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Belgrade celebrates its 65th birthday

Charles cutting the cake with Guide Dog Carlo keeping a close eye on proceedings.

The Belgrade celebrates it's 65th Birthday

By Arabella Neville-Rolfe

On Monday 27 March – World Theatre Day 2023 - The Belgrade Theatre in Coventry celebrated their 65th birthday by welcoming hundreds of members of the local community for a free warm, welcome lunch.

The event also marked the culmination of the theatre’s ‘Warm Welcome’ initiative, which helped to support people through the winter months. The initiative, which ran from November to March with kind support from Coventry Building Society, saw the theatre support the local community warm inclusive spaces, free tea and coffee, and free activities including arts and craft workshops, film screenings, and a creative play space for families.

The theatre, which opened on 27 March 1958, recently announced a wide range of productions throughout the celebration year including Big Aunty in the B2 Auditorium, which will be devised and directed by the Belgrade’s Creative Director Corey Campbell and feature Olivier Award-nominee Alexia McIntosh (SIX the Musical)

Imperial Drummers

CEO Laura Elliot said at the event, “The Belgrade opened on this day in 1958, as a space for communities to come together for collective hope for the future and joy for the present. 65 years later it is a joy to stand in a room with artists, staff, communities, audience, board members, funders and partners. You all make this place the place it is. This is your Belgrade.

“Our vision today, is much the same as it was then – to enrich the lives of the people of Coventry and beyond. In its simplest sense that means that when you come here, whether that’s to see a show, attend a workshop, have a coffee; that we can uplift your day in some way. In the last six months, what that has meant for many is simply providing a warm safe space through our Belgrade Warm Welcome, which has supported hundreds of people at a time of need. Special thanks to Coventry Building society, our partner and supporter on that.

Alexia McIntosh entertains the guests.

“So in thinking what to do for our 65th, the obvious choice was to throw a big Warm Welcome to the City with food, performance and celebration.”

The event was attended by hundreds of people: CEO Laura Elliot made a brief speech and Box Office Supervisor Charles Bloch cut the cake, as it was also his birthday on the same day. Alexia McIntosh then sang several songs to entertain those assembled.


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