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Hackney Empire

Hackney Empire is a variety theatre for the 21st century and has been providing quality entertainment for over 100 years. Centrally located in thriving east London, the beautiful Frank Matcham designed grade 2 listed theatre was built in 1901 and presents a diverse programme of local, national and international music, opera, comedy, musical theatre, family shows and pantomime.

Funding awards

  • 2012-2013: £366,391
  • 2013-2014: £374,818
  • 2014-2015: £384,563

Video feed

#HackneyPanto on Twitter

There's still great availability for Mother Goose at Hackney Empire http://www.hackneyempire.co.uk/mothergoose "Clive Rowe's performance as Mother Goose, 5 stars from me" Greg James BBC Radio 1 ★★★★★ "This is as lavish a pantomime as you’ll ever see!" Time Out ★★★★ "Quirky, joyous homegrown entertainment" Evening Standard ★★★★ "Stuffed with silliness" The Guardian ★★★★ "Beautiful blend of the spoofy and the sincere" The Times ★★★★ Subscribe to our channel for more videos! www.youtube.com/thehackneyempire

Be like Barbara the Sheep and get to the Panto!

There's no excuse to be stuck in the office at Christmas time. So be like Barbara and get down to Hackney Empire! Mother Goose at Hackney Empire is packed with every ingredient for the perfect festive family treat. Expect larger-than-life characters, loads of laughs, outrageous costumes, dazzling dance moves, incredible live music and of course… plenty of heroes to cheer and baddies to boo! Who needs #MontythePenguin when you can have #BarbaratheSheep http://www.hackneyempire.co.uk/mothergoose

Audition for Hackney's Biggest Talent Show - Alter Ego 2015

The search is on for Hackney's untapped talent. Do you think you have talent? Prove it. Whatever your talent, if you think you have what it takes to perform on the Hackney Empire stage, come to the auditions and show us what you are made of. www.hackneyempire.co.uk/alterego2015 Winners will be mentored by top industry professionals. They will perform alongside headline acts and 2014 winner Di Andre, in front of over a thousand people at the Alter Ego 2015 Final, Fri 30 Jan at Hackney Empire. Alter Ego marks the start of the free youth arts festival, Discover Young Hackney. Find out more at discoveryounghackney.com. To book your audition please complete a registration form and send to alterego@hackneyempire.co.uk or call 020 8985 2424. Auditions Dates: Sat 10 Jan 10am – 7pm Hackney Empire Applicants must be aged 13-19 and a resident of Hackney. Subscribe to our channel for more videos! www.youtube.com/thehackneyempire

Mother Goose at the Hackney Empire!

Don't miss Clive Rowe's fabulous return to Hackney's famous panto! http://www.hackneyempire.co.uk/mothergoose This show is packed with every ingredient for the perfect festive family treat. Expect larger-than-life characters, loads of laughs, outrageous costumes, dazzling dance moves, incredible live music and of course… plenty of heroes to cheer and baddies to boo! "this is as lavish a pantomime as you’ll ever see, with wonderful costumes and beautiful sets" Time Out ★★★★ "Clive Rowe’s hilarious costume parade and Sharon D Clarke’s vocal pyrotechnics that inevitably steal the show." The Stage ★★★★ "quirky, joyous homegrown entertainment" Evening Standard ★★★★ Filming by Paul Cox and John Harding Subscribe to our channel for more videos! www.youtube.com/thehackneyempire

Show 21 more videos

Hackney Empire Panto Appeal!

