Theatre Royal

Heritage refurbishment of important cultural asset

Theatre Royal is an important piece of Australian theatre history, originally built in 1976 and designed by Harry Seidler. To bring the cultural asset back to life, Trafalgar Entertainment and Forge Venture Management engaged Buildcorp to deliver a significant heritage refurbishment and fit-out project.

The project was run concurrently with the wider transformation of 25 Martin Place, owned and managed by Dexus. Tight coordination and collaboration with the base builder of the 25 Martin Place project was required to enable the works of the theatre and meet the handover date in time for the opening production.

The box office, VIP lounges, bars and seating areas underwent a full upgrade. Significant refurbishment works to the back-of-house areas optimised the functionality of specialist technical spaces and facilities for theatrical cast and crew. The scope included new ceilings and flooring (including stage flooring), new seating, fit-out of the lobby’s cold shell, as well as a significant services and compliance upgrade. Structural expansion to the dress circle increased the seating capacity and was delivered using 3D modelling to ensure no lines of sight were impacted.

Specialist partnerships

The ECI partnership started early in the design phase to explore, resolve and de-risk the project scope across every area of the sizeable venue. Buildcorp worked closely with Trafalgar’s theatre design experts to ensure all back-and-front-of-house details were considered.

The team’s upgrades and compliance solutions were designed to protect important heritage items. Buildcorp worked with Scott Carver Architects and heritage consultants Urbis to source and prototype samples of heritage items, including the theatre’s striking gold ceiling blades, restored to their former glory.

Buildcorp also partnered with our joinery arm Euroline to develop solutions for the fit-out, including the front of house bars, the box office, VIP rooms, theatre screen cladding and feature screen displays.
By proactively managing impacts to labour and materials created by the pandemic, the project was completed on time to meet the bump-in date for the Jagged Little Pill production crew. We look forward to the rejuvenated Theatre Royal enlivening a new era of Australian theatre.

Credit – Pierre Toussaint + Trafalgar Entertainment


Trafaglar Entertainment and Forge Venture Management


Scott Carver Architects

Contract sum



6 month ECI & 28 weeks delivery


December 2021