Piccadilly Theatre

Theatre in/near Piccadilly Circus, existing between 1928 and now

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Theatre · Piccadilly Circus · W1D · Contributed by The Underground Map
MAY
19
2014
Piccadilly Theatre (2007)
Credit: Turquoisefish

The Piccadilly Theatre is an Art Deco masterpiece in the West End.

Built by Bertie Crewe and Edward A. Stone for Edward Laurillard, its simple facade conceals a grandiose Art Deco interior designed by Marc-Henri Levy and Gaston Laverdet, with a 1232-seat auditorium decorated in shades of pink. Gold and green are the dominant colours in the bars and foyer, which include the original light fittings. Upon its opening on 27 April 1928, the theatre's souvenir brochure claimed, "If all the bricks used in the building were laid in a straight line, they would stretch from London to Paris." The opening production, Jerome Kern's musical Blue Eyes, starred Evelyn Laye, one of the most acclaimed actresses of the period.

The Piccadilly was briefly taken over by Warner Brothers, and operated as a cinema using the Vitaphone system, and premièred the first talking picture to be shown in Great Britain, The Singing Fool with Al Jolson. The theatre reopened in November 1929, with a production of The Student Prince, having a success in January 1931 with Folly to be Wise, running for 257 performances.

Following a conversion into a cabaret restaurant, the theatre reopened in April 1936 as the London Casino, which became noted for its lavish stage shows. The building sustained considerable damage when it was hit by a stray German bomb during World War II. After renovations in the early 1950s, it returned to its original name and became a venue for plays, revues and musicals.

In the 1960s and 1970s, the Piccadilly improved its reputation with a series of successful transfers from Broadway: Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, A Streetcar Named Desire and Man of La Mancha made their London debuts at the theatre. The Beatles recorded a number of songs at the Piccadilly on 28 February 1964 for the BBC Radio show, 'From Us to You'. In 1976, the Jerome Kern and Guy Bolton musical Very Good Eddie ran for 411 performances at the theatre. The cast included Prue Clarke.

In 1986, the venue was the setting for ITV's popular Sunday evening variety show, Live From the Piccadilly, hosted by Jimmy Tarbuck. The 1990s witnessed an expansion in ballet and dance, notably the most successful commercial ballet season ever to play in the West End, including Matthew Bourne's acclaimed production of Swan Lake.

The Donmar Warehouse production of Guys and Dolls ran at the Piccadilly from 19 May 2005 to 14 April 2007. It was followed by Paul Nicholas and David Ian's production of Grease which opened on 8 August 2007 and was the longest running show in the theatre's history before closing in April 2011.

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VIEW THE PICCADILLY CIRCUS AREA IN THE 1750s
The 1750 Rocque map is bounded by Sudbury (NW), Snaresbrook (NE), Eltham (SE) and Hampton Court (SW).
Outside these bounds, the 1750 map does not display.

VIEW THE PICCADILLY CIRCUS AREA IN THE 1800s
The 1800 mapping is bounded by Stanmore (NW), Woodford (NE), Bromley (SE) and Hampton Court (SW).
Outside these bounds, the 1800 map does not display.

VIEW THE PICCADILLY CIRCUS AREA IN THE 1830s
The 1830 mapping is bounded by West Hampstead (NW), Hackney (NE), Greenwich (SE) and Chelsea (SW).
Outside these bounds, the 1830 map does not display.

VIEW THE PICCADILLY CIRCUS AREA IN THE 1860s
The 1860 mapping is bounded by Brent Cross (NW), Stratford (NE), Greenwich (SE) and Hammermith (SW).
Outside these bounds, the 1860 map does not display.

VIEW THE PICCADILLY CIRCUS AREA IN THE 1900s
The 1900 mapping covers all of the London area.

 

 
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Piccadilly Circus

Piccadilly Circus was built in 1819 to connect Regent Street with the major shopping street of Piccadilly. The circus lost its circular form in 1886 with the construction of Shaftesbury Avenue.

The junction has been a very busy traffic interchange since construction, as it lies at the centre of Theatreland and handles exit traffic from Piccadilly, which Charles Dickens, Jr. described in 1879: "Piccadilly, the great thoroughfare leading from the Haymarket and Regent-street westward to Hyde Park-corner, is the nearest approach to the Parisian boulevard of which London can boast."

Piccadilly Circus tube station was opened 10 March 1906, on the Bakerloo Line, and on the Piccadilly Line in December of that year. In 1928, the station was extensively rebuilt to handle an increase in traffic.

The intersection's first electric advertisements appeared in 1910, and, from 1923, electric billboards were set up on the facade of the London Pavilion. Traffic lights were first installed on 3 August 1926, at the junction.

The Shaftesbury Memorial Fountain in Piccadilly Circus was erected in 1893 to commemorate the philanthropic works of Anthony Ashley Cooper, 7th Earl of Shaftesbury. During the Second World War, the statue atop the Shaftesbury Memorial Fountain was removed and was replaced by advertising hoardings. It was returned in 1948. When the Circus underwent reconstruction work in the late 1980s, the entire fountain was moved from the centre of the junction at the beginning of Shaftesbury Avenue to its present position at the southwestern corner.