What do Clive Rowe, Sharon D Clarke and Priscilla the Goose do for the rest of the year? Pantomime Dames aren't just for Christmas you know... Imagine what you could do with a magical goose who lays priceless golden eggs? Discover what becomes of Mother Goose when she is given Princess Priscilla, a magic goose with a golden talent. Perhaps having everything she ever wanted isn’t all it’s CRACKED up to be! Mother Goose is packed with every ingredient for the perfect festive family treat. Expect larger-than-life characters, loads of laughs, outrageous costumes, dazzling dance moves, incredible live music and of course… plenty of heroes to cheer and baddies to boo! http://www.hackneyempire.co.uk/mothergoose Acting for Others Acting for Others raises money for 15 theatrical charities. Between the charities they help and support actors, singers, dancers, backstage, front of house, directors - all theatre workers who are unable to work due to illness, injury or old age and need financial assistance. http://actingforothers.co.uk/ Credits Starring Clive Rowe as Himself Sharon D Clarke as Herself Susie McKenna as Herself Alix Ross as Princess Priscilla And Martha Quigley Linda Tolhurst Simone Ashley Elaine Price Creature Design Scott Brooker The Hackney Empire would like to thank The National Theatre Stage Door Upper Ground, South Bank, SE1 9PX Ocean Breeze Fish Bar Ramazan Baragai & Abdul Hossein 30 Green Ln, Thornton Heath, CR7 8BB Tesco Metro 180 Well Street, Hackney, E9 6QU Snog Frozen Yogurt Queen's Walk, near Waterloo Bridge Filmed and Edited by John Harding Devised by Susie McKenna With the help of Doug Cowan Dominic Draper Yamin Choudury Subscribe to our channel for more videos! www.youtube.com/thehackneyempire

Did you spot Princess Priscilla in Hackney?

It's panto time! Well not quite, but Princess Priscilla likes to get to the Hackney Empire early. Unfortunately she got a bit lost on the way... Imagine what you could do with a magical goose who lays priceless golden eggs? Discover what becomes of Mother Goose when she is given Princess Priscilla, a magic goose with a golden talent. Perhaps having everything she ever wanted isn’t all it’s CRACKED up to be! Mother Goose is packed with every ingredient for the perfect festive family treat. Expect larger-than-life characters, loads of laughs, outrageous costumes, dazzling dance moves, incredible live music and of course… plenty of heroes to cheer and baddies to boo! http://www.hackneyempire.co.uk/mothergoose Credits Starring Alix Ross as Princess Priscilla the Magical Goose And Clive Rowe as Himself The Hackney Empire would like to thank Creature Maker Scott Brooker Everyone at Hackney City Farm 1a Goldsmith's Row, London, E2 8QA Everyone at Box Park 2 Bethnal Green Rd, London, E1 6HT Including Bimbi Fawcett Laura Jorgensen Zenon Clements Jo Pilling for their acting skills Everyone at Capelli’s Gentlemen’s Grooming 146 Crouch Hill, Crouch End, N8 9DX Filmed and Edited by John Harding Devised by Doug Cowan & Dominic Draper Directed & Driven by Yamin Choudury Subscribe to our channel for more videos! www.youtube.com/thehackneyempire

Do you have what it takes for ADP?

The Artist Development programme (ADP) is a two week summer programme for young artists aged 13-19, who have an interest in the performing arts. First started in 2000, ADP has now become Hackney Empire's flagship education programme. http://www.hackneyempire.co.uk/1836/artist-development-programme/artist-development-programme.html Subscribe to our channel for more videos! www.youtube.com/thehackneyempire

Don't Knock Tap - Behind the Scenes on ADP14

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Hackney Village 2014

Hackney Village is the Hackney Empire’s inclusive project with young people that took place Monday 28th July - Friday 1 August. Young people aged 11-19 came together for a week of workshops at Hackney Empire that culminated in a performance of ‘Monsters of the Marshes’, their own take on a classic tale. Some of those taking part in the initiative are involved in one of two Inspire! programmes – Families First and Inspired Transitions – designed to smooth their transfer between primary and secondary school. Monsters of the Marshes’ combined acting, song and dance to tell the tale of three characters – one who is greedy, one who lacks confidence and one with a bad temper. They are transported to a magical world where a sequence of events makes them realise what they need to do to change. Hackney Village is a Hackney Empire, Next Generation project, supported by The Arts Council, The Monument Trust and is part of Connecting Young Hackney. Subscribe to our channel for more videos! www.youtube.com/thehackneyempire

Sing Out Returns!

