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Theatre Royal Drury Lane

#146 of 1,283 things to do in London
Certificate of Excellence
Covent Garden
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Address: Catherine Street | Covent Garden, London WC2B 5JF, England
Phone Number: 0844 412 4660
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Since 1663 the Theatre Royal Drury Lane has provided entertainment for...

Since 1663 the Theatre Royal Drury Lane has provided entertainment for the masses and has been visited by every monarch since the Restoration.The theatre has not one, but two, royal boxes and it was here that the public first heard both the National Anthem and Rule Britannia. Previous buildings were managed by the great actor David Garrick and the famous playwright Richard Brinsley Sheridan and he current, fourth, building was opened in 1812.The theatre was renowned for its spectacular Victorian melodramas and pantomimes but since the 1920s its history has mirrored the development of the modern musical. From the original London productions of American musicals Rose Marie, The Desert Song and Show Boat, through Ivor Novello’s romantic operettas and Rodgers and Hammerstein’s groundbreaking post-war shows to The Producers and The Lord of the Rings. My Fair Lady held the record as the theatres longest run for many years but Cameron Mackintosh’s record breaking production of Miss Saigon, at ten years, is the current record holder.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

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Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

The theatre is old and built when people were much shorter therefore there is very little leg room for anyone taller than 5 ft 5. We sat in the grand circle where the seats are... read more

4 of 5 starsReviewed 1 week ago
Sarah C
Stoke-on-Trent, England, United Kingdom

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English first
Level Contributor
20 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed 1 week ago

Theater was somewhat comfortable - clearly built when Brits were a much smaller people as the leg room is so uncomfortable. The production itself is a 'must skip' - sorry to say, the chap that plays the lead role surely isn't giving it his all. Sorry I actually wasted the time to see this production.

Thank JonnyMoosh
Stoke-on-Trent, England, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
5 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed 1 week ago

The theatre is old and built when people were much shorter therefore there is very little leg room for anyone taller than 5 ft 5. We sat in the grand circle where the seats are staggered and is quite steep but means you get a great view! There are plenty of booster cushions available for children, so do ask if... More 

Thank Sarah C
Falkirk, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
117 reviews
26 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 41 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed 1 week ago

An evening in the Royal circle to see Charlie and the chocolate factory should have been a dead cert for a good evening but I'm afraid a lot of things let it down. Entering the foyer was a little like being sieged by charity muggers with a horde of young people in t shirts flogging Wonka goods. Or at least... More 

Thank yorkiebard
Norwich, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
13 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

For my first time at a West end show, the theatre royal drury lane made it a night out to remember. The piped smell of chocolate as soon as you walk in really gets you ready for the show you are about to see. We had a box in the royal circle which really added to the experience and a... More 

Thank dannymarino
Sidcup, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
40 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 3 weeks ago

Sat in the Royal Circle, great views, Charlie & the chocolate factory. A fantastic show in a great theatre, full of history, take time to look about the theatre. Reasonable prices and very good staff.

Thank Martin N
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
715 reviews
445 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 256 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed 3 weeks ago

This theatre sits on the oldest theatre site in London still in use, so obviously has a lot of history. While the current building opened in 1812 (still making it older than a number of countries!) it's the fourth in the line of theatres that has stood here since the 1600s. It's a nice theatre though a somewhat confusing layout... More 

Thank KiaOraKiwi
Bath, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
88 reviews
47 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 4 weeks ago

I would sit in this theatre and enjoy the experience even of there was no show on the stage. There has been a theatre on this sight since the 17th century and somehow you can feel the history. The current theatre has been there since 1812 . It is a beautiful theatre and a delight to be there. I have... More 

Thank LondonChipper
Glendale, California
Level Contributor
521 reviews
127 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 277 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed 4 weeks ago

In July, my husband, step-kids ( 5&7) and I, saw "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory." We had never been to this theatre and tried our best to pick seats based off of internet reviews and charts. We ended up with a balcony box, which were mid-range price tickets. It was nice to have a box to ourselves, the kids really... More 

Thank Karen H
Castleford, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 5 weeks ago

I have been to see a few shows over the years but have to say that this one was amazing. The cast were all wonderful and very professional. The scenery and stage set up were brilliant and the special effects that brought this to life were mind blowing, in fact no amount of words could do it justice. This is... More 

Thank Paula E
Level Contributor
91 reviews
37 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 24, 2015

Went to see Charlie & the Chocolate Factory. Excellent show, excellent cast, excellent theatre with pleasant staff. Unfortunately we were sat in front of 2 children who despite being about 8 & 9 thought speaking at normal volume throughout the 1st half was perfectly acceptable. What was more annoying was that their parents obviously felt this way too. Despite the... More 

1 Thank Preston88

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Staying in Covent Garden

Neighborhood Profile
Covent Garden
Whether you're headed here to check out the multitude of shops, theaters, cafes, pubs, and restaurants, or simply to be among the multitude of people who pass through this pretty part of town, you'll love soaking up the festive and historic atmosphere in and around Covent Garden. Even if you don't have tickets to the opera or a show at one of the many famous theaters here, don't be surprised if find yourself captivated by some impromptu act of a street performer wowing the crowds in Covent Garden's Piazza. If you do have tickets, you'll be pleased to note that many of the local eateries accommodate theatergoers with prix fixe menus, early dinners, and later than usual opening hours. 

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