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Empire Theatre Toowoomba

Looking for some fun activities to involve your children, no matter what their age? Or maybe you’re searching for the perfect family day out? The local Empire Theatre might just be the place for you!

About the Empire Theatre

Located on 54-56 Neil Street right here in Toowoomba, the Empire Theatres is acclaimed as the largest performing arts precinct in regional Australia. Boasting several performance and function spaces and renowned for its classic art deco architecture, this heritage listed theatre is wholly owned by Toowoomba Regional Council and managed on it’s behalf by Empire Theatres Pty Ltd.

History of the Empire Theatre

The Empire Theatre was originally built in 1911 and rebuilt in an art deco style in 1933 following a fire. It was finally restored and reopened to the public in 1997. Serving for over 100 years, the Empire Theatre has acted as a fundament to the cultural development of the region. The Empire Theatres precinct continues to grow and develop with the inclusion of three other venues, the Empire Theatre Studio, Empire Church Theatre and the Armitage Centre.

Empire Theatre Toowoomba ceiling

The Empire Theatre Projects Company

Formed in 2009, the Empire Theatre Projects Company has the goal of providing outstanding arts experience in southern regional Queensland, committed to delivering arts programs throughout the region and providing excellent education resources to schools and also producing contemporary new work and facilitating community based events. The Empire Theatre Projects Company, through Empire Youth Art, offer workshops in Toowoomba and at regional centres including Dalby and the Lockyer Valley, as well as holiday workshops, education resource programs and IMPACT Ensemble – an elite youth performance program.

Empire Youth Arts

Empire Youth Arts was kick-started in 2010 and aims to enrich and empower the young people of the Toowoomba region by providing a variety of regular drama workshops, holiday workshops and elite performance program opportunities. The invaluable program also provides a number of classes outside of Toowoomba, working in Dalby, the Lockyer Valley, Mitchell, Charleville, Pittsworth and Crows Nest.

Drama Workshops

Empire Youth Arts run regular drama workshops which allow participants to learn drama, communication and teamwork skills through drama games, exercises and performance-based tasks run by highly qualified and experienced facilitators. They offer different levels of classes depending on age groups, catering for Grades 2-4, 5-7, 8-10 and 11- Young Adult. Visit their website for prices and times.

IMPACT Ensemble

The IMPACT Ensemble is an elite performance program for young artists aged13-29, offering them professional performance experiences, whilst at the same time making an impact on audiences. Entry is based on audition, with the ensemble working across the year to create, develop and rehearse a polished performance piece for audiences at the Empire Theatre.

Youth Bursaries

Youth Bursaries are prestigiously offered to further the cultural experiences and professional development of young people within the Toowoomba region. The Youth Bursaries offer the opportunity for creative people aged 12-25 to undertake short courses at leading Australian performing arts educational institutions under the broad study areas of dance, drama, music, film, technical production, arts administration and more. The bursaries are offered annually, with multiple winners each year.

Upcoming Family Shows

The Empire Theatre has a number of upcoming shows, suitable for the whole family!

HIPPO! HIPPO! A Big New Musical Adventure!
03 Aug – 04 Aug
Empire Theatre
‘HIPPO! HIPPO! A BIG NEW Musical Adventure! is based on the phenomenally
successful children’s classic, “There’s a Hippopotamus on Our Roof Eating
Cake”, written by Australian children’s author Hazel Edwards.’

Whether you want to sign the kids up to a drama workshop or encourage your talented young one to join the IMPACT ensemble, or maybe just head out for a fun-filled family day watching classic storybook tales come to life, The Empire Theatres can offer the whole family an experience like no other!

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Janine Mergler

Janine Mergler is a veteran Queensland teacher, graduating from QUT with a BEd majoring in Social Sciences. After many years in the classroom, Janine moved on to academia. She has proudly trained new generations of teachers in her role as a lecturer at Queensland University of Technology Faculty of Education. She has also worked in the Queensland Government as an education specialist, developing education resources and delivering community awareness programs to help families conserve water. Currently she is the owner and editor of Families Magazine, a publication specifically targeted at parents who value a quality education for children.  Janine leads a team of professionals who write about family lifestyle, early childhood, schools and education information and family-friendly events.

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