Horsham Town Hall and Regional Art Gallery

Client

Williams Ross Architects

Location

Horsham, VIC

Completion date

2016

Horsham Town Hall and Regional Art Gallery is a significant civic building dating from 1939. The building recently underwent a transformative refurbishment with additions and improvements to its facilities. The building has retained many of its original art deco features.

The Project

Opening its doors in February 2016, the rejuvenated arts centre now provides residents and regional visitors with:

  • A new 500-seat performing arts auditorium
  • A rehearsal studio/function room
  • Full refurbishment of the existing heritage listed Town Hall and Regional Art Gallery
  • Expansion of the art gallery exhibition space and collection storage
  • A new foyer running the length of the building and connecting Wilson and Pynsent Streets

Creating an Inclusive Environment

One key challenge was the question of accessibility. The Theatre is now fully accessible to people of all abilities, from front of house to backstage and technical areas. A full fly tower matches the capacity afforded in metropolitan performing arts centres, and in conjunction with the addition of modern audio visual systems allows for the highest quality professional productions to be delivered in Horsham.

Outcomes

Already recognised as one of the most inclusive and progressive galleries in regional Victoria, the refurbishment, expansion and modernisation of the Horsham Regional Art Gallery has cemented its place as an icon of visual arts, and the new 500-seat auditorium is presenting local and touring arts productions – bringing the best to the region and showcasing the region’s talent.

Lessons Learnt

Effective stakeholder engagement at an early stage on the project allowed us to effectively integrate an existing building with a new venue.

“It is a joy and a privilege tonight to play our acoustic music in your wonderful new theatre. With the assistance of the fly tower, the acoustics in the new theatre mean that no amplification is required for any instrument.”

William Hennessy, Artistic Director of the Melbourne Chamber Orchestra