South London's erratic temple of the avant-garde
The forward-thinking Battersea Arts Centre, which inhabits the old Battersea Town Hall, has become synonymous with experimental theatre. Under long-term artistic director David Jubb it's styled itself as home of 'scratch' (work-in-progress) performance, but frequently breaks cover with mini-festivals of finished work and the occasional huge, mad project – notably Punchdrunk's immersive 'Masque of the Red Death', which totally took over the entire theatre for a year. It also fosters strong links with the local community – not least as a venue to get married in – and is popular with comedians as a venue for trialling new work.
It has a constantly festival air, with cheap tickets and a convivial bar that offers a wide selection of beers and decent tapas.
Its occasionally turbulent history has been marked by at least one theatre of closure due to loss of funding, and a dramatic fire in March 2015 that closed large portions of the building.
To the outside eye, however, BAC remains indestructible, with fire damage just another phase in a building that's in constant flux and development.
|Venue name:||Battersea Arts Centre|
|Transport:||BR: Clapham Junction; Tube: Clapham Common/Stockwell|
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'SUPERBLACKMAN' is the story of Al, who discovers he can fly - and creates a graphic novel to tell his story. It's created by Lekan Lawal, as part of a partnership between BAC, Bush Theatre, and Artistic Directors of the Future. Ages 14-plus.Experimental Until Saturday December 1 2018
What is a vessel? It can mean a ship, a curved container used to hold liquid, or a person who is used for a particular purpose. We might say, for example, “These four performers are the vessels of writer Sue MacLaine’s ambition.” ‘vessel’ presumably takes...Experimental Until Saturday November 24 2018
Rendezvous in Bratislava
Miriam Sherwood's show is inspired by the discovery of cabaret scripts by her Slovakian grandfather, Laco Kalina, who struggled against both fascist and communist governments in his homeland. Mixing storytelling, original songs performed by Slovakian...Experimental Until Saturday November 24 2018
Return to Elm House
Battersea Arts Centre was a pretty wonderful place to explore even before a huge redevelopment project restored the Grand Hall, post fire. Now kids will get a chance to adventure down its corridors with 'Return to Elm House', an interactive show that's...Children's Saturday December 1 2018 - Sunday December 30 2018
This review is of the show's 2014 run. Little Bulb's 'Orpheus' returns to Battersea Arts Centre in December 2018. Watching Little Bulb’s batshit bonkers, meta-theatrical retelling of the Greek legend of Orpheus is a bit like watching Professor Brian...Drama Wednesday December 5 2018 - Sunday December 30 2018
110% John Kearns and Pat Cahill: The Christmas Specials
Alternative comedy heroes John Kearns (double Edinburgh Comedy Award-winner) and Pat Cahill (multi-award winning nonsense merchant) present two special yuletide editions of their ramshackle comedy night. Expect festive singalongs, merry sketches and...Stand-up Wednesday December 19 2018 - Thursday December 20 2018
Ben Target: Splosh!
Daring art-comedian Ben Target was nominated for Best Newcomer at the 2012 Edinburgh Comedy Awards and is constantly reinventing himself. His latest solo show, 'Splosh!', is a mix of storytelling, live art, silly jokes and physical comedy, all based...Solo shows Tuesday February 26 2019 - Saturday March 2 2019
Average User Rating
4.9 / 5
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I keep remembering the Mask of the Red Death. Can't get it out of my head. It's got to THE venue in London capable of handling such an immersive event. I wish to god they'd do it again!
Beautiful building ,refurbished to high standard,great theatre,comedy and art and a great bar with lovely food!
Rising from the ashes.....BAC is a great community resource. Interesting plays, talks, good bar/food and discounts if you become a member which is only £24 a year and helps support them.
Battersea Arts Centre is a brilliant theatre that involves young people in creative and fun yet demanding productions. It is doing wonderful work, getting people involved and for people to go and see.
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