staircase. The second floor connects to a new library, study and documentation centre again connected by lift platform and internal staircase/ fire escape. This will form a Living Museum of Masks and Puppets for the preservation and conservation of SMPC’s collection and heritage materials and will also be accessible from the Study Centre within the existing flat. The existing hands-on production and design workshops - woodcarving, mask-making, marionette repair and film and special effects - will continue to serve the training and education initiatives associated with all of the above.