We're delighted to announce that Sing Out! the Festival of Choirs is back! in spring 2015. If you are a choir member or leader and want to to be involved in our masterclasses with a grand finale on stage, contact choirs@hackneyempire.co.uk Video features the AMC Gospel Choir performing at Sing Out! 2014. http://www.hackneyempire.co.uk/3804/shows/hackney-empire-community-choir.html Subscribe to our channel for more videos! www.youtube.com/thehackneyempire

Do you agree with the Rudy's Rare Records reviews?

We've had some fantastic reviews for Rudy's Rare Records, but the only review that matters is yours! Open from Wed 24 Sep - Sun 5 Oct, Rudy's Rare Records stars Lenny Henry, and is based on the BBC Radio 4 series. This touching comedy with real rhythm is set in an old reggae record shop in Birmingham, which is owned by the irrepressible Rudy Sharpe with the assistance of his long-suffering son Adam. The show features a live onstage band playing hits from the likes of Desmond Dekker, Toots and the Maytals, Jimmy Cliff, Sam Cooke, Sugarhill Gang and more! http://www.hackneyempire.co.uk/rudysrarerecords Subscribe to our channel for more videos! www.youtube.com/thehackneyempire

Youth Forum's Sky Studio Skills

Sky Academy & Slenky collaborated to give 11 members of Hackney Empire’s Youth Forum the chance to go behind the scenes at Sky. Slenky is a social media platform that connects young people to opportunities by collaborating with brands and organisations (https://www.slenky.com/). The group worked with amazing technology, including broadcasting quality cameras, green screens and touch screen edit tables to make their very own television report! Subscribe to our channel for more videos! www.youtube.com/thehackneyempire

"You have to see it!" Audience reactions to Rudy's Rare Records

Starring Lenny Henry, and based on the BBC Radio 4 series, this touching comedy with real rhythm is set in an old reggae record shop in Birmingham, which is owned by the irrepressible Rudy Sharpe with the assistance of his long-suffering son Adam. The show features a live onstage band playing hits from the likes of Desmond Dekker, Toots and the Maytals, Jimmy Cliff, Sam Cooke, Sugarhill Gang and more! "Howlingly funny from beginning to end" Daily Express ★★★★ "A delight from start to finish" The Independent ★★★★ "wonderful, funny, humane, live reggae-saturated play" The Daily Telegraph ★★★★ "Stuffed with gags... this comedy about a vinyl-shop owner fighting developers has the feel of a stonking hit" The Guardian ★★★★

What do you think makes Hackney Empire so special?

Lenny Henry took a break from rehearsing Rudy's Rare Records to tell us what he thought made the Hackney Empire so special. Starring Lenny Henry, and based on the BBC Radio 4 series, this touching comedy with real rhythm is set in an old reggae record shop in Birmingham, which is owned by the irrepressible Rudy Sharpe with the assistance of his long-suffering son Adam. The show features a live onstage band playing hits from the likes of Desmond Dekker, Toots and the Maytals, Jimmy Cliff, Sam Cooke, Sugarhill Gang and more! Subscribe to our channel for more videos! www.youtube.com/thehackneyempire

Don't Knock, Tap! Inspired by The Clark Brothers

40 young artists, dancers, musicians, singers, rappers and actors, chosen through ADP's audition process have devised a brand new show taking inspiration from the life and times of The Clark Brothers. The show will be a 21st century tribute to the golden age of blues, jazz and the civil rights movement. http://www.hackneyempire.co.uk/dontknocktap Subscribe to our channel for more videos! www.youtube.com/thehackneyempire

What does the Hackney Empire mean to you?

Comedian Eddie Nestor told us what the Hackney Empire means to him. Not many people know that we're actually a charity, and every pound that we raise gets spent improving what we do. But with a theatre built in 1901 in can cost a lot of money to maintain the building. This is where the National Lottery stepped in with a grant to restore the theatre and build new state of the art facilities. We're now in the running for a National Lottery award that we plan to use as the start of our building reserve, a pot of money set aside for unexpected repairs. Subscribe to our channel for more videos! www.youtube.com/thehackneyempire Footage courtesy of The One Show

What music would YOU put in Lenny Henry's new sitcom?

