News & Media

Melbourne Recital Hall and Theatre project completed

Premier John Brumby today announced the early completion of Melbourne’s new $128 million recital centre and theatre complex.
Mr Brumby, on a site tour of the recently completed Melbourne Recital Centre and the new Melbourne Theatre Company (MTC) theatre at Southbank, said the project included four new arts spaces in two distinct buildings, each with dedicated backstage and public spaces.
“This impressive project, which is the latest addition to Victoria’s cultural landscape, has reached the milestone of practical completion three months ahead of schedule,” Mr Brumby said.
“The complex now goes into a testing and commissioning phase, where its sophisticated acoustics and technical systems will be tuned like a fine instrument.
“Arts and culture are just as important drawcards to Melbourne as major events and sporting tradition, these two buildings will help further develop our record as Australia’s cultural capital.”
Arts Minister Lynne Kosky said the Melbourne Recital Centre and MTC Theatre (MRC/MTC) project ended a 30-year quest for both a home for the MTC and chamber music in Melbourne.
“Dame Elisabeth Murdoch Hall will put Melbourne on the international map for chamber music while the MTC’s John Sumner theatre, ends the search for a permanent home for one of Victoria’s enduring cultural institutions,” Ms Kosky said.
“This project provides world-class venues that we can all be proud of. They will drive Melbourne’s music and theatre scene and provide vast new opportunities for local talent.
“These new venues will provide important new opportunities for local artists and musicians to showcase their talent and develop their careers while attract some of the world’s best performers and offer a range of new experiences for Victorian audiences.”
Major Projects Minister Theo Theophanous said the quality of the recital centre and theatre projects was a tribute to local skills and workmanship.
“The MRC is a landmark building and one of the most intricate music halls ever built – a masterpiece of design, engineering and construction,” Mr Theophanous said.
“The MTC Theatre will set the benchmark for similar facilities, with the latest technology, a full fly tower and first-class backstage accommodation for actors and technical staff. The unique illuminated word wall will delight audiences and give every performance a sense of occasion.
“The whole project has created 500 jobs during construction and when operational will employ 25 full-time staff across the Recital Centre and MTC as well as a large casual workforce, hundreds of musicians and actors each year.”
The MRC/MTC complex will now enter a testing and commissioning phase. Performances will begin early next year with the start of the Melbourne Recital Centre and MTC’s 2009 programs.