Increasing rehearsal and performance
spaces by 3,950 square metres.


Dear Fellow Liobian,

Memories of school days vary enormously, but for us (and we hope for you), the Institute was special.

You know what happened to the school after we left. Thanks to Paul's generosity and grants from private and public bodies, the building has been completely and wonderfully transformed. The enclosed prospectus will give you some idea. If you want to see what's happened, just contact LIPA for a wander round. It's magnificent.

Actually, the reincarnation of The Institute would have been impossible without Paul, who wanted to restore the building, and Mark (Featherstone-Witty) who wanted a place to provide a unique curriculum and still is the Principal. The challenge was to devise a curriculum that maximised sustained work for careers were and still are notoriously short lived. The main idea was to balance specific vocational performing arts skills with a generic curriculum, which all undergraduates would experience, regardless of their discipline.

Has the curriculum worked? Every year former graduates are contacted three years after they left. During the recent Graduation, which we both attended, we learnt that 96% of the graduates found (87%) were in work. That is in impressive result by any measure.

Other highlights worth mentioning is that the revitalised Inny is hugely popular - 28 people apply for every place, has the highest proportion of international students of any UK performing arts higher education institution and has industry professionals from everywhere in the UK (136 last year) visiting to share their experience and expertise. LIPA is definitely on the landscape.

Seventeen years after opening, LIPA is now at capacity; some spaces are used 97% of the time. These space need to supplemented, partly to cope with demand, but also to permit expansion. New facilities (especially performance and rehearsal spaces) are a current need.

With extraordinary timing, No 68 Hope Street, the former Liverpool School of Art came on the market recently and LIPA has bought it with money from its own reserves (this says all you need to know about LIPA's robust enterprise and financial management).

There is a degree of romance attached to this purchase. After all, the School of Art grew out of The Liverpool Institute, so, for the second time and now for all time, the buildings have been united for their original purpose: learning.

The next task is to renovate and adapt this handsome building.

Mark has asked us if we can encourage support from Liobians. Being proud of our heritage and knowing what has already been achieved since the school closed, we are anxious to do what we can.

We hope you are too.

Steve Norris, Head Boy 1962 - 1963 Peter Sissons, Head Boy 1960 - 1961
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