There’s nothing quite like a show or pantomime to get you in the mood for the festive season and according to a latest study the Royal Exchange Theatre in Manchester is one of the best places to visit, not only for its performances but also its magnificent architecture inside and out. Hotel company Premier Inn commissioned an eye-tracking study of over 35 theatres in the UK and globally to reveal which are the most beautiful for a festive feel this Christmas, with the Manchester theatre nabbing one of the top spots.
The study used a unique way of analysing the objective beauty of theatres; participants were asked to look at a series of images of 36 of the world’s most famous theatres, looking at both the outside building and interior theatre, and eye-tracking technology was then used to reveal which images drew the human eye most. The results revealed that the Royal Exchange Theatre in Manchester was the fifth most appealing to the eye in the UK, and with its unique interior layout and over a century of history, it’s easy to see why this captivating theatre ranked among the most beautiful overall.
When it came to interior, the Royal Exchange Theatre by St Ann’s Square came a close third in the UK, being pipped by London Coliseum and the infamous Shakespeare’s Globe. However, the stunning open-air Minack Theatre which perches on Cornwall’s atmospheric cliffs is the theatre that participants deemed most beautiful overall during the study. Originally constructed in 1930, the theatre offers sweeping panoramic views over the emerald waters of Porthcurno Bay.
Shakespeare’s Globe came in second place, with Belfast’s Grand Opera House and Cardiff’s Wales Millennium Centre following in third and fourth place. Scotland’s longest running theatre, the Glasgow Theatre Royal, rounded off the top ten list.
As for globally, the Royal Exchange Theatre was ranked in 15th place for one of the most beautiful theatres in the world. The Minack Theatre was not only the most stunning in the UK but also across the globe, and was closely followed by the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles, Dubai Opera House, Fox Theatre in Detroit and The Winter Garden in Toronto.