“ Address: Frankwell Quay / Shrewsbury / Shropshire / England / SY3 8FT / Tel: 01743 281281 „
=Theatre Severn Shrewsbury=
The theatre Severn is a newish theatre, having been built about 3 years ago, it is located in the town centre of Shrewsbury, in the Frankwell area, there is a large pay and display car park almost adjacent to the theatre. It is easily accessible by foot from the town centre, and accessible from most roads into the town centre. The river Severn is right but the theatre so from the one side of the theatre you have lovely views of the river and town, the planning was such that this was a factor that was taken into account.
=Two for the price of One=
Although this is called Theatre Severn there are two theatres within the premises. The larger is referred to as the Auditorium, and the smaller is the Walker theatre.
This is a small one tier area, it is used for up and coming comedians, local plays, dance groups, amateur dramatics, this is accessible from the 1st Level of the main area.
You arrive on the ground floor of the premises, this is light and airy, high ceiling, chrome finish, in this section is the box office, which is open daily, (times do vary) and evenings if there is a show on. There is a ramp down as well as some steps, from here there is seating areas, 2 lifts to the theatre auditorium areas. In my opinion the lifts are far too small, as coming out of a show you could be waiting 20 minutes for the lift, as well as a the sweeping staircase.
On the first floor, if you come up stairs or lift your see a seating area, and the bar in the corner, this has a lovely open plan feel, high ceilings, and regularly has art exhibitions on. The bar serves a wide range of drinks, from cider, to Real Ale, wine by glass or bottle, soft drinks and snacks such as Pringles and chocolate. Prices are reasonable in here and are on par with most pubs.
There is a kiosk area, which is open show times, for coffee, drinks, ice-creams, etc, this week I paid £2 for a Magnum, £2.50 for a pot of ice cream
Just to the left of this is another seating area, and when there is a show on there is generally merchandising stall set up.
There is a outdoor area, which a balcony overlooking the river Severn.
On this level is the Walker theatre.
For the main theatre is the Stalls, - there are wheelchair spaces within the Stalls, and generally the stalls tickets are priced on 3 barriers, dependant on the view and show, some shows will be one price for all, others have the pricing structure.
From memory its rows A-N and seats 1-31 although not all rows have that many seats due to the semi circle feel of the theatre.
The first two rows can be taken out for bigger productions, such as the forthcoming "Beauty and The Beast on Ice" by the Russian ice Skating stars.
On this level is also a set of toilets, there is 1 disabled toilet, about 10/12 cubicles in the ladies, sorry can't comment on the gents. As with any theatre there is always a queue for the ladies toilets.
Here we have the entrance to the circle, this is also in a semi circle format, I don't like heights so can't comment re the view, although I have been told by friends that you do get a good view, again depending on the show there is different price structures.
On this floor there is also a kiosk and toilets - both attracting big queues.
There is a beautiful restaurant within the theatre, you can pre-book a table (which is advisable) this is open most days, for timings I would suggest checking the website. I have eat here a couple of times, they do a quite a good selection of food, and where possible the food is locally sourced.
This is a selection from the menu as of today.
Starters - £4.50 Soup to £5.50 Marinated lamb & courgette skewer with mint syrup (6 choices for starters)
Mains - £11.50 Wild mushroom, leeks and mascarpone fussillli to £13.95 Pan fried duck breast, Savoy cabbage, minted peas, cut chips and port sauce (6 choices)
Sweets - £3.95 Selection of ice-cream and sorbets to £6.95 for Shropshire Cheeseboard, chutney and fruit
Sides - £2.00 - Buttered new potatoes, Mixed salad, Mixed vegetables and Hand cut chips
Special Offer - £16 for 2 courses, £19.50 for three courses.
.Again, toilets, and there is also the top circle, - for all I can say is if you don't do heights, this level is not for you.
