The Enmore Theatre plays a distinctive role in the social and cultural life of the city and occupies a unique position in Sydney’s theatrical history.
International acts such as Coldplay, Oasis and the Rolling Stones have filled stadiums around the world. The opportunity to experience these acts in an intimate theatre setting is one that Sydney’s Enmore theatre has delivered and much more since it opened in 1908.
Renowned as Sydney’s longest running live theatre venue, the Enmore has also hosted the full range of the arts from photographic, performing arts, music and motion picture. It survived the 1980s where the Sydney pro-development movement saw the demolition of the Regent theatre. It has also survived the turbulent cinema industry that a few years ago saw the demise of the Valhalla Theatre in neighbouring suburb, Glebe.
The Enmore has survived and prospered by diversifying its entertainment programming to a broader market combined with its location in Sydney’s inner suburb of Newtown, which is renowned for being the city’s hub of independent arts, music and culture.
The architectural style has been described as “Art Nouveau, Edwardian, Art Moderne and various Art Deco”, and it is good to know that the Enmore Theatre is classified by the National Trust and is listed in the Historic Buildings Register of the Australian Institute of Architects.
In our interview with Steve Balbi, he describes what the Enmore theatre means to him:
“There’s a certain prestige about the Enmore that’s kind of a little bit like the Sydney Cricket Ground, not at an arena level but at a theatre level. It’s beautiful, it’s about music, it’s about performance.”