BBC Music Magazine

Venue of the month

The UK’S best concert halls


15. Theatr Clwyd Where: Mold

Opened: 1976

Seats: 570

Had original plans come to fruition, the town of Mold in north-east Wales would today be the proud home of a 1,400-seat concert hall. Finances were tight in the mid-1970s, however, and the vision for Theatr Clwyd was considerab­ly scaled down – when the Queen opened the new arts complex in 1976, it consisted instead of four smaller performanc­e spaces plus a cinema. HTV Wales had a TV studio there, but have since moved on.

The driving force behind the building of Theatr

Clwyd was Haydn Rees, chief executive of Flintshire County Council, who believed that the people of North Wales should enjoy cultural opportunit­ies to match those enjoyed in the south of the principali­ty and across the English border.

While the centre’s name has been tweaked over the years, it has remained a shining example as an innovative regional arts hub. Classical concerts are staged in the 570-seat Anthony Hopkins Theatre, named after the Welsh actor (and occasional composer). Visiting artists this season include violinist Tasmin Little, cellists Raphael Wallfisch and Sheku Kanneh-mason, and the Elias Quartet (see 2 December, right).

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