Since the theatre has been open they produce a local pantomime at Christmas, it does not have a celebrity lead, but is still popular and many shows are sell outs. There a wide range of shows to cater for every taste, and Theatre Severn is starting to get some good shows, groups and West End tours, this year I have seen Colin Fry, (Medium), The Soldiers who I would highly recommend, and more recently The Hairy Bikers, generally there is always an Agatha Christie play which runs for a week as well as West end shows without the prices. For the younger generation there has been Chuckle brothers, Cbeebies stars. With future stars including Showaddywaddy
As I mentioned earlier prices do vary, according to the show, but on average are £15 to £30 a tickets. There are discounts for seniors, students, children, disabled visitors.
Tel: 01743 281281
=Booking A ticket=
This could not be easier,
Book In person - You can turn up at Box office in person
Phone - Tel (01743 281281)
Online - https://tickets.shropshire.gov.uk/peo/hall.asp
=Bar and Restaurant=
These are open to members of the public, and I would highly recommend visiting.
=What I would change=
The only thinks I would have liked to have seen more toilets, and another lift, as it does get hectic in both areas.
=Would I recommend=
A big yes, this theatre is defiantly worth a visit.
I have just returned from watching a pantomime at Shrewsbury's Theatre Severn, and thought I would share my experience of the theatre with you. Please note, this was not my first visit to the theatre as I have been there many times before.
~ * Is It Easy To Find? * ~
Theatre Severn is located in the Shropshire town of Shrewsbury. It is a brand new theatre and was opened around 2 years ago (instead of the old theatre). The theatre is located in a convenient place; right by the Frankwell carpark which means that there is always plenty of space to park your car; last night, as well as being a busy theatre night, there was also late night Christmas Shopping in the town of Shrewsbury and yet there was still plenty of places to park the car. The theatre is just two minute walk from the car park. The theatre is also in a great location as is it is right by the river which means that you get a good a great view of the river (not when you are actually in the theatre watching the show) but when you come out of the actual theatre and into the foyer.
The theatre is easy to find as it is clearly labelled and also there are lots of posters up advertising 'what's on' and so it is easy to see.
~ * Pick Your Show! * ~
You can either pop in and collect a brochure to see what's on or you can look on their website.
~ * Buying Your Tickets * ~
It couldn't be more simple. You can either pop in and buy your tickets, buy them over the telephone, or if like me, buy them on the internet; http://www.theatresevern.co.uk/
I like buying them on the internet as you can pick your seats and see exactly where you are; you can even see which seats have already been booked etc. You then choose which date you would like to see the show and then pay using your credit card. You will then receive an email confirming your booking. Your tickets will arrive by post within a couple of days; I find that the tickets are always received very quickly which is good.
~ * Ok, So Let's Go Inside * ~
I always think that when you first walk into the theatre it doesn't look that welcoming as it is practically laid out and quite plain looking. To go to the actual theatre (where you will be watching the show), you have to walk up some steps (at busy times they can get quite crowded).
~ * What's It Like Inside * ~
There are plenty of seats to have a sit down before and after a show. There is even a 'welcoming looking' little bar, however I have never been into the bar though as we have always usually arrived around 5 minutes before a show. It does look quite popular though.
There is also plenty of space to 'hang around' whether you are waiting for the show to begin or waiting for the rest of your party to arrive.
One good thing about being in the foyer having a drink before the show is that there is announcement which tells you when there are ten minutes left, five minutes left and two minutes left before the show starts. This gives you plenty of warning to pop to the loo etc.
~ * Where's My Seat? * ~
There are three sets of seating; on the floor, on the middle balcony or on the high balcony. I have sat in all three different seating areas. The first time we sat on the floor; I don't know why, but I did not like sitting on the floor as I felt uncomfortable knowing that there were lots of people behind and above me. Another time we went, we sat right on the top balcony (as we had booked late, these were the only seats available); I have a small fear of heights and so when we first found our seats, my first thought was 'oh my god!' as they were really high up and looking down on the stage. However, as the show went on, I got used to the height. The last few times we have been to the theatre, we have sat on the middle balcony and I have to say this is definitely my favourite place to sit as not only do you get a great view of the stage (a great clear view) but you also feel as though you are 'privately viewing' a show as other viewers don't seem to surround you so much up here (like they do on the bottom). So I would definitely recommend the middle balcony as the best place to sit.
