BLOG : Get to know the Prince Of Wales Theatre London
Monday 09 July 2012
The Prince Of Wales Theatre London is one of seven theatres owned by Delfont Mackintosh, the company started by Sir Cameron Mackintosh and Lord Bernard Delfont. Lord Delfont already owned the Prince Edward Theatre and The Prince of Wales and in 1990, Lord Delfont approached Mackintosh about acquiring these theatres as he felt that Mackintosh shared his passion about their future. He agreed to the partnership upon the condition that there would be a commitment to major renovation and refurbishment of the theatres. That was agreed and both theatres have been beautifully restored.
Since then Cameron Mackintosh has steadily added to his ownership of theatres. Delfont Mackintosh Theatres now has seven theatres (five freeholds and two very long leases). Beginning with the Prince Edward and Prince of Wales, the next theatre was the newly named Novello Theatre in December 2005 in recognition of actor and composer Ivor Novello who lived in a flat above the theatre. The newly named Noel Coward and Wyndhams Theatres have been managed by Delfont Mackintosh since 19 September 2005 and the Gielgud joined the Queens as a Delfont Mackintosh Theatre on 25 March 2006. The fully renovated Prince of Wales Theatre reopened on 27 May 2004 with Mamma Mia! It underwent a £7.5 million refurbishment programme to give the West End one of its most stylish, spacious and comfortable theatres. It was officially reopened by the Prince of Wales on 10 June 2004 when he attended a Gala performance of Mamma Mia! in aid of the Prince's Trust.
It is worth arriving early for an evening performance to take a look around the beautifully renovated theatre. There is a lovely sculpture in the main entrance in commeration of the opening and posters of previous successful shows as well as taking in the decoration of art deco mirrors and sculptures.
The theatre does more than just stage Mamma Mia. The venue holds a wedding license with the theatre and foyer spaces being available on Sundays and in the day for functions such as weddings, training seminars, meetings and concerts. There are also VIP areas for hire. Holding up to 350 is the The Delfont Room, The Follies Room for up to 100 people, The Princes Room for up to 70 people and the smallest for up to 50 people is the The Piano Room. When at the theatre the venue has two bars, one located in the Dress Circle area called The American Bar and one accessible by lift in the Stalls called The Delfont Room (also with a stage for any live entertainment may take place after the show) and if you have the misfortune to arrive late both bars have tv screens showing the show.
The theatre seats 1,125 people for the current production of Mamma Mia and is air-conditioned. It also has excellent facilities for the hard of hearing or anybody in a wheel chair. There is a dog sitting service if you have a Guide Dog. The theatre also has a free cloakroom available on the lower floor for coats and luggage if you are travelling.
The Prince of Wales Theatre London is one of the best located theatres in the West End near to Piccadilly Circus on Coventry Street. The nearest tube is Piccadilly Circus or Charing Cross Station if coming in by train. There is also parking on Whitcomb Street. However, although this is the nearest car park to the The Prince of Wales Theatre it does not partipate in the Theatreland Parking Scheme. The nearest ones that do offer a 50% discount on your parking ticket when you get it validated at the box office is in Trafalgar Square or Newport Place, China Town.
Mamma Mia will be moving over to the Novello Theatre this coming September to make way for Let It Be, which celebrates British supergoup The Beatles. That runs until at the Prince Of Wales Theatre London until 19th January until Broadway smash The Book Of Mormon opens in the venue.
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