Royal Opera House - Covent Garden London This impressive building in the heart of Covent Garden has been playing host to major stars of the classical music world since The third theatre to be located on this site, today's Royal Opera House is the result of a reconstruction in the As one of London's most esteemed, iconic and beautiful performance venues, it's worth a visit even if you're not a ballet or opera fan. Before 1999 the theatre only opened its doors to ticket holders just before performances but today you can explore parts of the building for free during the day - the Paul Hamlyn Hall with its dramatic glass atrium is especially worth a peek.
Theatre Peckham In the heart of Borough, behind Southwark Town Hall, the Peckham Theatre offers theatre workshops especially aimed at children and young people in the borough. Their youth arts programme extends to workshops in dance, drama, musical theatre singing and circus skills. First set up in 1986 under the name New Peckham Varieties it then became the Magic Eye Theatre in It moved to its current location in October 2007 with the 158 seat theatre hosting a wide range of productions - staging approximately four plays per year - mixing professional actors with pupils from their workshops.
Puppet Theatre Barge For a completely different kind of theatre experience, hop on board the Puppet Theatre Barge. Launched in 1982, this floating puppet theatre has 50 seats and travels along the Thames giving performances in Richmond during the summer. The theatre spends the winter docked opposite number 35 Blomfield Road in Little Venice. To find where the boat is, check its website. Performances here are anything but typical.
Wyndham's Theatre Wyndham's Theatre opened in Charing Cross Road on 16 November 1899, and was owned by Charles Wyndham During the sixties and early seventies, stars such as Alec Guinness, Vanessa Redgrave and Diana Rigg all took to its stage. In 1972, Wyndham's was home to one of the biggest hits of the decade- Godspell.
Victoria Palace Theatre The Victoria Palace Theatre as we know it today was built in Many of its original features remain. The foyer has grey marble, gold mosaic,while the facade still has its grand canopy and cupola. This was followed by 'Annie' (1978) and 'High Society' (1987). In recent years, the Victoria Palace has been home to Grease and Billy Elliot.
Old Vic Theatre With the exception of The Globe, the Old Vic has had a greater influence on the history of drama than any theatre standing today. From Kevin Spacey and Judi Dench, the Vic has played host to generation after generation of stars since it opened its doors in To watch a play at the Old Vic is to become apart of theatrical history, and it is no wonder that the theatre has little trouble attracting the biggest stars of stage and film.
The Old Red Lion Theatre One of London's most famous fringe pub theatres, the Old Red Lion Theatre in Islington was founded in 1979 by Charlie Hanson and is a welcome home to various new and experimental dramatic work.. The place is also a popular pub for locals, especially students from the nearby City University. The Old Red Lion Theatre won the Dan Crawford Pub Theatre Award for 2006.
Shakespeare's Globe Theatre This replica of the Shakespeare's 16th century theatre, reconstructed just 200 yards from its original site, is the brainchild of American actor and director Sam Wanamaker. Shakespeare's Globe Theatre opened in Although it is not an exact replica, it is close, and plays are performed in the open-air, rain or shine. Visitors can also tour the theatre and spend time at the adjacent Shakespeare's Globe Exhibition.
Royal Court Theatre Dedicated to putting on new work and discovering new voices, the Royal Court Theatre was seen as 'the most important theatre in Europe'. In 1956 it staged John Osborne's Look Back in Anger - a landmark in modern British drama - and the Sloane Square theatre has continued to produce work of an equally high standard, with numerous productions making a successful transition to the West End.
Prince Edward Theatre The Prince Edward Theatre was designed by Edward Stone and opened in 1930 with a performance of the musical Rio Rita. Just a few years later, the space was converted into a dance and cabaret hall, and was renamed the London Casino. After a few more name changes, the building was turned back into a theatre, re- christened with its original name, and opened in 1978 with the world premiere of the smash hit Evita.
Polka Children's Theatre Opened in 1979, the Polka has two theatre spaces and is aimed at children aged 0 to 13. Everything from dramas and comedies are shown here, as well as adaptations of popular stories like We're Going on a Bear Hunt. Some of the works are aimed at children as young as 9 months old. The Polka offers plenty of family programs and as well as out-of-school clubs and summer schools.
Fortune Theatre This intimate theatre was built on the site of the old Albion Tavern, and opened in November The beginnings of the Fortune Theatre were anything but fortunate. The opening play, by Laurence Cowen, closed after two weeks. But in the 1960 the theatre fortunes began to change. Beyond the Fringe (1961) was shown at the Fortune Theatre, and it was a massive success, launching the careers of Jonathan Miller and Alan Bennett. Its other blockbuster hit has been Stephen Mallatratt The Woman in Black (1989), which has been performed at the theatre ever since.
The Little Angel Theatre The Little Angel Theatre was founded by John Wright in 1961 in a derelict temperance hall in Islington. Every type of puppet is used, and themes, styles and stories are drawn from a wide range of cultural traditions. The company tours throughout the UK and abroad and The Little Angel also has an extensive Education Programme, which works with schools and youth groups. On Saturdays, there is a Puppet Club and family fun days where children can make their own puppets and play with them.
Palace Theatre The towering Palace Theatre dominates Cambridge Circus. Five storeys of dark-red brick with octagonal towers on the top give it a looming aspect better suited to a court than a theatre. This sinister atmosphere is continued inside, with heavy blocks of marble, and Renaissance style arches in the foyer and stairwells.
Theatre Royal Stratford East Theatre Royal Stratford East opened in 1884 and became the home of the Theatre Workshop Company in Today the theatre has 450 seats and showcases new writing and ethnically diverse plays. Examples of transfers to the West End include Five Guys Named Moe and The Big Life. Whether or not you are watching a performance at the theatre, stop by the Bar, which is open even when there are no performances, and serves a Caribbean menu.
Criterion Theatre The tiny entrance of the Criterion Theatre is almost invisible among the massive advertisements, traffic and crowds of Piccadilly Circus. It has shown a wide variety of fare since it opened in 1974, including the first UK production of Beckett's Waiting for Godot (1955). Run for Your Wife outdid this with a seven year run in the 1980, and it recently played host to the Reduced Shakespeare Company, who performed their Complete Works of William Shakespeare more than 2000 times.