~ * What Are The Staff Like? * ~
There are always plenty of staff around; there is some on reception and then there is also a member of staff standing by each entrance door into the theatre; they check that you have your tickets and show you where your seats are. They also answer any questions that you have. They are always friendly and helpful.
~ * What About Munchies * ~
There are one or two stalls selling things like soft drinks and confectionary such as bags of Minstrels and Maltesers etc. They also sell ice creams; last night I saw members of staff go around the theatre selling ice creams during the break. I had a small tub of chocolate ice cream which was really nice; not sure how much it cost though as someone else bought it for me. I do know that the 'sweets' are very expensive. For example a bag of Minstrels (the same kind you find in the supermarket etc) can set you back around £3 which I think is a bit ridiculous, and so would recommend buying them somewhere else.
~ * Oh Come On...What About The Shows...That's The Only Reason I Go To The Theatre!! * ~
Ok ok!! Sorry! Just thought I would mention the pre-show bits first so that it is all in order. So now for the important bit...the shows.
There are many shows put on each year. From what I can remember, I have been to the theatre four times since it first opened around two years ago. I will now describe some of the shows I have seen.
~ * Rock Around The Clock * ~
The first show I saw was called 'Rock Around The Clock' which was an all singing and all dancing show starring Roxanne McPallette (from Emmerdale!). We sat on the 'floor' bit and I was pleased that I could see Roxanne (she's famous!!) really clearly which was good. I spent the whole show thinking 'oh my god I am sitting right in front of someone famous'. I did enjoy the show, however I think it was more for older people as it was based on songs from the 70's etc (and so I didn't know much of the music), whereas the rest of the audience were singing and dancing along. It was a good show though.
~ * Pantomime 2010 - Cinderella * ~
This was the first time I had voluntarily gone along to a pantomime (apart from when I used to go with primary school). When I was younger (around 7 or 8) I used to always enjoy the shows we used to go and see with primary school, yet as I got older I never really knew much about pantomimes (apart from the obvious 'oh yes it is' and 'he's behind you'. So when I went along to see this show last year, I did feel a bit like a 'big kid' when I first sat down as I thought 'it's a kids show'. However, the pantomime was for adults just as much as it was for children. It was a fantastic show; full of singing, dancing, brilliant costumes and hilarious jokes which had everyone laughing along. I really enjoyed this show; the cast were brilliant and so professional.
~ * Comedy Show * ~
Now, I can't remember exactly what this show was called, however it consisted of three stand up comedians; I think they all used to be famous (yet I was too young to know about). They were really funny and I laughed all night. It was nice to see 'old fashioned' comedy. All the comedians were brilliant; I was really impressed with one of the comedians who was in his 80's! A really funny show!
~ * Pantomime 2011 - Aladdin * ~
After enjoying last year's pantomime, I was really looking forward to seeing this year. One thing my friends find funny about me is the fact that I haven't seen many Disney films (when I was a kid, I hated anything cartoony and 'fake', I much preferred the real thing, e.g I preferred the real '101 Dalmations' film compared to the cartoon version)...anyway back to the review....what I am trying to say is that I had never seen Aladdin; I knew that it was about something to do with a lamp yet I didn't know the full story...until last night that is.
I thought that the pantomime was brilliant. The singing and acting was brilliant and I thought that the cast interacted with the audience really well. They worked so hard on stage and I really enjoyed it.
~ * Overall View On The Shows * ~
So all in all, the shows are fantastic and are always of high quality and include a professional cast. There really is something to suit everyone, whether you like comedy, pantomimes, plays, music, ballet, bands, opera, etc there really is something for all.
I always say after I have been to see a show that: 'I am definitely going to go more', however, I do find (and it is probably the same with all theatres), but I find that there are only a couple of shows a year that suit my taste. Whilst there is something for everyone, I find that there is only the odd comedy show or music show that I like and so for that reason I would like if they had more comedy shows and musicals etc.
