Re­gent Cafe adds lus­tre to Broad­way

The Tribune (NZ) - - ENJOY -

The Re­gent cafe and bar is open for busi­ness.

The Re­gent on Broad­way wel­comes ca­pac­ity au­di­ences to its pro­duc­tions but some­times there’s a prob­lem with con­ges­tion in the foyer. In open­ing up its Cen­trePort and Mez­za­nine Bars, the Re­gent has been able to spread au­di­ence num­bers at­tend­ing lo­cal and vis­it­ing shows.

How­ever, in ac­knowl­edg­ing an oc­ca­sional prob­lem, Re­gent Man­ager Charles Forbes and its board have thought cre­atively. When the shop next to the the­atre be­came avail­able, the Re­gent ne­go­ti­ated with Palmer­ston North City Coun­cil to use the space.

‘‘The space’’ has be­come the in­ti­mate and at­trac­tive cafe and bar which was com­pleted this month and open in time for the 50th Manawatu Jazz Fes­ti­val this weekend.

The cafe, with en­trances on to Broad­way and the Re­gent foyer, pro­vides an ideal op­por­tu­nity for peo­ple to so­cialise prior to a show or en­joy re­fresh­ments at in­ter­val.

Staffed by the Friends of the Re­gent, it will be open an hour be­fore ma­jor per­for­mances of­fer­ing a choice of wine, beer and snacks.

‘‘The cafe, yet to be named, has stools so peo­ple can come and sit and so­cialise be­fore at­tend­ing a pro­duc­tion in the the­atre,’’ Charles says.

‘‘Lo­cated along­side the en­trance to the Re­gent, it al­lows a greater spread of peo­ple at­tend­ing a show.’’

Charles has long be­lieved that many the­atre-go­ers treat a night out as an event rather than just turn­ing up for a per­for­mance. The event could be din­ner out or so­cial­is­ing with friends be­fore ex­pe­ri­enc­ing the magic of what the Re­gent of­fers.

‘‘Our cafe adds to that mix of mak­ing a night out a spe­cial oc­ca­sion,’’ Charles ex­plains.

The Re­gent has tar­geted the mile­stone of the jazz fes­ti­val as the mo­ment when the cafe is of­fi­cially opened. The cafe joins other venues around Palmer­ston North this weekend to cel­e­brate the fes­ti­val with its own jazz mu­si­cians.

The Broad­way Ra­di­ol­ogy cafe scene, launched in 2010, has be­come an in­te­gral part of the fes­ti­val and en­ables lo­cal and vis­it­ing jazz groups to pro­vide free en­ter­tain­ment for peo­ple at a num­ber of lo­ca­tions around the city.

More than 100 mu­si­cians are play­ing 37 gigs in 19 venues and the Re­gent cafe is one of them.

It will be open from 8am-3pm this Satur­day and Charles in­vites peo­ple to en­joy the hos­pi­tal­ity of the cafe and listen to some su­perb mu­sic be­fore the Jazz Gala event in the the­atre that night.

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