Did you know?
In 1926 the Trecynon Welfare Committee purchased the site where The Coliseum Theatre now stands with the intention of creating an establishment which would “contribute materially to the happiness, recreation and enjoyment of the mining community of Trecynon’.
- This first Welfare Hall cost £9,000 to build
- The first foundation stone was liad on 20 November 1937
- On Saturday September 17th 1938 the ‘New Welfare Hall’ opened its doors.
- The War years saw the Coliseum establish itself as one of South Wales’ leading venues attracting many famous faces to its stage. In March 1946 the Coliseum Operatic Society was formed with their production of ‘Rose Marie’.
- In 1948 to commemorate the first ten years of the Coliseum, the theatre played host to the Covent Garden Opera House Chorus.
- In 1958 the National British Drama League Finals were held on the Coliseum stage – the first time they had been held outside England.
- In 1989 the Coliseum was purchased by Cynon Valley Borough Council and with the aid of the Welsh Office undertook a major programme of renovation and refurbishment. The theatre re-opened on the April 11th 1992. Two days later the Coliseum became the first working cinema in Aberdâr for five years.
- The year 1995 saw the completion of a large-scale extension to the original building, creating a larger foyer, new box office, bar/restaurant, new office accommodation and two function rooms. The extension was christened with a gala concert given by the Royal Opera House Chorus from the Covent Garden Opera House.
The unitary authority Rhondda Cynon Taf County Borough Council now owns and funds the Coliseum. The venue’s developing programme of events include drama, ballet, opera, comedy, light entertainment, music, children’s events, educational events, and productions by local community groups and schools.
The building has many unique features such as the unique friezes in the auditorium and the foyer. These friezes are plastercasts of brass wall plates that used to be displayed in the foyer at the Rex Cinema in Aberdare Town Centre.
The Stereophonics played The Coliseum before they were signed to a major record label – they come from Cwmaman , which is just up the road!
Other fantastic bands and variety of musicians and singers that have appeared at the venue include Cerys Matthews , Hothouse Flowers , Go West , Beth Nielson Chapman , Barbara Dickson , Gretchen Peters and Iris Williams .
A wide variety of comedians have graced the Coliseum’s stage, including:
Ricky Tomlinson , Rob Brydon (including filming the BBCTV documentary ‘Identity Crisis’), Paul Daniels , Jasper Carrot , Bobby Davro , Joe Pasquale , Frank Carson , Roy Walker, Rhod Gilbert, Russell kane, Mark Watson, Alan Davies and Danny La Rou .
Companies and actors also featuring at the venue include Welsh National Opera , Theatr Clwyd and Sian Phillips .