The Victoria Theatre is the oldest theatre building still standing in New South Wales, and it has the tallest and oldest fly tower, spanning three levels. In its early days, it was an important cultural hub for the City of Newcastle, showing theatrical and vaudeville productions. Later silent pictures were introduced to the theatre and were followed by modern movies.
The venue hosted famous Australian Actors June Bronhill, Joan Hammond and Lillie Langtry. Classic Australian melodramas such as the Seven Little Australians and the Squatter’s Daughter were performed there. ‘The Vic’ has high aesthetic value including the gold plated ceiling rose detail, the stage, fly tower and proscenium arch along with other surviving interior elements which are distinctive and unique.
The 1909 performances of the Squatter’s Daughter were performed with a contingent of real sheep and horses.
The Victoria Theatre not only hosted theatrical performances, in November 1913 it was host to a boxing contest between the legendary Les Darcy and Bob Whitelaw.
The site is being developed by Century Venues into a theatre and entertainment venue.
State and Local
What is a Fly tower?
Also known as a fly loft or fly space, a fly tower is a large space above the stage which holds the theatrical rigging and battens. The tower enables stage crew to fly (hoist) scenery, curtains and lights at changes of scene. A theatre’s fly tower needs to be at least the height of the stage to enable the lifting of the curtain or scenery screen up and out of sight of the stage.