Gaiety Theatre Shimla is a prominent landmark of this city of Shimla which is located between The Mall Road and The Ridge. Originally, Gaiety Theatre Shimla was a part of old town hall complex of Shimla and it is an institution in itself. Gaiety Theatre Shimla personifies the cultural heritage of Shimla and Himachal Pradesh.
History Of Gaiety Theatre Shimla
History of Gaiety Theatre Shimla is an interesting one. It was designed by the renowned architect Henry Irwin, who also designed the ‘Viceregal Lodge’ of Shimla. Gaiety Theatre Shimla became functional from 30th May, 1887. Approximately after two decades of its construction, it was found that the building had some inherent defects, making it unsafe for human habitation.
In fact, the rocks used in order to construct this building were not found very strong in nature. Hence, the authorities decided to reconstruct the ‘Gaiety Theatre Shimla’, demolishing the top portion of the building.
Presently, readers, I am delighted to inform you that the remarkable ‘Gaiety Theatre Shimla’ has undergone a successful renovation without disturbing its basic form and style. Eventually, the Gaiety Theatre Shimla emerged as a base for all types of articles of artistic expressions for the countrymen and otherwise.
The luminaries who performed in the ‘Gaiety Theatre Shimla’ are the author Rudyard Kipling, actor Prithiviraj Kapur, legendary singer and actor K.L. Sehgal and the fine actors like Naseerudin Shah and Anupam Kher, to name a few. Gaiety Theatre Shimla is also well-known for its charming social club, which offers the people of Shimla and other visitors a chance to get together and rejuvenate each other.
Architectural Aspect Of Gaiety Theatre Shimla
Henry Irwin has designed ‘Gaiety Theatre Shimla’ in typical Gothic Style which represents renaissance in Europe, with its arches, ribbed vaults and flying buttresses. The building also personifies the Victorian aesthetic sensibilities. Gaiety Theater’s most coveted and special part is its ‘Old Theatre Hall’ which is equipped with the fine acoustics facility needed in the art of theatre. To put it in simpler language, acoustic facility implies that to be audible to the audience from the stage without microphone.
The major components of Shimla Gaiety Theatre’ are it ‘Art Gallery’ , ‘Old Theatre Hall’, ‘ Amphitheater’, ‘Seminar/Conference Hall’, ‘Multipurpose Hall’ and ‘Exhibition Hall’.
Gaiety Theatre Shimla Cultural Complex
Different constitutes of Gaiety Theatre Shimla have imparted in a unique completeness, hence it is aptly highlighted as Gaiety Heritage Cultural Complex. This complex has come up as vibrant center of all types of creative and performing arts; as for example – painting, photography, dance, drama, theatrics, elocution, sculpture and classical and folk music. At the same time the Gaiety Heritage Cultural Complex provides Shimla schools an opportunity to participate in the cultural activities organised here.
At present the Gaiety Heritage Cultural Complex Shimla has become an important destination for all the art lovers of Shimla and Himachal Pradesh at large. In the same manner as this complex also runs an ‘Amateur Dramatics Club’. Subsequently, it has become a gift to the theatre lovers of the country. Gaiety Heritage Cultural Complex Shimla is managed by ‘Gaiety Dramatic Society’.
The Chairperson of this society is none other than The Honorable Chief Minister of the state Himachal Pradesh. H.P. Govt. is publishing hard to promote and provide impetus to all theatrical, art and literary activities with a special eye on tribal cultural growth and development. Brief description of components of Gaiety Theatre Shimla:-
This gallery is attached to ‘Lalit Kala Academy New-Delhi’. It holds the exhibition of Nationally and Internationally renowned artist, highlighting modern and traditional art.
This is another Exhibition Hall, having display boards to exhibit paintings, sculptures, crafts and photographs of the people belonging to India.
Multi Purpose Hall
It has the seating arrangement of 450 people, with all the modern facilities for indoor cultural activities.
It is an open air theatre for enacting street plays small interaction and open air cultural programs with the sitting arrangement for 100 people.