As a reminder of what we are losing, I dug out this article I wrote for the Herald in 1997:
Thanks to a £3,385,000 lottery award, the biggest of its kind in Scotland, the St Andrews theatre is being demolished, and a completely new building going up in its place. The bulldozers are expected to arrive at the start of August. Next time a member of the public gets inside the town's only professional theatre space, it will be the autumn of 1999, when the old 174-seat auditorium will have been replaced by a 220-seater with back-stage facilities previously only dreamed of.
At the moment, the company is able to skimp by with four full-time staff, but there'll be no such economies with a big new building to run. The plan is that some costs will be offset against increased revenue from the bar and restaurant, but the experience of other theatres suggests that benefits and expenditure are impossible to estimate accurately. "Costs are likely to increase because we've got a more interesting space to work with, with more possibilities," says Alexander. "The Scottish Arts Council recognises that increased costs will be an issue, but it's making no promises."
Once back in Abbey Street, he aims to cater to a range of audiences - not only the holiday-makers who account for up to 70 per cent of his summer trade, and not only the typical subscription audience. Like many a disciple of the late Joan Knight, Alexander is a populist to the last, and he makes no apologies for giving people what they want.
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