New Performing Arts Library Open in Wigan

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Performing Arts Library

A new performing arts library has opened in Wigan Life Centre – the first of its kind in the North West.  

The Academy of Live and Recorded Arts (ALRA) has made a generous donation to Wigan Council of 40,000 play and theatre scripts and reference materials to the council’s library service. 

The collection, which is housed in Wigan Library in Wigan Life Centre, was officially opened this week and although only available for reference purposes at the moment, the library do have future plans to lend out items to the public once all of the materials have been fully catalogued. 

Councillor Chris Ready, cabinet member for communities, whose portfolio covers the borough’s libraries said: “This is a fantastic addition to the borough’s library service and we are excited for the public to have the opportunity to have access to a range of scripts and other performing arts materials.

“We’re the first library service in the North West to have a performing arts library as many of those currently in operation are in the South. This is a fantastic resource for students across the North to benefit from as they can come to Wigan and use our materials to support their studies.”


Scripts from plays, musicals, pantomimes and book adaptions by well-known writers such as Shakespeare, David Wood, Agatha Christie and others are featured in the collection. 

ALRA is a drama school with bases in London and Trencherfield Mill, Wigan. The academy specialises in high-quality training in acting and directing. Training delivered by ALRA covers acting for camera, movement, voice, TV presenting, radio and much more. 

The academy is also in talks with Wigan Council’s library service to deliver a programme of children’s storytelling events in library venues across the borough, which will allow students to practise and share their learned techniques. Rolled out from autumn, the events will be free of charge and will be listed on the council’s website. 

Sign up to your local library for free to get unlimited access to e-magazines, books, talking books and more. Visit www.wigan.gov.uk/libraries.