Even if you don’t end up seeing a play, the West End of London is one of the most popular tourist attractions in the city. With restaurants, cultural institutions and amazing attractions, Piccadilly, Shaftesbury Avenue, and Soho draw in millions of tourists a year. Whether you’re staying at a nearby hotel or indulging in one of the Piccadilly West Ends themed afternoon tea deals, the area is well worth your time, not least because of the many historic theatres in Piccadilly.
London is arguably the heart of Western theatre culture. With acting schools and hundreds of years of performance history, the city has grown to include countless theatres and sparked the career of some of the most famous actors and creatives working today. So, whether it’s to see a show or just to get a taste of the magical theatre designs, a trip to London’s West End Theatre could be one of the most magical experiences of your London trip.
Currently, the home of the Michael Jackson inspired Thriller Live show, the Lyric Theatre is a West End performance venue that was originally built in 188. As the oldest theatre still running on Shaftesbury Avenue, the CJ Phillips designed Rennaissance styled interior was originally intended for opera performances, but since the 1930s’ expanded its program to plays and musicals.
When you think of theatres of the West End, the Gielgud would probably fit the bill perfectly in its design and programming. With yearly stagings, the theatre has played host to Olivier Award-winning The Ferryman by Jez Butterworth, as well as the Bob Dylan penned Girl From the North Country. Soon, this lavish theatre will play host to the highly anticipated To Kill A Mockingbird adaptation starring Rhys Ifans.
Having opened in 1928, this gorgeous art deco styled theatre is one of the most popular in the West End. Located close to some of the best restaurants near Piccadilly, you can always expect a grand night out at this 1232 seated venue. Shows at the Piccadilly have included the critically acclaimed production of Death of a Salesman which ended at the beginning of this month, and will soon see the musical of Pretty Woman hit the stage in March of this year.
Prince of Wales Theatre
First opened in 1884, the Prince’s Theatre was a traditional Victorian theatre with three tiers. This design was eventually demolished and replaced with one created by a man named Robert Cromie in 1930. This theatre was built in the art deco style and has in the past been used as a cinema, having premiered Charlie Chaplin’s famous The Great Dictator in 1941. Located close to the Piccadilly London Hotel, Prince of Wales has since become one of the most popular in the city and is currently showing the award-winning musical The Book of Mormon, created by the writers of South Park.
Harold Pinter Theatre
The Harold Pinter Theatre is situated next to Leicester Square, close to some of the best London hotel deals special offers in the city. Named after one of the most famous English Playwrights of the 20th century, the Harold Pinter Theatre has been the host of modern classics and showstopping musicals, having originally been called the Comedy Theatre on its opening in 1881, the theatre was renamed after Pinter in honour of the writer’s death in 2011.