New 1,500 seat theatre experience to be created at Birrarung Marr

The Australian premiere of the much-loved theatrical experience Peter Pan – The 360° Adventure will be housed in Australia’s newest entertainment venue, the Impresario Hippodrome

The Impresario Hippodrome at Birrarung Marr is a brand new 1500 seat, air-conditioned, theatre-in-the-round with no seat more than 20 metres from the stage.   

The idea to develop the Hippodrome came about when producers were struggling to find venue space following a turbulent two years for theatrical producers and venues. 

“When all the theatres closed due to covid it created a tremendous log jam of huge, long-running shows all vying for dates as theatres started to reopen. We all know we have a shortage of theatres so, what do you do? It’s a daunting task but the answer for us was to create our own venue,” explains Peter Pan – The 360° Adventure Producer Craig Donnell.

“We looked at some of the great semi-permanent theatres that have been used so effectively around the world and set to work to develop that technology for Australia.  The Hippodrome is a spectacular theatre space with new technologies never before seen in Australia. With only 15 rows of newly upholstered seating, everyone in the audience sits up close to the action in air-conditioned comfort.  Actors faces tell the story, in traditional theatres, unless you sit at the front you often can’t see all the action. In the Hippodrome, the back row still affords the most magnificent experience!  I guarantee gasps and cheers will fill the Hippodrome as the cast fly overhead somersaulting their way high above Edwardian London to the magical kingdom of Neverland,” said Mr Donnell. 

“Importantly, with a new venue we are creating over 200 new jobs for local arts and entertainment workers plus associated industries and suppliers after such a heart-breaking period for our industry,” he added.

The Hippodrome houses an Australian-first experience with over 1,000 square metres of 360-degree high resolution digital scenic projections – about the size of three IMAX screens – and Computer Generated Image (CGI) effects to create a spectacular technological backdrop to tell the ever-popular Peter Pan story.

A massive external frame holds the Hippodrome up at around 30.5m at the peak and a 12-metre wide stage custom-built for the Hippodrome includes all the technical wizardry you’d expect in a standard theatre including automation, trap doors, revolves, staircases, flying apparatus, death-defying aerials, state of the art sound, lighting, projection and special effects. 

About Peter Pan The 360° Adventure

Loved by more than 1,600,000 people in the US and the UK, Peter Pan – The 360° Adventure, is a major new theatrical production for Australia and is set to be one of the highlight events for Melbourne when it opens in June 2022. 

Peter Pan The 360° Adventure is an Australian-first experience featuring high resolution digital scenic projections and Computer Generated Image (CGI) effects to create a spectacular technological backdrop to tell the much-loved Peter Pan story. 

The cast perform elaborate aerial feats against this backdrop to give the audience a bird’s eye view of flying over the rooftops of Edwardian London to the magical kingdom of Neverland. With an original soundtrack written by celebrated composer Benjamin Wallfisch and recorded by members of the London Symphony Orchestra, the experience has been described as like living in Pixar film or a spectacular video game. 

Peter Pan The 360° Adventure will be directed by celebrated Australian creative Craig Ilott and presented in Australia by Craig Donnell for Impresario Productions in association with The Estate of John and Barbara Gilbert and Matthew Churchill Limited. 

Casting details and further performance locations will be announced in the coming months.

“Thanks to this wonderful production, I now believe in fairies”  

Russell Brand 

“It feels, thrillingly, as if we are flying with them”

Daily Telegraph (UK)

“It’s like living in a Pixar film or a spectacular video game”

Wall Street Journal

“Spectacle and aerial acrobatics to compete with any Cirque show”

LA Times


Russell Crowe

“An absolutely magical production”

Ben Elton
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