Concept

Octagon Theatre, Bolton

Summary
The Octagon Theatre is a producing theatre located in Bolton, Greater Manchester, England. The Octagon produces eight or nine professional theatre productions each year in its Main Auditorium. Productions come from a wide range of types and genres, including classic drama, contemporary plays, comedies and musicals. In recent years, the Octagon has specialized in producing great American drama, including works by Arthur Miller and Tennessee Williams. The Octagon also runs its Bolton season, which runs alongside the season of plays in the Main Auditorium, with events investigating or complementing the main season. This ranges from professional practical workshops to full-day Investigate Days with casts and creative teams. The Octagon also plays host to touring shows, including touring theatre, children's plays, and stand-up comedy. The Octagon has two performance spaces: The Main Auditorium, a flexible performance space which can present work in three configurations (in-the-round, thrust, and end-stage) and has a capacity of 300 to 400. Over the course of the season, the Octagon often presents work in all of these configurations. The Main Auditorium has a hexagonal shape, but was named the Octagon Theatre because there was an existing Hexagon Theatre in Reading. Confusingly, the Johnson Hall, in Yeovil, changed its name to the Octagon Theatre as well. The theatre's logo, originally an octagon, has been replaced with a circle, to represent a theatre being in-the-round. The Bill Naughton Studio Theatre, a studio theatre with a capacity of 100. This smaller space provides a venue for new and adventurous theatre, educational, and youth performances. The Octagon Theatre was opened on 27 November 1967 by Princess Margaret. The town council and the theatre management were officially advised that the Royal party would need no 'comfort facility', they installed a lavish loo with gold-plated fittings. Having only ever been used officially by the plumbers who needed to test it, it was completely stripped out and turned into an office space after the official opening .
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