Richmond Theatre Tour
Tours of the Richmond Theatre lasts 60 minutes. They currently take place on Saturday mornings at 10:30am. Meeting in the foyer, you will take in the following areas of the theatre:
- -Exterior front façade
- -Main entrance foyer
- -Stalls bar
- -Onstage in the auditorium
- -Dress circle and boxes
- -Dress circle bar
- -Upper circle
Patrons will be guided by one or two tour guides who all have expert knowledge of the theatre. There will be plenty of opportunity to discuss parts of the theatre in depth and ask questions.
Duration: 1 hour
How to book: Tours of the Richmond Theatre can be booked online or by phone +44(0)844 871 7651. Early booking is advised but the theatre will still be able to sell tickets on the day if there are spaces available
Tour dates: Saturdays until 19th December 2015
Cost: £8.00 Standard and £5.00 Concessions
For further information abou the tours, please click here.
How to get there
Richmond Theatre is located close to public transport links to Richmond and can be easily accessed by train, bus or car. Waterloo Station is 20 minutes away and 15 minutes by London Underground. A number of bus routes run clost to the theatre as well.
Please see Richmond Theatre's website for further information
With over 48 theatres in the West End alone, London provides visitors with a wealth of diverse theatre architecture both new and old, from major playhouses to small music halls.
Other theatres in London that offer theatre tours are as follows:
Royal National Theatre
The Old Vic
Royal Opera House
Theatre Royal Drury Lane
Theatre Royal Haymarket
Richmond Theatre was designed by Frank Matcham who was considered the finest theatre architect of his generation. It took twelve months to build at a cost of £30,000 – a considerable sum of money at that time. The auditorium could seat 1246 and there were six private boxes. Nowadays we only have 4 boxes and seating capacity is 852. There was a steam generating plant supplying enough electricity for over 1000 lamps. Gas was only used for the emergency lighting and for ventilation using a ‘Sun Burner’ – a device situated above the chandelier in the auditorium ceiling which created heat to draw the stale air from the auditorium and out through large vents in the roof. The auditorium was designed using the cantilever principle which dispensed with the need of supporting pillars and thus of obscured views. The ornate ceiling has four large panels depicting scenes from Shakespeare’s King Lear, Romeo and Juliet, Hamlet and A Midsummer Night’s Dream. The whole interior was decorated in white, gold and terracotta with the draperies and seating in scarlet.
On the 14th September, 1899 two foundation stones were laid, one by Frank Matcham and the other by F.C. Mouflet on behalf of his wife, and these can be seen on either side of the main entrance. The Theatre was first called Theatre Royal and Opera House and opened to the public on Monday 18th September 1899, when Ben Greet and his company presented, ‘As You Like it’ The Theatre had a permanent orchestra of some 26 musicians under the direction of Alfred Mistowski who had composed an overture especially for the opening, and the prologue was spoken by Ben Greet and Norah Denny
In its 115 years it has hosted many great names such as Charlie Chaplin, Stan Laurel, Laurence Olivier, Alec Guinness, Dirk Borgarde, Peter Ustinov, Judi Dench, Kenneth Branagh and Ken Dodd to name but a handful.
Richmond is often used as a filming location with many film and TV credits.