Skip to content

Theatre Royal

Formerly known as Limerick City Vocational Education Committee (VEC)


30 Cecil St, LimerickGoogle MapsArrow
  • This mid 19th-century building was purchased by the Limerick Athenaeum Society, who constructed an adjacent public lecture hall and theatre, which also served as a school of art and a library.
  • The site was designed to both entertain and educate, with lectures and debates held by great thinkers such as Oscar Wilde, Isaac Butt and Maud Gonne, alongside theatrical performances.
  • In the early 20th century the theatre became the Athenaeum Permanent Picturedrome, and then the Royal Cinema, before then being reverted back to being a theatre (the Theatre Royal) in 1989.
  • In 1990 there was a fire that destroyed the interior of the building, requiring major restoration work. The reopened Theatre Royal went on to host some famous names in music such as The Cranberries, The Prodigy and The Corrs.
  • This building stayed true to its historic function, remaining a home to the ‘arts and wisdom’ for nearly 100 years until its dereliction in 1997.
  • This site was one of 19 listed venues for the 26th edition of EVA in 2002, curated by Apinan Poshyananda (b. 1956, Thailand) and titled Heroes + Holies.
  • Here Garreth Joyce (b. 1980, Ireland) exhibited Human Tremors (2002), a work for which he created his own signs depicting safety symbols. These were printed and displayed on the exterior of the vacant building.

Artwork presented at this venue

Garreth Joyce, Human Tremors, 2002.