Max Boyce: It would be a ‘tragedy and betrayal’ if the Muni Arts Centre in …

Legendary entertainer Max Boyce has pledged his support for the ongoing effort to reopen the Muni Arts Centre, adding it would be a “tragedy” if it remained closed for good.

The iconic Pontypridd venue on Gelliwastad Road closed last year in council service cuts, but The Muni Working Group – including representatives from Pontypridd Town Council, Cylch Cymreig, Artis Community, Coalfields Regeneration and the YMCA – agreed in November 2014 to lease the building.

‘A place where performers can perform’

In May this year, the group confirmed its plans to launch a full programme of events during early 2016 are still on course, and they will aim to complement new proposals for a £6m revamp of the Pontypridd YMCA.

Speaking ahead of his six-stop autumn tour which kicks off at Aberdare’s Coliseum Theatre on September 4, Welsh icon Max has wished the group every success.

Max Boyce
Max Boyce

The star was vocal in his sadness about the Muni’s closure when it was confirmed in May 2014.

Max said: “Venues like the Muni are so important for two reasons – it is a place where people can go as members of the audience, and it’s a place where performers can perform.

‘A tragedy’ to lose the Muni

“It’s a place where they can play and learn their craft – they don’t have to go to London. But it’s also part of our heritage to be able to go to the theatre.

“It would be a tragedy if that theatre is no longer there.”

The Muni arts centre in Pontypridd

The Welsh music legend added he understands cutbacks need to be made, but also pioneered the importance of local theatres which have played a large role in the history of valleys communities.

Speaking about the Muni Working Group’s efforts, Max added: “I support them and wish them well. They will really need the support of the people of Ponty.

‘A betrayal of the valleys’

“I don’t know about the Muni, but with the Park and Dare Theatre in Treorchy, money went from miners’ pay into the venue.

“It would be a betrayal of the valleys if the theatres no longer existed.”

Max will also perform at Porthcawl, Brecon, Maesteg, Telford and Swansea in five dates from September 11 to October 8.

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