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The London Theatre Museum

Perfectly positioned in the heart of London's ´theatreland´, in the old flower market of the Covent Garden piazza, is the Theatre Museum - the National Museum of the Performing Arts.

Dedicated to promoting the national performing arts community, the museum's collection of theatrical memorabilia began in 1924 when the Victoria & Albert Museum in South Kensington accepted a gift of playbills, play-texts and programmes of the London Stage. In 1974, although still a branch of the V&A Museum, it became a separate entity and the Theatre Museum was formed, moving in 1987 to its specifically designed premises in the old flower market of the West End's Covent Garden.

The galleries within the museum are a true celebration of British performance art beginning with Shakespeare until the present day with collections such as the National Video Archive of Stage & Performance and over a million programmes, props, costumes, puppets, play texts and photographs as well as keeping a record of production companies, theatre buildings, individual performers, press clippings and anything else that you could possibly find theatrically relevant.

All aspects of performance art are recognised in the museum including ballet, theatre, music and dance. There are fascinating exhibitions to visit, activities, workshops, demonstrations and guided tours to take part in, cabaret-style shows to preview, art projects to explore and the museum offers educational programmes with study facilities; and all of it takes place in a very decadent, dramatic and truly theatrical setting.

The Theatre Museum is also available for venue hire - a stunning and unique location for receptions or corporate functions not wanting to be so corporate.

Located on Russell Street, the Theatre Museum is open Tuesday to Sunday from 10am to 6pm. Entry is FREE. The museum is within 5 minutes walking distance from Covent Garden underground station (Piccadilly line) and within 10 minutes of Leicester Square (Northern & Piccadilly lines), Charing Cross (Bakerloo, Northern and National Rail lines), Holborn (Piccadilly & Central lines), and Embankment (District, Circle, Northern, Bakerloo & National Rail lines).

If you are travelling by car there are several NCP parking stations within the area such as the Drury Lane NCP and Holborn NCP. On street parking is very limited and expensive.

There are also numerous bus routes that service The Strand and Aldwych from where you can walk to the museum in 5 minutes.

Covent Garden is located within the City of Westminster and it is great for shopping, eating, exploring and you'll be forever entertained by the street performers who are in the main square on a daily basis.

The Theatre Museum is nearby to many other great London attractions and theatres including the National Gallery, Trafalgar Square, the Photographers Gallery, the National Portrait Gallery, the Novello Theatre and its partner the Aldwych Theatre, the Duchess Theatre and the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane.

Related London Pages

Hotels in Covent Garden | West End Hotels


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Theatre Museum: Tube (underground)

Covent Garden Station1Piccadilly0.26 miles
Holborn Station1Central - Piccadilly0.44 miles
Temple Station1District - Circle line0.53 miles
Leicester Square Station1Piccadilly - Northern0.60 miles
Charing Cross Station1Bakerloo - Northern0.62 miles

Theatre Museum: Rail (overground)

Charing Cross London Station0.67 miles
London City Thameslink Station1.20 miles
London Waterloo International Station1.22 miles
London Blackfriars Station1.22 miles
London Waterloo East Station1.25 miles

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