As an artist-run space, the Varscona is home to six theatre companies, which employ some of the best stage professionals in Canada. From twisted comedies thick with wit, to riveting dramas replete with character, each performance serves up a one-of-a-kind, unforgettable experience.
The Varscona Theatre is one of Edmonton’s busiest and most accessible theatre spaces. Located in the heart of Edmonton’s historic Old Strathcona district, the venue is a vital part of Edmonton’s theatre ecology and operates year round. Originally built in 1956 as a fire hall, the venue was repurposed in 1982 as a performing arts venue.
Hosting more than 35,000 Edmontonians annually, the Varscona Theatre is home to a core of highly respected professional theatre companies including Shadow Theatre, Teatro la Quindicina, Die-Nasty The Live Improvised Soap Opera. Together the resident companies employ over 100 professional artists.
In order to properly manage the venue’s operating and facility needs, the Varscona Theatre Alliance (VTA) was formed in 1996. The Varscona Theatre Alliance is a volunteer run cooperative board comprised of members of the resident companies. Over the course of 350 cultural performances each year, the venue is also an affordable rental option to the community for independent productions and has become a vital venue to Edmonton’s internationally acclaimed Fringe Theatre Festival each August.
The Varscona Theatre has recently under gone a $7.5 million dollar renovation.
- 200 seats in main theatre (up from 176)
- Steep rake for optimal views
- Curvilinear stage sits a few feet from the front row
- A lobby that’s three times the size of the old one
- Soundproofed theatre chamber, maximized for acoustics
- State-of-the-art lighting and sound
- Secondary 60-seat space for rehearsals and more intimate shows.
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