Brighton Dome has announced details of a dedicated creative space for artists as part of the refurbished Grade I and II listed Corn Exchange and Studio Theatre.
The space has been made possible following a generous grant from The Roddick Foundation and will be called Anita’s Room, in memory of Dame Anita Roddick, the activist, entrepreneur and founder of The Body Shop.
As the major restoration of Brighton Dome’s historic buildings heads towards completion, Anita’s Room will be a space where local, national and international artists and organisations can research, experiment and create bold and courageous work.
The space will also offer opportunities for audiences to observe and learn first-hand about artistic practice.
Anita’s Room is fully equipped with a lighting grid, mixing desk and the latest 5G technology and can accommodate up to 40 people within its main space, office and kitchen areas.
Supporting works in progress, small scale performances and events, Anita’s Room will be offered free of charge to Brighton Dome associate artists, resident artists, visiting performing artists, community participation projects and creative learning activities.
Time slots will be allocated through a simple application process, with applications then reviewed and considered by a team of local artists and creative practitioners working alongside the programming team at Brighton Dome & Brighton Festival.
The Roddick Foundation is a family-run philanthropic organisation dedicated to the support of visionary organisations and individuals demonstrating exceptional creativity, entrepreneurial spirit, and courage.
Justine Roddick, Trustee of The Roddick Foundation, and daughter of Dame Anita Roddick says:
“Throughout history, especially through turbulent times like these, art provides a refuge and an escape from daily hardships.
"Art gives us hope, amplifies important messages, documents moments in time and brings us together.
"To imagine a world without art, theatre, books, music and film is unbearable which is why The Roddick Foundation is committed to supporting the arts and proud to support Anita’s Room at Brighton Dome.”
Andrew Comben, Chief Executive, Brighton Dome & Brighton Festival adds:
“Dame Anita Roddick’s entrepreneurial spirit and her ability to create something from a spark of an idea sits at the heart of what we hope Anita’s Room will be for artists, for our communities and for Brighton & Hove as a whole.
"We are so grateful for The Roddick Foundation’s support for this vital element of our redevelopment. The city has lacked dedicated spaces for artists to devise and make work and now, alongside The Dance Space and other partners, Anita’s Room will add vital infrastructure to our city’s creative sector.”
Cllr Phélim Mac Cafferty, Leader of Brighton & Hove City Council says: “The culture and arts offer runs through Brighton & Hove like letters through a stick of rock.
"It’s crucial that we find ways to ensure that artists’ spaces continue to be provided.
"Dame Anita Roddick was one of our city’s great pioneers, opening her first Body Shop only a street away from the Corn Exchange. It is appropriate that the city’s newest, free of charge, creative space will provide a home for the cultural and arts innovators of tomorrow in a building synonymous with brave artistic production.”
Royal Pavilion Estate regeneration
The Corn Exchange and Studio Theatre refurbishment is the first phase in the Royal Pavilion Estate regeneration project, a long-term collaboration between Brighton & Hove City Council, Brighton Dome & Brighton Festival and Brighton & Hove Museums (formerly the Royal Pavilion & Museums Trust).
The long-term vision for the project is to reunite the historic estate as a major UK cultural destination, equipping it for a sustainable future and as a centre for heritage and the arts which reflects the unique spirit of Brighton.
The Corn Exchange and Studio Theatre refurbishment is realised with leadership support from Brighton & Hove City Council, Arts Council England, National Lottery Heritage Fund and Coast to Capital Local Enterprise Partnership, in conjunction with support from trusts & foundations and many individual donors.
Full details and updates about the Brighton Dome refurbishment project can be found at brightondome.org/our_future/