Comedian and writer Danny Robins has teamed up with Lenny Henry to create a new live sitcom for the Hackney Empire. Set in a old reggae shop it features music from the likes of Jimmy Cliff, Desmond Dekker and The Sugarhill Gang -- all played live by an onstage band. What music would we be crazy to miss out on? We want your recommendations! Starring Lenny Henry, Mandem on the Wall's Joivan Wade and Larrington Walker. Rudy's Rare Records is written by co-creator Danny Robins with Lenny Henry as dramaturg and fellow co-creator. http://www.hackneyempire.co.uk/rudysrarerecords

Lenny Henry: "I always wanted to do a black High Fidelity"

We spoke to the comedian and actor Lenny Henry about the new stage version of the hit Radio Four sitcom Rudy's Rare Records. This touching comedy with real rhythm is set in an old reggae record shop in Birmingham, which is owned by the irrepressible Rudy Sharpe (Larrington Walker) with the assistance of his long-suffering son Adam (Lenny Henry). With Rudy's chaotic "if it ain't on the shelf, it's on the floor" style clashing with Adam's love for order, the record shop becomes a battleground for both men. When Adam's son (E4's Youngers and Mandem on the Wall star, Joivan Wade) comes back from uni, a whole new rhythm gets added to the mix! But when greedy developers spot the shop, father and son must put their differences aside and battle to keep the music alive. Featuring music by the likes of Jimmy Cliff, Desmond Dekker and The Sugarhill Gang -- all played live by an onstage band. www.hackneyempire.co.uk/rudysrarerecords 24 Sep 2014 - 5 Oct 2014 #RudysRareRecords

Cocktails with the Blues in the Night team

We went behind the scenes of Blues in the Night and talked to the cast over a cocktail or two... Chicago 1939. One man, three women, their lives, memories and the music that gets them through the night. A scorching compilation of 26 hot blues numbers including 'When a Man Loves a Woman', 'Wasted Life Blues', 'Taking a Chance on Love' and 'Blues in the Night'. Starring the Olivier Award winner Sharon D Clarke, Paulette Ivory, Clive Rowe and Gemma Sutton. With a LIVE blues band and featuring the music of Bessie Smith, Duke Ellington, Johnny Mercer, Harold Arlen, Alberta Hunter, Jimmy Cox, Ida Cox and more. http://www.hackneyempire.co.uk/bluesinthenight #BluesInTheNight

Blues in the Night - trailer

A scorching compilation of 26 hot blues numbers including When a Man Loves a Woman, Wasted Life Blues, Taking a Chance on Love and Blues in the Night frame and explore three women's relationships with one man. The evening's music is sexy and raunchily forthright, infectiously good-humoured and always classically blues. With a LIVE blues band and featuring the music of Bessie Smith, Duke Ellington, Johnny Mercer, Harold Arlen, Alberta Hunter, Jimmy Cox, Ida Cox and more. This unique revival has the remarkable voices of West end stars Sharon D Clarke (We Will Rock You, The Lion King, Chicago, Ghost), Paulette Ivory (Aida, FELA, The Lion King, Smokey Joe's Cafe) and Clive Rowe (Kiss Me Kate, The Lady Killers, Simply Heavenly). Call the Box Office on 020 8985 2424 or visit http://www.hackneyempire.co.uk/bluesinthenight 24 April - 4 May / £25 - £10 http://www.hackneyempire.co.uk/bluesinthenight

Blues in the Night - promo

Blues in the Night 24 April - 4 May / £25 - £10 http://www.hackneyempire.co.uk/bluesinthenight A scorching compilation of 26 hot blues numbers including When a Man Loves a Woman, Wasted Life Blues, Taking a Chance on Love and Blues in the Night frame and explore three women's relationships with one man. The evening's music is sexy and raunchily forthright, infectiously good-humoured and always classically blues. With a LIVE blues band and featuring the music of Bessie Smith, Duke Ellington, Johnny Mercer, Harold Arlen, Alberta Hunter, Jimmy Cox, Ida Cox and more. This unique revival has the remarkable voices of West end stars Sharon D Clarke (We Will Rock You, The Lion King, Chicago, Ghost), Paulette Ivory (Aida, FELA, The Lion King, Smokey Joe's Cafe) and Clive Rowe (Kiss Me Kate, The Lady Killers, Simply Heavenly). Call the Box Office on 020 8985 2424 or visit http://www.hackneyempire.co.uk/bluesinthenight Subscribe to our channel for more videos! www.youtube.com/thehackneyempire

