Performing Arts

The Stanwix Arts Theatre has been Carlisle’s theatre for many years. Opened in the early 1970s, the Stanwix Arts Theatre flourished into the 1980s as a public theatre and cinema, providing weekly touring theatre and film programmes that enriched the cultural life of Carlisle.

Performing Arts courses started to be developed in the early 1990s and the College developed a programme of further education programmes to complement the existing successful visual arts courses.

Over the last decade, the College has widened its curriculum to cover all areas of the performing arts at all levels of provision. Developments have included specialist music theatre, technical theatre and dance provision that has attracted a different kind of student to Carlisle.

These specialist higher education programmes have been among the most successful courses offered by the College during the early years of the 21st century and these will reach even higher levels when the first MA in Performing Arts programme starts in October 2007.

Successful partnership ventures have been implemented with the Theatre by the Lake in Keswick to give the College’s students a real taste of professional life in the performing arts, and the College’s own productions have become an important part of the Carlisle arts environment.

The Stanwix Arts Theatre now puts on almost 100 student productions each year, and this has had a substantial impact on the provision of touring theatre in Cumbria so that there is now a need to identify additional performance spaces for professional and touring theatre.