The Queen's Theatre on 'theatreland's' Shaftesbury Avenue was built as a pair with the Gielgud Theatre and opened in October 1907.
Designed by the infamous architect of his day, W G R Sprague, the theatres were stunning inside and out, until the Queen's Theatre felt the full force of a German bomb in a 1940 raid, destroying the facade and the theatre's glorious foyer.
For the following 20 years the theatre went through a dark period, mainly being used, if at all, as a rehearsal space.
The theatre was eventually refurbished and although the exterior is nothing like it was, the theatre reopened in July 1959 with its interior as stunning as the day it was first built.
The opening show saw John Gielgud's one-man performance of 'Ages of Man' (a selection of Shakespeare's speeches and sonnets) reap praise from critics and audiences alike. Prior to his reopening night performance, John Gielgud made his first West End appearance in 1929 at the Queen's in his infamous title role in 'Hamlet'.
Many other great actors have graced the Queens' stage such as Noel Coward in his final West End appearance in 'A Suite in Three Keys', Laurence Olivier in the National Theatre's production of 'Othello' and the saucy Marlene Dietrich tantalised audiences with two cabaret performances.
The Queen's Theatre is known for presenting relatively short runs and productions housed by the theatre include Jeffrey Archer's first play 'Beyond Reasonable Doubt' opening in 1987, the award winning tear-jerker 'Shawdowland' in 1989, 1990 saw the theatre make theatrical history when sisters Vanessa and Lynn Redgrave, along with niece Jemma, performed 'Three Sisters', Australian made 'Hot Shoe Shuffle' sang and danced its way along the stage from March 1994 and The Royal Shakespeare Company presented 'The Tamer Tamed' in repertory with 'The Taming of the Shrew' in 2004.
The current production at the Queen's Theatre is the theatrical masterpiece 'Les Miserables' which transferred from the Palace Theatre in April 2004, shortly after celebrating its 18th birthday.
Piccadilly Circus underground station is the closest to the Queens Theatre.
When purchasing tickets for mainstream theatre productions, it is important to keep the following in mind.
The cheapest way to buy tickets is to buy directly from the theatres´ box office where the show is playing. Or, purchase your tickets from the ´Half Price Ticket Booth´ (AKA ´tkts´) located in Leicester Square, where they sell ´on the day´ tickets for all of the West End shows at a discount rate.
The booth is open Monday to Saturday from 10am - 7pm and Sundays from 12pm - 3.30pm. There is a maximum of 4 tickets per person. Avoid touts hanging about the theatres and any other ticket agencies around the West End that appear a little dodgy as tickets may not be legitimate. Always ask if your seat is in a restricted viewing area. You can also purchase a theatre and hotel package which saves money all round. However, the best thing to do if you have your heart set on seeing a particular show is to book ahead. You will be guaranteed a good seat, a great view and a fab night out.
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|HOTEL / APARTMENT||POSTCODE||MILES||STAR||13 Dec||14 Dec||15 Dec||16 Dec||17 Dec||18 Dec||19 Dec||20 Dec|
|Piccadilly Circus Station||1||Bakerloo - Piccadilly||0.22 miles|
|Leicester Square Station||1||Piccadilly - Northern||0.27 miles|
|Tottenham Court Road Station||1||Central - Northern||0.50 miles|
|Covent Garden Station||1||Piccadilly||0.58 miles|
|Charing Cross Station||1||Bakerloo - Northern||0.65 miles|
|Charing Cross London Station||0.69 miles|
|London Waterloo International Station||1.56 miles|
|London Waterloo Station||1.68 miles|
|London Waterloo East Station||1.77 miles|
|London Euston Station||1.87 miles|