LOCATIONS ON THE UNDERGROUND MAP
London Palladium:   The London Palladium is a 2,286-seat Grade II* West End theatre located on Argyll Street in the City of Westminster.
Piccadilly Circus:   Piccadilly Circus was built in 1819 to connect Regent Street with the major shopping street of Piccadilly. The circus lost its circular form in 1886 with the construction of Shaftesbury Avenue.
Royal Society:   The Royal Society is a self-governing Fellowship of many of the world’s most distinguished scientists drawn from all areas of science, engineering, and medicine.
Royal Society:   The Royal Society is a self-governing Fellowship of many of the world’s most distinguished scientists drawn from all areas of science, engineering, and medicine.
Soho:   Soho is a world-famous area of the City of Westminster and part of the West End of London.
St James’s:   St James’s is an exclusive area in the West End of London.


NEARBY STREETS AND BUILDINGS ON THE UNDERGROUND MAP
26, SM2 · Air Street, W1B · Air Street, W1J · Albany Courtyard, W1J · Angel Court, SW1Y · Apple Tree Yard, SW1Y · Archer Street, W1D · Babmaes Street, SW1Y · Bateman Street, W1D · Batemans Buildings, W1D · Beak Street, W1F · Bennett Street, SW1A · Berwick Road, W1F · Berwick Street, W1F · Bourchier Street, W1D · Bray House, SW1Y · Brewer Street, W1F · Bridle Lane, W1F · Broadwick Street, W1F · Burlington Arcade, W1J · Bury Street, SW1Y · Carlisle Street, W1D · Carlton Gardens, SW1Y · Carlton House Terrace, SW1Y · Carnaby Street, W1F · Chapone Place, W1D · Charles Ii Street, SW1Y · Chesham House, W1B · Church Place, SW1Y · Coventry Street, W1D · Crown Passage, SW1Y · Dalmeny Court, SW1Y · Dansey Place, W1D · Darblay Street, W1F · Dean Street, W1D · Denman Street, W1D · Duck Lane, W1F · Dudley House, W1J · Dufours Place, W1F · Duke Of York Street, SW1Y · Duke Street, SW1Y · Eagle Place, SW1Y · Farringdon Street, W1S · Fouberts Place, W1 · Fouberts Place, W1F · French Railways House, W1J · Frith Street, W1D · Ganton Street, W1F · Germyn Street, SW1Y · Gerrard Street, W1D · Glasshouse Street, W1B · Golden Square, W1F · Goslett Yard, WC2H · Great Chapel Street, W1F · Great Marlborough Street, W1F · Great Pulteney Street, W1F · Great Windmill Street, W1D · Greek Street, W1D · Greens Court, W1F · Ham Yard, W1D · Haymarket, SW1Y · Heddon Street, W1B · Hills Place, W1F · Hobhouse Court, SW1Y · Holland Street, W1F · Hollen Street, W1F · Ingestre Court, W1F · Ingestre Place, W1F · Jermyn Street, SW1Y · King Street, SW1Y · Kingly Court, W1B · Kingly Street, W1B · Kinnaird House, SW1Y · Leicester Street, WC2H · Lexington Street Cos, W1F · Lexington Street, W1F · Linen Hall, W1B · Little Marlborough Street, W1F · Livonia Street, W1F · London Pavilion, W1J · Lower James Street, W1F · Lower John Street, W1F · Lower Regent Street, SW1Y · Lowndes Court, W1F · Macclesfield Street, W1D · Manette Street, W1D · Marlborough Court, W1F · Marshall Street, W1F · Masons Yard, SW1Y · Meard Street, W1F · New Burlington Mews, W1B · New Burlington Street, W1S · New Zealand House, SW1Y · Newburg Road, W1F · Newburgh Street, W1F · Noel Street, W1F · Norris Street, SW1Y · Old Compton Street, W1D · Old Copton Street, W1D · Ormond Yard, SW1Y · Oxendon Street, SW1Y · Pall Mall, SW1Y · Panton Street, SW1Y · Park Place, SW1A · Peter Street, W1F · Piccadilly Arcade, SW1Y · Piccadilly Arcade, W1J · Piccadilly Circus, W1J · Piccadilly Place, W1J · Piccadilly, W1J · Poland Street, W1F · Portland Mews, W1F · Princes Arcade, SW1Y · Queen Street, EC4R · Ramillies Place, W1F · Ramillies Street, W1F · Regent Place, W1B · Regent Street, SW1Y · Regent Street, W1 · Regent Street, W1B · Richmond Buildings, W1D · Richmond Mews, W1D · Romilly Street, W1D · Royal Opera Arcade, SW1Y · Royalty Mews, W1D · Rupert Court, W1D · Rupert Street, W1D · Ryder Street, SW1Y · Sackville Street, W1S · Sandringham Court, W1F · Sheraton Street, W1F · Sherwood Street, W1F · Silver Place, W1F · Smiths Court, W1D · Soho Square, W1D · St Albans Street, SW1Y · St Annes Court, W1F · St James Square, SW1Y · St Jamess Chambers, SW1Y · St Jamess Market, SW1Y · St Jamess Square, SW1Y · Street, SW1Y · Suffolk Place, SW1Y · Suffolk Street, SW1Y · Sutton Row, W1D · Swallow Street, W1B · The London Pavillion, W1J · The Queens Walk, SE1 · Tisbury Court, W1D · Townsend House, W1D · Upper James Street, W1F · Vigo Street, W1S · Walkers Court, W1F · Wardour Mews, W1F · Wardour Street, W1D · Wardour Street, W1F · Warwick Street, W1B · Waterloo Place, SW1Y · Wedgewood Mews, W1D · Wedgwood Mews, W1D · Whitcomb Street, WC2H · Winnett Street, W1D ·


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