~ * What About Prices? * ~
The prices are generally very good. The pantomime prices (last night) varied between £11 and £15 depending on where you sit. Because I am a student, I paid £12.50 for my ticket and still had a great view. There are also other discounts available; OAPs, children, students etc. I have to say, you get excellent value for your money.
~ * Restaurant * ~
The theatre does have it's own restaurant. When we first went to the theatre to see our first show, we thought that we would try this restaurant.
We were expecting it to be very posh, what with being the theatre at all, and so we were a bit disappointed to see that it was a bit like a café; there wasn't anything formal about it which was a shame. The service was excellent and the food was good, but we were just disappointed with the atmosphere; it really looked like a café. I can't remember exactly what I had to eat, but it was something 'cheesy' with filo pastry.
We ate before we saw the show. They asked us if we like to have a drink during the break. They said that if we ordered our drinks for the break and paid for them then, they would be waiting for us on the table that we had sat at, during the break. We thought that this was a great service and thought that it sounded like a good idea (there were 5 of us in total).
The break was 15 minutes long - however time we got out of our seats and fought through the crowd - our drinks were there waiting on the table for us as promised - however, we had to time at all to drink them. A couple of members of our party had a pint of beer each; which they had around 3 minutes to drink. We only had a couple of sips and had to leave the rest which did seem like a waste and a bit of a sneaky way of making money out of people. It does sound a lovely idea, however its just not practical.
~ * What Else * ~
There are toilets, however expect to queue, as they are usually busy at typical times etc; before the show and during the break. However, we have found that if you go around 15 minutes before the show is due to start then there isn't normally that much of a queue which is good.
There is a lift for wheel chair users and easy access.
They sell glow lights etc for children; this is the first time I have seen this, but they did seem really popular last night; lots of flashy lights and flashy 'cat ears'.
They are very child friendly!
Finding your way around is generally very easy.
The seats are so comfortable; you can really relax and feel totally home.
~ * Recommended? * ~
All in all, I would definitely recommend this theatre! It really is a lovely experience.
For more information, check out their website at: http://www.theatresevern.co.uk/
Thanks for reading!
Xdonzx / xd-o-n-z-x
I went to this theatre last year and I thought it was great.
For us the nearest place to see concerts and shows is the NEC/NIA in birmingham or in Wolverhampton. This is ok but I find getting out of these places a nightmare and it just makes for a long evening. So when a theatre opened up in Shrewsbury I had to see if it was any good, as we live about 8 miles out of Shrewsbury towards Telford.
The theatre is located in Shrewbury and is very easy to get to, and has a huge car park, which is very easy to navigate, and I liked everything about it.
Their website has listings that tell you who is on and it goes at least 3 or 4 months into the future, and I think eventually bigger names will be doing gigs here. You can sign up for a newsletter so you never miss out on any upcoming gigs.
We were fortunate enough to get Seth Lakeman tickets, (folk artist) and the concert was brilliant. The tickets were about £15.00 each too which I thought was very reasonable and make a great gift for someone.
The theatre is a lot smaller than somewhere like the NEC, but that makes it so much better and more intimate. It has two levels, I chose the upper tier right at the front (I am quite short, so if I'm behind anyone can rarely see anything). This was a great place to sit, as there was a barrier to lean on, quite a lot of leg room and obviously no-one in front of us.
Getting into the theatre was easy after parking, you just walk in, no queueing or anything and there is a lovely bar that is upstairs, so we went and had a drink there, I think the drinks were quite expensive but we expect that at any theatre.
After the concert we simply walked to our car and drove straight out the car park, there was a small queue of cars waiting to get out but nothing compared to the queuing at the bigger venues, and 15 minutes later we were home.
It was a great evening and such a pleasure to go there, I am always looking at the acts they have on now. If you live anywhere near this venue it's definitely worth going there rather than into Birmingham or Wolverhampton, it just makes the evening so much more relaxed and you don't have to leave the concert early to try and beat the traffic.
For more information you can visit their website via the link below.