The Royal Albert Hall in London is to re-open its Elgar Room as a new purpose-built performance space on Oct. 14.

The room has undergone a £1 million ($1.65 million) refurbishment that includes the installation of a state-of-the-art sound system, new lighting infrastructure and coloured LED ceiling panels, and the removal of the raised flooring to increase capacity to 350.

Images of artists such as John Lennon, Johnny Cash, Ella Fitzgerald and Frank Sinatra will line the walls in reference to the venue's rich music history.

Already the space has been booked for Sir Elton John and Monty Python's "Not the Messiah" after-show parties, a comedy night with Patrick Monahan and the next instalment of the emerging indie acts series, Hush, with Erik Hassle.

"For the first time since the Hall's opening in 1871 we have somewhere other that the main auditorium in which to host music and other events," said Jasper Hope, director of events at the Royal Albert Hall, in a statement. "The 350-capacity venue will allow the Hall to bring a different type of artist and audience to the building, and we look forward to having some exceptional events in the space."

The Elgar Room was most notably used as a training theatre for actors up to 1957, including Sir Laurence Olivier, Dame Judi Dench and Harold Pinter, and on Oct. 4 will host a reunion of the Central School of Speech and Drama alumni for a special pre-opening celebration of the venue.

Over 350 events are held in the 5,250-capacity Royal Albert Hall auditorium each year, attended by more than 1 million people. It is the only venue in history to host a bill boasting both the Beatles and Rolling Stones.

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