The Theatre Royal Drury Lane Celebrates Its First Birthday – Renovations, Exciting Events & More!

The Theatre Royal Drury Lane is one of the world’s oldest theatres in continuous use, and today is a very special day as it marks the theatre’s first birthday!

The theatre recently underwent a 3-year, £60 million restoration by Andrew and Madeleine Lloyd Webber and LW Theatres – with a grand reopening taking place in July 2021 by The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall.

Read on to hear more about this iconic venue – including the restorations and what’s been going on since!

About The Lane

The Lane is an incredible example of Georgian and Regency architecture in London, and since its restoration, this iconic cultural landmark has been restored to its former 1812 glory – but reimagined for the modern age.

The theatre has been an entertainment site since 1663, and has been visited by every reigning monarch since the restoration. Theatre royalty that has graced The Lane’s stage include Julie Andrews, Ivor Novello, Michael Crawford and Ginger Rogers, to name a few! The Lane’s audiences over the decades have experienced chariot races in Ben Hur, the Derby and an earthquake in The Hope, the Battle of Rorke’s Drift in Youth, and a train crash in The Whip, as well as sinking ships, air balloons and underwater fights – not to mention the Chelsea Flower Show, Madame Tussaud’s Chamber of Horrors, the flooding of Paris and Alpine avalanches.

A world class performance venue, The Lane offers distinct food, drink and cultural offerings – all in a Grade 1-listed Georgian interiors inspired by the building’s rich history.

The Restoration Process

Madeleine Lloyd Webber’s artistic vision was brought to life, showcasing striking and luxurious interiors designed alongside internationally renowned interior design studio, Alexandra Waterworth, and incredible architects Haworth Tompkins.

The restoration process involved a staggering 10 acres of paint, 1 acre of carpet, 750km of cable and 265 tons of steelwork, totalling up to 75,000 days of construction work time. During the process, the Greek Revival Front of House was brought back to its former glory, and a refashioned auditorium brought the audience and performer even closer, as over 200 seats were removed for wider seats with extra legroom and improved sight lines.

The Lane’s stage is now not only one of the largest in London at 80ft by 40ft – but is also one of the most versatile and technologically advanced auditoriums in the world. Since re-opening its doors, The Lane has welcomed over 1 million visitors across guided tours, shows, the Cecil Beaton bar, Grand Saloon for Afternoon Tea (designed by baker to the stars, Lily Vanilli) and The Garden for all-day food and drinks. The theatre is open to everyone, from those who have tickets to shows, to anyone looking to take a break from the hustle and bustle of Covent Garden.

To find out more about this awe-inspiring makeover, read more about the renovations and The Lane’s Stage Award win here.

2022 At The Lane

A year on since renovations, The Lane is busier than ever! This whirlwind first year has seen the launch of Disney’s Frozen, Jubilee celebrations, hosted performances from global stars such as Florence and the Machine – and has even acquired a marriage licence to allow for stage wedding ceremonies!

From casual and contemporary to formal and theatrical, each of The Lane’s spaces has its own charm. Visitors are guided upon entrance to the auditorium or one of the new entertaining spaces, which are:

The Garden – an all-day café and bar for everything from espressos to espresso martinis and brunch to sharing platters.

The Cecil Beaton Bar – delighting guests with specially created cocktails based on the work of the iconic photographer.

Grand Saloon – which serves a hugely popular Afternoon Tea created by baker to the stars, Lily Vanilli;

Rotunda Bar – where champagne will flow and elegant Georgian architecture shines.

Guests are also able to roam freely around the theatre and enjoy artwork from Andrew Lloyd Webber’s private collection, including a new commission of 6 huge Shakespearean canvases by Brooklyn artist, Maria Kreyn.