Oldham Coliseum announces shock cancellations

THE FUTURE of Oldham’s Coliseum theatre is under threat after its spring-summer programme was cancelled.

Plays, performances and the traditional pantomime have all been axed as chiefs attempt to find a way through a funding crisis.

It all leaves the Fairbottom Street venue shrouded in uncertainty, with talks over its current financial commitments ongoing.

oldham coliseum theatre Problems started when it was announced in November the Coliseum would not be part of Arts Council England’s National Portfolio from April 1.

A programme was announced in the hope a funding solution could be found.

But after no progress was made, the decision has been taken to cancel everything that was scheduled beyond March 26, including the pantomime Sleeping Beauty.

As it stands, the last event will be play How Not To Drown.

A Coliseum statement said: “The current financial situation is not sustainable for the season as planned.

“The board of trustees and senior leadership team have been working hard to find a solution to this reduction in funding.

“The theatre put the pantomime on sale in November and announced the Spring-Summer season in early December with the best possible intentions, while still exploring options that may have enabled the continuation of the programme.

“We are working with Arts Council England and Oldham Council to honour agreements with artists and producing partners.

“It has been an incredibly difficult decision to cancel the programme of events and we understand the disappointment this will undoubtedly cause.”

Events at the Coliseum until March 26 will go ahead as planned and ticket holders for those beyond that date will be refunded in the coming weeks.

Any donations made to the theatre when booking tickets for cancelled events and Our Coliseum members whose memberships are due to expire after March 26 will also be refunded.

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