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A traditional Glasgow music hall in the city centre, the Panoptican is a great find. Situated at 115 Trongate, just above an amusements arcade, the Panoptican is quite literally a hidden gem - it was only recently discovered, and featured on a BBC programme called Restoration. The theatre itself is accessed through a back door in the lane at the side of the arcade. Inside, it is pretty much as it was left, although now in a poor state of repair.
First opened in 1857, it is extremely eerie, housing as it does the discarded and forgotten possessions of its former regulars. It also displays posters from old shows, and some information regarding its previous performers, Stan Laurel one of the most famous. The Panoptican is by no means a museum as yet, and is not a venue in which you should expect to see a lot, since it is in the process of being restored and renovated. As such, there are no particular opening times. However, from time to time actors dress up in traditional music hall costumes and have a small show in which visitors are treated to music hall numbers and a bit of history about the theatre. If you are passing, it’s definitely worth a look.
For information about visting the theatre, call 0141 553 0840.