Celebrating London theatres 7: the ‘G’s


A West End theatre on Charing Cross Road, the Garrick was opened in 1889 and named after actor-producer David Garrick. Originally associated with melodrama, it is now closely associated with comedy and short run plays and musicals.

Grade II* listed, the Garrick is owned by Nimax.


The Gate Theatre in Notting Hill is located above the Prince Albert pub. Opened in 1979, it produces its own work in-house in a 75-seat, transformable space. The current artistic director is Ellen McDougall.

The Gate remains interested in “reflecting popular grassroots culture”. In 1982 it opened an offshoot pub theatre above the Latchmere in Battersea Park: this has operated independently since 2002 as Theatre503.

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Upstairs at the Gatehouse is a pub theatre in Highgate Village which opened in 1997. It has been owned and operated by John and Kate Plews as Ovation Theatres Ltd since the beginning.

Known for a mix of offbear and mainstream shows, modernistic operas, and new musicals and dramas, the Gatehouse sits in a refurbished 1895 auditorium which has previously served as a music hall, cinema, Masonic lodge, and jazz club.

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The Gielgud Theatre, a West End house on Shaftesbury Avenue, was opened in 1906 as the Hicks Theatre (named after Seymour Hicks). From 1908 to 1994 it was known as the Globe Theatre, but was renamed in honour of actor John Gielgud following the opening of Shakespeare’s Globe on Bankside.

Grade II listed, the Gielgud is owned by Delfont Mackintosh Theatres.

Gillian Lynne

Opened as the New London in 1973 on the site of the Winter Garden Theatre (which closed in 1959). It was the home of the hit musical Cats for twenty-one years until 2002, and for a seven-year run of War House until 2016.

Owned by Really Useful Theatres, the venue was named in honour of choreographer Gillian Lynne shortly before her death in 2018 at the age of 92.


The Greenwich theatre stands on the site of the former Rose & Crown Music Hall on Crooms Hill, and opened in 1969. It is a showcase for both new works and revivals, and from 2009 was involved in the Stage to Screen project, making play revivals available on DVD.

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The Guildhall School of Music & Drama is based in the City of London, adjacent to the Barbican Centre. It hosts public performances in the Silk Street Theatre and in two venues at Milton Court.

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Join me tomorrow when I look at London venues beginning with “H”.