At A Glance
The Archives collects, preserves, and provides access to the documentary history of Medicine Hat and area. This includes manuscript records, an extensive photograph collection, maps and other technical drawings, as well as sound recordings and moving images. With aid of our professional staff, the public can utilize these holdings to learn more about their own history and that of their community. The Archives also receives requests and researchers from across Canada and around the world. Please browse our on-line databases, available through this website or phone for an appointment.
The Art Gallery acts as a dynamic doorway for the visual arts between Medicine Hat and the world, through exhibitions, programming and collections. Every year, we present ten to twelve exhibitions of contemporary and historical art by local, provincial, national and international artists in the Art Gallery’s 3000 square foot exhibition space. The exhibitions are enriched and animated by a wide range of public programs for all ages, including talks, workshops, tours and classes. The Art Gallery also develops and maintains the Permanent Collection of Art, a unique repository of regionally significant visual arts, supplemented by national and international works. Through all of its many activities, the Art Gallery sparks imagination and creativity, supporting, animating and developing the visual arts for our community, and beyond.
The Discovery Centre is located on the second floor of the Esplanade. The room is bright and airy with floor to ceiling windows along the entire west side. Multi-purposed, this versatile space is best suited for use as a children’s activities area, storytelling venue, or workshop space. The Discovery Centre is used in the summer for art camps Monday through Friday during the day and often throughout the school year for school programs. It is also home to the Esplanauts (children ages 6-9, 10-13) art classes and Against the Grain (youth 14-18) art classes.
On Discovery Days families are invited to further engage with the exhibits or ideas presented by the art gallery, museum, archives or theatre through fun, memorable, arts activities in the Discovery Centre.
The vision of the Esplanade Arts and Heritage Centre is to connect everyone with Arts and Heritage. This is accomplished though a diversity of programs and by bringing together cultural professionals and diverse audiences. The Education program plays a major role in developing, coordinating, and delivering this diversity of programs in collaboration with the Museum, Archives, Art Gallery and Theatre. The goals of the Education program include enhancing visitors experience and understanding of the exhibitions, providing a wide range of learning opportunities, increasing accessibility of the Esplanade and encouraging the use of the Esplanade and its collections by schools, youth and community groups.
The Esplanade Museum is a true community museum. Now entering its sixty-fifth year, it began as a project of the Historical Society of Medicine Hat and District. The Museum exists to arouse, enhance and encourage an appreciation of the development of the community with citizens and visitors as a place to live, work and do business.
The 700-seat Esplanade Theatre is a magical place. The state-of-the-art acoustic design, orchestra lift, and large stage are capable of accommodating a variety of musical or theatrical performances. Features include a full fly tower, orchestra pit, under floor traps, sound and lighting control booth, box office, plus a “quiet” room that affords a full view of the stage. The theatre will also function as a facility for conferences, graduation ceremonies, community events, and large-scale presentations or lectures.
Located directly across the luxurious Esplanade lobby, the Studio Theatre provides a smaller venue for performing arts productions catered to a more intimate setting. Also a great rehearsal space, the Studio Theatre is equipped with sound and lighting to accommodate theatrical, music or dance events for up to 140 people. Tables and chairs could be set up for an informal presentation, reception or meeting.