Karen Kain. Jim Carrey. Janet Van De Graaff. Adam Brazier. Gordon Pinsent. Ted Dykstra. Eddie Izzard. Jackie Richardson. Jian Gomeshi. Martin Bragg. Fringe of Toronto Theatre Festival. Classical Theatre Projects. Bat Boy: The Musical. Evil Dead: The Musical. Spring Awakening tour auditions. Jersey Boys auditions.
These are just some of the individuals and companies who have graced the stages and studios of 736 Bathurst Street, home to the Randolph Academy. The Gothic revival building is a landmark, not only in the history of Toronto but also the heritage of theatre in Canada. Its reputation as a roadhouse for original Canadian productions is a testament to its history of innovation and opportunity that continues to this day.
Beautiful and functional, the building was profiled in 2009 by the Ontario Heritage Trust as a prime example of adaptive reuse of places of worship. 736 Bathurst boasts the historic Randolph Theatre (formerly the Bathurst Street Theatre), the intimate Annex Theatre, and several Studios, all of which are available for rental.
A Short History of 736 Bathurst
The current building was erected in 1888 by the congregation of the Bathurst Street Wesleyan Methodist Church. The cornerstone was laid by Sir John A. Macdonald, first Prime Minister of Canada. Over the years it inspired many church congregations, eventually becoming the Bathurst Street United Church. In the 1950s, facing a dwindling congregation, the building began to be rented out for concerts and plays. Increasingly the building became better known for its role as a theatre than for being a church. In 1985, the building became a permanent and well known theatre.
In March 2001, the Randolph Academy, which had outgrown its original Gloucester Street location, moved into 736 Bathurst Street.