In fact, the New Wimbledon Theatre stands prominently on Wimbledon’s Broadway on its Grade II listed Edwardian built theatre building. Originally built by the theatre entrepreneur J B Mulholland between 1908-1910. And designed by the famous British theatre architect Cecil Aubrey Massey. The New Wimbledon Theatre is the 8th largest theatre in London. It is with a capacity of 1670 seats, following other important venues such as The Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, The English National Opera London Coliseum, and other venues like the Palladium and The Apollo. The New Wimbledon Theatre opened its doors for the first time on the 26th December 1910 with the famous pantomime by Bob Heather and Cheryl Barrett, “Jack & Jill”.
Between the two world wars, the theatre became a favourite of the London scene. By featuring many of the most prominent actors and play writes works, among others; Gracie Fields, Noel Coward, Ivor Novello all performed at the theatre. So, the theatre also holds the distinction as the venue which featured the world premiere of Oliver! The famous musical by Lionel Bart.
The New Wimbledon Theatre building features some unique characteristics in its construction, in addition to its Baroque and Adamesque for example, it is the only theatre in Britain to have been built with its own Victorian style Turkish baths in the basement.
Another interesting fact unbeknownst to many locals, is the prominent statue standing at the top of the theatre dome, locally known as “The Angel”. But it is actually not an angel. In fact Laetitia is The Roman Goddess of Gaiety. The statue was removed during WWII. Because it was thought it could be used to guide German planes. Then it was replaced to its original location on top of the dome in 1991.
In addition, the theatre also features The Black Box space of The New Wimbledon Studio adjacent area, a smaller 80 seat space used for smaller productions, and a popular venue for pre-West End production runs. So, the New Wimbledon Theatre is served well by Rail, Tramlink and Tube stations, all within a short walk distance from Local Plumbing Company Wimbledon.
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