‘Simple and restrained’ post-fire rebuild of Melbourne’s La Mama Theatre

Indicative designs have been revealed for the proposed rebuild of the La Mama Theatre in Melbourne’s Carlton, a year on from the fire that ravaged the building.

The non-profit theatre, which was established in 1967, burnt down on 19 May 2018 after an electrical fault sparked a fire. The venue hosted independent and experimental productions and has over the past year continued to put on shows at satellite events around Melbourne.

Architect Meg White, who has had a 25-year-long involvement with the theatre as a set designer and performer, said her design would keep to the spirit of the original building – a straightforward brick building that was adapted for use as a theatre by Carlton architect George S. Clarke. The now-derelict theatre was listed on the Victorian Heritage Register for its cultural, social and architectural significance.

Illustrative design of the La Mama rebuild by Cottee Parker Architects.

Illustrative design of the La Mama rebuild by Cottee Parker Architects.

Image: Cottee Parker Architects.

“Like old La Mama, the design of new La Mama is simple and restrained,” she said. “Ornamentation only resides in the elements that are engaged with: the doors, windows and shutters. The theatre is in the every-day.”

“The architecture aims to respect and support the multitude of daily activities of this little village… The design desires to speak to La Mama’s philosophical stance of being open; open to all.”

The designs, which are have been unveiled to coincide with the start of a fundraising drive by the theatre to fund the project. More information on that effort can be found here.

Related topics

More news

See all
Indicative image from the Victoria Park Draft Vision, featuring the planned cultural centre. Draft vision for Brisbane’s largest open space revealed

Brisbane City Council has revealed its draft vision for a new public park that is set to bring “nature back into the city.”

Gene Sherman. Philanthropist, patron Gene Sherman receives honorary doctorate

Architecture and arts patron Gene Sherman has received an honorary doctorate from the University of New South Wales for her services to art and design.

The 5 Uhrig Road development by BVN. BVN proposes three-tower development in Western Sydney

A site at the edge of Sydney Olympic Park, formerly zoned light industrial, will be home to more than 500 apartments.

The Greater Shepparton Secondary College by Gray Puksand. Gray Puksand designs high school with ‘neighbourhood’ feel for Shepparton

A new school in the regional Victorian city of Shepparton will house students from all four of the city’s existing high schools.

Most read

Latest on site

Calendar