THROUGH THE STAGE DOOR gives the public a unique opportunity to go behind the scenes of one of the most famous theatres in the world, Theatre Royal Drury Lane. The tour transports visitors back in time to feel the mystical and historic atmosphere of London’s oldest and most fascinating theatre.
Since its construction in 1663, this theatre has triumphed over tragedy, fire, bankruptcy and even murder…
The tour draws on the experience of professional actors, who conduct the tour and perform some of the most intriguing episodes in the theatres 338 year history. Their repertoire includes characters such as Hamlet and Ophelia, Nell Gwynn, former theatre managers (Garrick, Sheridan and Kean), playwrights and back stage staff. The tour also explores the theatre’s Royal retiring rooms and front of house areas.
Starting at the box office, our large group of mostly school children were guided through the corridors of the foyer, a place many of us will have walked through many times before. But with the help of our guide, we were told the history of the theatre, the statues within it and even why the walls are the colour they are. I got to sit in the Royal Retiring Room (after a kind young man let me sit in a chair #Shouldn’tHaveWornHeels) whilst we were told of all the famous faces who had spent their intervals there. Interestingly we were told that when any members of the royal family come to the theatre, they have to bring their own food and drink because they can’t run the risk of someone trying to poison them!) Inside the auditorium we sat and listened to the history of the building, the ghost stories and tales of how the King and Prince used to sit in boxes opposite each other and throw things across the auditorium! We visited the deep dark tunnels underneath the theatre where ghosts are often seen and then brought back around to the front of the building where we first began to answer any questions before the end of the tour.
It is worth mentioning that this is a historical tour of the Drury Lane Theatre. Those hoping to hear about about the making of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, or to see some of the shows props and costumes will be disappointed (that would need to be a whole different tour). This is a very informative tour with some great guides who act out as people from the past to help recreate the feeling of the time being spoken about.
Theatre in London in expensive these days, but for a tenner you can spend an hour being entertained and getting some great bite size chunks of theatre information that you can use to amaze your friends and family then next time you are at a show. Well worth a trip! Check it out.
The tour lasts approximately 1 hour.
For dates & times of the tours click here
Or call 0844 412 2705†
† Calls are charged at 7p per minute plus standard network rates
Children and Seniors: £8.50
Family ticket: £30.00 (2 Adults and 2 Children)
Groups of 10 or more £8.50 per person (Please call to book a group)
As there are lots of stairs, the tour is not recommended for the infirm and ladies are advised to wear flat shoes. Please assemble in the Box Office area ten minutes before the tour commences. Theatre Royal Drury Lane is a working building so the content of the tours may vary and due to rehearsals some areas may occasionally be closed.