Gary Bartz, plays the Grover Washington Jr. song book

11 April 2014 http://www.hackneyempire.co.uk/garybartz Musiccisum proudly presents the legendary Jazz Master Gary Bartz. Gary will be playing highlights from his recording career including the anthemic Celestial Blues and Music is my Sanctuary. Additionally the night will feature a tour of some of the most engaging, exciting and entertaining work of the father of smooth Jazz, Grover Washington Jr. Leading the vocals on this very special night is virtuoso vocalist, Cleveland Watkiss, voted best vocalist for three consecutive years, at the Wire/Guardian Jazz Awards. The Artists will be accompanied by the formidable UK's Jazz Warriors International Collective, with support the Jazz Poet, Malik & the O.G's. Gary Bartz is a Grammy award winning American alto and soprano saxophonist and clarinetist. He has played with Miles Davis, Charles Mingus, Max Roach, and Jackie McLean. His group, the Ntu Troop, combined soul, funk, African music, hard bop, and avant-garde jazz. In late '70s, he released such acclaimed albums as, ANOTHER EARTH, HOME, MUSIC IS MY SANCTUARY, and LOVE AFFAIR, Jazz critic Stanley Crouch as "one of the very best who has ever picked up the instrument". He has recorded more than 40 solo albums and over 200 as a guest artist. He won a Grammy Award in 2005 for his playing on McCoy Tyner's album Illuminations. The late Grover Washington, Jr. Washington was an American jazz-funk / soul-jazz saxophonist. Throughout the 1970s and 1980s, Washington made some of the genre's most memorable hits, including "Mister Magic," "Reed Seed," "Winelight,". In addition, he performed very frequently with other artists, including Bill Withers, Patti LaBelle and Phyllis Hyman, Whilst his first three albums established him as a force in jazz and soul music, it was his fourth album in 1974, Mister Magic, which started his major commercial success, culminating in the signature piece for everything he would do from then on Winelight, the highlight of the album was his collaboration with soul artist Bill Withers, "Just the Two of Us," which went platinum in 1981, and also won Grammy Awards in 1982 for Best R&B Song. Subscribe to our channel for more videos! www.youtube.com/thehackneyempire

Family Fun Weekend & Dame Dash 2013

A look back at our Family Fun Weekend of 2013. With a fundraising 'Dame Dash', baby disco, African drumming, musical workshops and a tea dance, this was a fun-packed weekend to remember. Subscribe to our channel for more videos! www.youtube.com/thehackneyempire

Peppa Pig's Big Splash

15 & 16 March 2014 http://www.hackneyempire.co.uk/peppapig Fresh from the success of Peppa Pig's Party and Peppa Pig's Treasure Hunt comes Peppa's brand new show Peppa Pig's Big Splash. Come and join Peppa and her friends for another all-singing, all-dancing adventure full of songs, games and muddy puddles! Subscribe to our channel for more videos! www.youtube.com/thehackneyempire

Alter Ego 2014

Kat B (MTV Base) hosts an entertainment spectacular featuring top guest artist including Misha B (X Factor) and J Spades (UK Rapper). Alter Ego sees Hackney's young singers, dancers, rappers, actors and comedians all competing for the title Alter Ego 2014. The winner of Alter Ego will receive professional industry mentoring and have exciting opportunities to perform throughout 2014! Part of Discover Young Hackney, a Hackney Council initiative. 7 February 2014 7.30pm £2 adv, £4 on the door. http://www.hackneyempire.co.uk/alterego Subscribe to our channel for more videos! www.youtube.com/thehackneyempire

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