179 BUCHANAN STREET, FORMER ATHENAEUM THEATRE (Ref:33004)
This building is in the Glasgow Council and the
It is a category A building and was listed on 06/07/1966.
Group Items: N/A,
Group Cat: N/A,
Map Ref: NS 5903 6556.
Sir J J Burnet and J A Campbell, 1891-3. Eclectic with Renaissance detail, pioneer vertical (elevator) building. 5 storeys and basement, 3 main bays. Ashlar, channelled at ground floor, metal window frames. Narrow gabled northern stair tower. Broad doorway with mannerist
window above. 1st floor canted balustraded balcony; above full-height (interrupted by small pedimented window) thin pilaster strips between clasping octagonal piers, rising to small turret; irregular fenestration; some steps between pilaster strips; cornice; octagonal
"Tower of the Winds" cupola.
Gabled section to S, 2 windows to ground floor. Giant arched central recess rising from 1st to 4th floor; 2nd and 3rd floor windows canted, 1st and 2nd set into metal frames, 3rd floor stone window, corbelled with central aediculed window, balcony above; octagonal piers at outer ends of balcony supporting seated sculpted figures. 4th floor window set under wide, keystoned arch, aedicule with sculpted figure in niche at gable apex; turret at southern angle similar to that of stair tower.
INTERIOR: squat-columned theatre interior survives, including seating, simple proscenium. Wrought-iron lift shaft.
An important work by the celebrated architects J J Burnet and J A Campbell, the former Athenaeum Theatre was built in 1891-3. The Dictionary of Scottish Architects notes that this was a pioneering 'elevator' style building where height made the most of the narrow Glasgow plot.
It was purpose-built to train drama students and contained a theatre, billiard room, dining room and gymnasium.
References from previous list description: B Oct 21 1893. Doak (ed) 1977 No 126. D Walker in A Service (ed), 'Edwardian Architecture and its origins 1975'. S R Archives, D of G 1/1072
Gomme and Walker, 1968 pp 204-5, 210, 255.
List description updated as part of the Theatres Thematic Study 2010.
2nd edition Ordnance Survey map (1892-7); Williamson et al, The Buildings of Scotland - Glasgow (1990) p249. Dictionary of Scottish Architects, www.scottisharchitects.org.uk (accessed 22 March 2010).
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