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Great Hall

Welcome to Great Hall at The Leys

Great Hall is our Performing Arts Centre, completed in September 2013 and officially opened by HRH the Earl of Wessex in January 2014.

At the heart of Great Hall is a professionally-equipped, multi-purpose teaching theatre, designed in collaboration with world-renowned theatre consultants Charcoalblue, set in a stylish and modern – yet traditional – proscenium format with wrap-around ‘circle’ balcony. The theatre has hosted many theatrical and music events for The Leys and the Cambridge community, ranging from ‘West End’ musicals to contemporary dance and baroque opera!

Great Hall is also the venue for school assemblies, and many lectures and other events for the School, as well as housing the Drama and Dance departments, and adjoining the school’s Science department with three laboratory classrooms under the same roof.

For Patrons:

The venue is located within The Leys’ 50-acre campus in Cambridge city centre. We are a short walk from several multi-storey and on-street car parks, and not far from Cambridge station. We are ideally placed for patrons to enjoy a drink or meal in town before coming to the theatre.

For more details, please see the ‘Visitor Information’ on our Box Office page.

Please note that Great Hall is not open to the public, except for publicised events by ticket, invitation or pre-booking only.

Great Hall at The Leys

Trumpington Road

For Hirers:

Great Hall is a modern, medium-sized theatre in the centre of Cambridge, suitable for a wide range of events including theatrical performances, opera, dance, music concerts, lectures, exhibitions, holiday courses, rehearsals and conferences.

The auditorium can seat a maximum of 337, complemented by a large foyer and extensive backstage space including dedicated dressing rooms and plenty of additional space for performers, props, costumes and scenery. Adjustable acoustic measures can adapt the theatre for spoken word or live music.

The main venue is supplemented by various other supporting rooms, including the Middleton Studio (60-seat ‘black box’ theatre space and rehearsal studio), Trumpington Gallery, Dance Studio and John Harding Drama Centre (2 large classrooms and another rehearsal studio).

Professional technical infrastructure and backstage facilities are provided, including ‘ladder-free’ access to high-level rigging positions over the stage and auditorium, motorised flying system, adjustable fore-stage/pit, modern LED stage lighting, large control room, dressing rooms and green room.

Read below for more information.

Theatre Hire

Great Hall is available to hire during Leys School holiday periods; offered to theatre users as a ‘dry hire’ venue, so you have plenty of flexibility and freedom to put on your production or event.

Our current and previous clients include Anglia Comedy, Supreme Dance Competition, Cambridge Theatre Company, Bodywork Dance & Bodywork Theatre School, Cambridge University Tap & Jazz Society (CUTAZZ), PQ Academy, Cambridge Handel Opera Company (CHOC), Theatre Tribe, Cambridge Summer Music Festival, KD Academy, Emil Dale School of Performing Arts, Cambridge Suzuki Young Musicians, Cambridgeshire Heidelberg Montpellier Youth Orchestra, and Cambridgeshire Holiday Orchestra.

All lettings are supported by our in-house Theatre and Events team. Our duty technician is always on hand to provide advice and assistance with our technical systems, plus we provide a duty manager for performances. We pride ourselves on the level of support offered in comparison to other dry-hire venues. We often receive positive feedback from organisers who have been impressed with our venue and our staff, particularly with the hands-on help we are able to provide when required. We always try to ‘go the extra mile’ to ensure that your event is a success.

We can provide basic stage lighting for concerts and other simple events, or your technical team will have full access to the majority of our stage lighting stock and technical equipment to use as you wish (see Technical Information). There are very few things for which we charge ‘extras’ so the hire price you agree beforehand is the final price you will pay.

We have also partnered with a local bar company to provide a theatre bar for your performance.

Everywhere was so clean and well presented for us to come in and make the space our own. The technical team were so helpful throughout our stay and nothing was too much trouble or effort, and it just made our lives so much easier and stress-free. We have had so many wonderful comments about the theatre and how beautiful and professional it was.
I'm consistently impressed by the way we are supported by the Leys, and just how friendly and helpful everyone is... (This is definitely not the norm in all venues!)


  • Flexible seating configurations, including retractable seating and adjustable fore-stage area (flat, stepped or thrust stage), to suit capacities from 129 to 337.
  • Auditorium designed for acoustic performance, plus adjustable acoustic curtains to suit drama or music.
  • Air-conditioned auditorium.
  • Large, bright foyer spaces, including Stalls and Circle bar areas, and Box Office.
  • Stage performance space of approx. 9.6M width x 8.5M depth.
  • Large backstage area, including vehicle ‘get-in’ dock, workshop, green room and 2 fully-accessible dressing rooms.
  • Additional changing rooms for 100+ performers.
  • ‘Ladder-free’ technical access to over-stage bridges and Tension Wire Grid over auditorium.
  • Motorised flying bars for suspension of scenery and equipment.
  • Spacious control room with ETC lighting console and Allen & Heath digital audio mixing console.
  • Basic lighting rig and sound system available for concerts and smaller events.
  • Large lantern stock, including modern LED fixtures for maximum flexibility and minimum energy consumption.
  • C. Bechstein D280 grand piano (available to hire for selected events at extra cost).
Availability and RatesContact Us

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