Grand Opera House York York
About the Grand Opera House York
Located in the middle of the historic city, York’s Grand Opera House was originally two separate buildings, with one as the corn exchange and the other as a warehouse. By 1902 the two buildings were converted into one space and the theatre opened with the pantomime Little Red Riding Hood, starring popular music hall entertainer Florrie Forde.
The Grand Opera House has been used in several capacities throughout the years and was one of the first venues in York to screen motion pictures in the early 20th century. In 1958, entrepreneur Ernest Shepherd removed the stage and Stalls to allow activities such as roller skating and bingo. In 1987, a restoration saw it revert to its original use as a theatre with carefully chosen Art Nouveau décor that reflects the theatre’s early years.
The Grand Opera House opened under its current name in 1989, although financial problems eventually saw it close until 1993. Since 2009 the theatre has enjoyed better fortune; it was acquired by the Ambassador Theatre Group and now hosts a variety of top touring musicals, plays and tribute acts in its intimate, 1,000-capacity house.