Esplanade will get a new waterfront theatre in 2021

Esplanade will get a new waterfront theatre in 2021

Curtain call

Text: Adibah Isa

Image: Mori Hidetaka,
Courtesy of Esplanade – Theatres on the Bay

By 2021, Esplanade — Theatres on the Bay will house a new 550-seat waterfront theatre

The two durian peaks will turn 15 this year, and what better way to mark the occasion than to reveal plans for expansion. Due in 2021, a new building along the 3,000sqm Esplanade Waterfront site will comprise of a flexible theatre that can seat up to 550 people. Currently, the Concert Hall seats 1,600, while the Theatre can hold up to 2,000 people. There are also plans to construct an outdoors activities plaza for more food and beverage options.

Youths who have grown up with Esplanade will remember nights out dancing alongside Baybeats at the open space, which will soon nurture the next generation of artists. "There is much more that we can do but we have literally run out of space," commented Benson Puah, CEO of The Esplanade Co Ltd. "We have introduced one generation of Singaporeans to the arts, we now have to look after the next. With this new venue, we will focus on creating even more made-in-Singapore works. In the process, we will continue to develop local capabilities and talent, and tap on our regional and international networks to take some of these artists and works overseas."

The Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth has pumped in $10 million for this mega project, which will require funds of up to $30 million for its completion. Targeted to present more arts programmes for schools and support youth and traditional arts groups in theatre and dance, it'll also be a new stage for medium-sized works to flourish. What's also interesting is the back-of-house, which is proposed as a more transparent outlet to allow possible access to the public, or at least a more "welcoming space".

Esplanade will be looking for project consultants to submit their design proposals for the new waterfront theatre, which will commence building in 2019.

For more information on Esplanade — Theatres on the Bay, click here