This book is the first in-depth biography of the leading Victorian theatre architect Charles Phipps. His designs dislodged the Victorian theatre from its dependence on the Georgian playhouse and ushered in a new modernity utilising the latest technology in lighting, stage machinery and building construction and his work was a major influence on younger architects, notably Frank Matcham. The book traces Phipps’s colourful career and his, often fraught, relationships with clients, as well as his attitude to changing safety regulations and those who attempted to enforce them. The book also re-examines the Exeter Theatre fire and its aftermath, which reverberated throughout the country, and how Phipps managed to cling on to his career before returning with new ideas in his last years.
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