A glorious Victorian gem of a theatre. You won't see a better example of a Matcham designed theatre. This should be cherished more than those in the West End. It's a shame about it's listings. There isn't enough main stream or community theatre being done here. The cut backs by the local council and by the arts council have hit it hard. However, it does give us one of the best traditional pantos each year. Please look after it. We can't lose such a great building.
© Nick Ballon
Time Out says
Posted: Tue Sep 25 2012
Charlie Chaplin, Stan Laurel and Marie Lloyd all trod Hackney's boards during its time as a music hall. It's since been used as a television studio and, rather quaintly, as a bingo hall, before opening as a theatre proper in 1986. Today, it's a much-loved East End institution whose pantos have become the stuff of legend. High art does feature (the English Touring Opera presented Mozart's 'The Magic Flute' in 2009) as does issue-heavy theatre, often with an emphasis on class and multiculturalism. But the focus tends to be on fun: comedy, children's theatre and music all featuring large on its programme. Tours of the Grade II-listed auditorium take place during Open House London weekend in September.
What's on at Hackney Empire
- Critics' choice
The Brooklyn trio headline with their hazy psych-folk and intricate, brass-speckled indie rock. The set list here will focus on their new album 'Familiars': downbeat, hypnotic stuff that's strange and moving.
R&B, Electronica, Trip hop
- Critics' choice
When considering London singer-songwriter FKA Twigs (real name: Tahliah Barnett), one word immediately comes to mind: spellbinding. Whether it’s her creeping, sensual songs, the subtly discomfiting visuals accompanying them, or the languid, undulating...
Brass ensembles, Hip hop, Rock 'n' roll, World
Brass-heavy goodness from the nine-piece, who combine riotous Latino horns ’n’ beats with a foot-stomping blend of ska, Balkan and funk styles.
Kids' theatre, Fringe, Drama, Kids' theatre
Hackney Empire's yearly festive offering is pretty much the panto equivalent of royalty. That's mainly been down to hilariously naughty scripts, Susie McKenna's direction and a great dame - in recent years the inimitable Clive Rowe was hailed as one of...
The Radio 4 sitcom 'Rudy's Rare Records' about an old reggae store in Birmingham gets a stage adaptation from writer Danny Robbins. Lenny Henry and Larrington Walker reprise their roles as Adam and Rudy, and Jeffrey Kissoon and Joivan Wade also star....