UK – London – Trafalgar Theatre

Dates: 1930 – present

Formerly known as the Whitehall Theatre (until 2004) and as Trafalgar Studios (to 2021), the venue reopens as the Trafalgar Theatre in Spring 2021, with a restored single auditorium and new seating.

Official website: https://www.atgtickets.com/venues/trafalgar-theatre/

Designed by Edward Stone as a small art deco theatre. Became closely associated with farce, especially those starring and put on by Brian Rix which became known as the Whitehall Farces (1944-1967). The Grade II listed theatre was extensively refurbished in 1985 resulting in a capacity of 646, and in 2004 was divided into two studio theatres, in the same way many large cinemas were split into smaller screens. Studio 1 consisted of the upper circle seating, plus 4 additional rows built onto the front, along with a stage area built above the original stalls seating and part of the stage area. 
Studio 2 was built at the rear of the stalls, under the circle seating. 
The single venue layout was restored in 2021, along with the original art deco features, which had been covered over. 

Capacity
  • 2021 Auditorium: 630 seats
  • Former Trafalgar Studios: Studio 1 had 380 seats; Studio 2 had 100 seats

Past Productions

  • Jersey Boys (opening 28 July 2021)
  • 2020 – The venue was closed to re-establish a single auditorium with new seating, renamed Trafalgar Theatre
  • On Blueberry Hill (5 March – 2 May 2020)
  • A Taste of Honey (5 December 2019 – 29 February 2020) starring Jodie Prenger
  • Nine Night (from the National Theatre)
  • Misty (from the Bush Theatre)
  • Killer Joe () starring Orlando Bloom
  • The Grinning Man (2018)
  • Apologia, starring Stockard Channing, directed by Jamie Lloyd
  • Buried Child, starring Ed Harris
  • The Spoils, written by and starring Jesse Eisenberg (Studio 1)
  • The Maids, starring Uzo Aduba
  • The Homecoming (2015) directed by Jamie Lloyd
  • Oresteia (2015) directed by Robert Icke (Studio 1)
  • Golem ()
  • The Ruling Class () starring James McAvoy
  • East is East () starring Jane Horrocks
  • Richard III () starring Martin Freeman, directed by Jamie Lloyd (Trafalgar Transformed 2nd season)
  • Ghosts () starring Lesley Manville
  • The Pride () starring Hayley Attwell
  • The Hothouse () starring Simon Russell Beale and John Simm (Trafalgar Transformed)
  • Macbeth (2013) starring James McAvoy (Studio 1 – Trafalgar Transformed)
  • Othello, starring Lenny Henry
  • The Mountaintop
  • Entertaining Mr Sloane, starring Imelda Staunton and Matthew Horne
  • Riflemind directed by Philip Seymour Hoffman
  • A Night in November (starring Warren Mitchell)
  • Elling (starring John Simm and Adrian Bower)
  • African Snow
  • The Dumb Waiter (starring Lee Evans and Jason Isaacs) 50th Anniversary production of the play written by Harold Pinter
  • The New Statesman: Alan B’stard’s Extremely Secret Weapon (starring Rik Mayall)
  • Bent (starring Alan Cumming)
  • Gunpowder Season from the RSC
  • Shoot the Crow (starring James Nesbitt)
  • Losing Louis (starring Alison Steadman)
  • Simply Heavenly (transfer from The Young Vic)
  • Sweeney Todd (transfer from the Watermill Theatre) directed by John Doyle
  • Othello – Royal Shakespeare Company, starring Antony Sher as Iago
  • 2004 – Trafalgar Studios opened with two auditoria under a single roof, becoming the first theatre of its kind in the heart of London’s West End. Trafalgar Studio 1 had 380 seats & studio 2 had 100 seats. Studio 1 opened on 3 June 2004, and Studoi 2 opened October 2005. 
  • Rat Pack Confidential (18 September 2003 – 15 November 2003)
  • Abigail’s Party (to 12 July 2003) transferred from Ambassadors Theatre
  • Art (October 2001 – 4 January 2003) transferred from Wyndham’s Theatre
  • 1997 – 1999: The theatre was converted into a television & radio studio
  • Rampant in Whitehall – Les Patterson has a Stand Up (featuring Barry Humphries) (1996)
  • Journey’s End
  • A Tribute to the Blues Brothers
  • A Touch of Danger (1988) starring William Franklyn
  • Refurbished in 1985
  • Thoughts of Chairman Alf (January 17 1977 – ?) starring Warren Mitchell as Alf Garnett
  • ?date – Converted into a Museum ‘The Theatre of War’ by Paul Raymond, without planning permission
  • 1971 Porn magnate Paul Raymond buys the theatre lease
  • Pyjama Tops (1969 – 1974) Nude show
  • Whitehall Farces (1944-1967)
    • More details coming soon. See also Aldwych Farces
    • Come Spy With Me (June 1966) by Derek Malcolm, directed by Brian Blackburn
    • Chase Me Comrade (July 1964 – ?) starring Brian Rix
    • One for the Pot (August 1961 – July 1964) by Ray Cooney and Tony Hilton, starring Brian Rix in 4 parts, later John Slater
    • Simple Spymen (1958) by John Chapman, starring Brian Rix and Leo Franklyn
    • Dry Rot (August 31st 1954 -1958) by John Chapman, starring Brian Rix, Basil Lord, Leo Franklyn

 

Documents


Trafalgar Studios - Arthur Lloyd 
[External Website]
From Arthur Lloyd website

Trafalgar Studio 1 (photo by Ian Grundy) (October 2010)
[External Website]

Location


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