UK – London – Palladium

Dates: 1910 – present

Official website:

Venue capacity: 2300 (Stalls, 1000; Royal Circle, 600)

One of the most famous variety venues in the world, the Palladium has been open and showcasing the finest acts and shows for over 100 years.


Argyll House is constructed on what is now Argyll Street.

The theatre was rebuilt by Frederick Hengler, and renamed the ‘Grand Cirque’; a circus venue that included an aquatic display in a flooded ring.

The venue becomes the National Skating Palace, and features a rink of real ice.
However, this venture failed, leading to the interior being redesigned by Frank Matcham.

1910 December 26
The London Palladium opens

Broadcasts of Sunday Night at the London Palladium begin. The theatre is re-equipped with new stage lighting systems to satisfy the requirements of 1950s TV technology. 

1960 September
The London Palladium is Grade II listed by English Heritage.

The Palladium is acquired by Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Really Useful Group

Selection of Productions

Stage Technology

Drum Revolve

This mechanism consisted of three separate revolving drums. The outer ring was able to revolve independently of the narrower centre rings, and both sections could be elevated above stage level. It was heavily used in the 1991 production of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat.

The famous drum-revolve mechanism was finally removed in January 2002, immediately after The King and I closed, to make way for the hydraulic mechanism for the Chitty Chitty Bang Bang car.

Official Website:

Cinderella at the London Palladium as seen in 1966 (British Pathe)

Cinderella at the London Palladium as seen in 1926 (British Pathe)

Royal Variety Performance in 1969 (British Pathe)

Archive equipment related to London Palladium over the years

  • Light Console (Strand)
  • Imagine (Arri)
  • Documents

    London Palladium - Arthur Lloyd 
    [External Website]
    From Arthur Lloyd website
    Hilary Gould at the Light Console at the Palladium (c) Alan Ashton
    Hilary Gould at the Light Console at the Palladium (c) Alan Ashton (1942)
    Click on thumbnail to enlarge
    [33kb  JPEG]
    From Alan Ashton Collection

    LSI: Oliver (January 1995)
    [6.71Mb PDF]
    From Lighting & Sound International

    LSI: Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (May 2002)
    [3.57Mb PDF]
    From Lighting & Sound International

    LSI - The Wizard of Oz (April 2011)
    [4.4Mb PDF]
    From Lighting & Sound International

    Mentions of London Palladium in indexed journals


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