Visiting the scintillating capital of the United Kingdom does not necessarily mean that you should only stick to pubs, the National Gallery, Buckingham Palace, and the London Eye. While they are excellent sights and experiences in and of themselves, there is plenty more to explore within the bounds of this historical city. While strolling about and living it up is essential when one is on a vacation, boosting one’s intellect and cultural outlook is also vital. So, for this particular reason, today we are going to look at some of the most exquisite opera houses and theatres of the city. Buckle up, dear travellers, for this is going to be one musical ride (wink)!
1. Theatre Royal, Drury Lane:
There are two ways in which one can kick off suck a list: either bring in the heaviest contestant or a more modest one to set the mood. This time, we went for the latter. Yet however modest you might think the Theatre Royal of Drury Lane (known also as simply “Drury Lane”) may be, it still is one of the most exquisite West End theatres of all time. Situated majestically in Convent Garden and listed as a Grade I building within the Statutory List of Buildings of Special Architectural or Historic Interest, it was opened to the public in 1660. Rebuilt three times in 1674, 1794, and 1812, it is owned and operated by Really Useful Theatres (the property of the well-known composer Andrew Lloyd Webber). All the more reason to book a ticket and watch “Jesus Christ Superstar” (considered one of his top works).
2. Royal Albert Hall:
Moving on: are you a fan of the Sydney Opera House or any other awe-inspiring music hall around the globe? If your answer is a resounding yes, then this is your lucky day, for London can also put an eye-popping contestant forth for you to explore: the Royal Albert Hall. Built by Captain Francis Fowke and Major-General Henry Y. D. Scott between the years 1867 and 1871 to adhere to the Italianate architectural style, it was worth more than 200,000 pounds at its time (which was more than jaw-dropping then). Soaring at a height of exactly 41 metres and able to accommodate exactly 5,272 people, it hosts more than 400 distinct events a year. Opened on 29 March 1871 by Queen Victoria, it was originally supposed to be called the Central Hall of Arts and Sciences. Queen Victoria, however, thought otherwise and changed it to its current name. This way, it is spiritually closer to the royal family and, let’s be honest, a hell of a lot easier to remember (triple wink)!
3. Royal Opera House:
Well, one could not have omitted the Royal Opera House if one wanted a list as complete as possible. Its position in Covent Garden grants it the special privilege of being called simply “Covent Garden” (you might want to keep that in mind if you manage to get lost). Originally called the “Theatre Royal”, it now houses the Royal Opera, the Royal Ballet, and, of course, the Orchestra of the Royal Opera House as well. Designated a Grade I building within the Statutory List of Buildings of Special Architectural or Historic Interest, it boasts a capacity to seat 2,256 people. In for another reason to check this marvel out? It has the famous “Young Dancer” statue by Enzo Plazzotta in front of it! Oh, and did you know that it was destroyed two times during the course of history (1808 and 1856) and that this is but the third incarnation of its kind? Nothing can stop art, now, can it (wink)?
Did you enjoy our list? Which of the aforementioned cultural establishments have you explored and what lasting impressions have they stirred in you? Tell us all about it in the comment section below and be sure to check back from time to time for some interesting updates and articles. Safe travels and see you on our next adventure!