Garrick Theatre

Garrick Theatre

2 Charing Cross Road, London, WC2H 0HH
West End

The Garrick Theatre takes its name from the actor David Garrick, and was commissioned by W. S. Gilbert of Gilbert and Sullivan fame. It opened in 1889 with a design by Walter Emden, though C. J. Phipps acted as consultant for the rather difficult build when an underground river was uncovered underneath the site. Quite a small house, it originally consisted of four levels accommodating 800 seats, but with the closure of the Gallery the capacity has been reduced to 718.

The first play to perform at the Garrick was The Profilgate by Arthur Wing Pinero who saw another one of his works, The Notorious Mrs. Ebbsmith premiere at the same theatre in 1895. J.M. Barrie’s play The Wedding Guest began a series of successes for the theatre, which included Rutland Barrington’s “fairy play”, Water Babies, in 1902. Continuing the theme of fairies, W. S. Gilbert premiered his new piece Harlequin and the Fairy’s Dilemma in 1904, the only show of his to play at the theatre he had commissioned.

The theatre began an association with comedy in 1982 with the opening of the farce No Sex Please, We’re British, which settled in for a four year run through 1986, when the theatre was purchased by Stoll Moss Theatres and refurbished, with the gold-leaf features of the auditorium being extensively restored by designer Carl Toms. This was the longest-running show at the Garrick until J. B. Priestley’s An Inspector Calls transferred from the Aldwych Theatre in 1995 and resided for 6 years. During its residency the front façade of the theatre was renovated.

In recent years a number of musicals have played here, including A Little Night Music (2009), Chicago (2011) and The Scottsboro Boys (2014). And in 2015, Kenneth Branagh took up residency at the Garrick for a year-long season of plays with his own theatre company, debuting with The Winter’s Tale starring Dame Judi Dench.

Nimax Theatres has owned the Garrick since 2005.


The auditorium has three levels – Stalls, Dress Circle and Grand Circle. In the Stalls, the view of the top of the stage is slightly obscured by the overhang of the Dress Circle from Row N onwards. The rake of the seats doesn't really become apparent until Row G, and this has been known to cause a few sightline issues for the front rows up to Row E in productions that have utilised a higher stage.

In the Dress Circle, the view of the stage is not obscured by the overhang of the Upper Circle, but the ceiling does feel a bit low for those in the last row. The seats are designed in a horseshoe shape around the theatre and other than those seats at the extreme sides (which are priced lower), the Dress Circle offers good sightlines. The only thing to be aware of is that the legroom is not as good as in the stalls.

The legroom in the Grand Circle is disappointing, worst in the centre of the rows.Views can be obstructed by the safety rail along the front of the Grand Circle. But the prices do reflect these shortcomings.


Recent Productions

Show Opened Closed Links
Young Frankenstein September 2017 February 2018 Review
Horrible Histories  August 2017 September 2017  
Gangsta Granny July 2017 September 2017  
Tape Face June 2017 July 2017  
The Miser March 2017  June 2017 News
Potted Panto December 2016 January 2017  
This House November 2016 February 2017 Review
The Entertainer August 2016 November 2016 Review
Romeo and Juliet May 2016 August 2016 Review
The Painkiller March 2016 April 2016 Review
Red Velvet January 2016 February 2016 Review
All On Her Own / Harliquinade October 2015 January 2016 Review
The Winter's Tale October 2015 January 2016 Review
Let It Be February 2015 September 2015 Review
The Scottsboro Boys October 2014 February 2015 Review
Twelve Angry Men November 2013 June 2014  
Rock of Ages January 2013 November 2013 Review
Loserville October 2012 January 2013 Review
Chicago November 2011 September 2012 Review
Pygmalion May 2011 September 2011 Review
The Hurly Burly Show March 2011 May 2011 Review
When We Are Married October 2010 February 2011 Review
All the Fun of the Fair April 2010 September 2010 Review
The Little Dog Laughed January 2010 April 2010 Review
Change October 2009 January 2010 Review
The Mysteries September 2009 October 2009 Review
A Little Night Music April 2009 July 2009 Review
Zorro The Musical July 2008 March 2009 Review
Derren Brown - An evening of wonders May 2008 June 2008 Review
Absurd Person Singular December 2007 March 2008 Review
Bad Girls September 2007 November 2007 Review
Treats March 2007 May 2007 Review
One Flew over the Cuckoo's Nest March 2006 June 2006 Review
You Never Can Tell November 2005 March 2006 Review
Travel Info
Nearest tube: 
Leicester Square
Tube lines: 
Piccadilly, Northern
Railway station: 
Charing Cross
Bus numbers: 
(Charing Cross Road) 24, 29, 176; (Strand) 6, 9, 11, 13, 15, 23, 87, 91, 139
Night bus numbers: 
(Charing Cross Road) 24, 176, N5, N20, N29, N41, N279; (Strand) 6, 23, 139, N9, N11, N13, N15, N21, N26, N44, N47, N87, N89, N91, N155, N343, N551
Car park: 
Leicester Square, Whitcomb Street (3mins)
Within congestion zone?: 
Directions from tube: 
(2mins) Follow Charing Cross Road parallel to Leicester Square until you reach the theatre on your left.
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