facebook play-alt chevron-thin-right chevron-thin-left cancel location info chevron-thin-down star-full help-with-circle calendar images mail whatsapp directions_car directions_bike train directions_walk directions_bus close spinner11
Are you missing theatre as much as we are? Support us now with Theatre Tokens and see your favourite shows when they reopen. #IMissTheatre

New season launched in refurbished King’s Head

First Published 17 April 2008, Last Updated 17 April 2008

The King’s Head in Islington showed off the refurbishment of its pub theatre to guests and members of the press today, who were treated to a sneak preview of two musical numbers from its ambitious 2008 season – the first in a decade to be fully produced in-house.

New lighting equipment, men’s toilets and padded bench seating – increasing the seating capacity from 112 to 140 – have been installed at the King’s Head, which has long been in need of extensive refurbishment. The work has finally been completed after a long fundraising campaign, spearheaded by the venue’s Artistic Director Stephanie Sinclaire, following the death of her husband and the founder of the King’s Head, Dan Crawford, in 2005, which sent the venue to its “lowest point in history”, said Sinclaire today.

In addition to a fundraising gala every other week for a year, financial support has been garnered from sponsors, commercial investors and philanthropists, allowing the theatre to present its own fully-produced season in a refurbished space this year.

Speaking today, Sinclaire praised the theatrical community, who “rallied round” to ensure the future of the theatre. Now, said Sinclaire, the King’s Head has been brought “kicking and screaming into the 21st century – completely bypassing the 20th, I might add!”

The new season kicks off on 24 March with the world premiere of Cole Porter’s musical The Black And White Ball, and continues with three more musical premieres and a trio of dramas. Today’s guests were treated to excerpts from two musicals in the season, Guy Bolton and Vivian Ellis’s Godiva and Ian McFarlane’s Betwixt!

Speaking about the season, Sinclaire told Official London Theatre: “I’m very, very happy. It’s been a long time in the planning. There’s a lovely phrase – ‘slow progress builds a mighty foundation’ – and it’s really been brick by brick, step by step, and I feel we’re absolutely ready for this. It’s an extraordinary team, all the shows have amazing attachments. I sincerely hope that we will be able to go the whole year with really high quality, commercial, but also interesting new productions.”

Commenting on the fundraising journey leading to today’s launch, she said: “I had a mission, there were a lot of obstacles in my way, especially early on, but I did have a kind of inner conviction that we would get here.” The King’s Head, she added, has gained the support of the theatrical community because “It is their theatre, where they can come – brilliant newcomers or very well known artists – and try new material in a very safe space.”

One of those well-known actors, Celia Imrie, is a long-time supporter of the King’s Head, and last played there in 2003 in one-woman show Unsuspecting Susan. Imrie echoed Sinclaire’s comments that the King’s Head is “kept alive by love” from its supporters. “It absolutely is, and I think you can tangibly feel it. In my day you didn’t get paid anything, practically at all, to work here and therefore you are absolutely doing it for love. It’s a great element. People come back here because they’ve all had wonderful experiences, chances possibly that they wouldn’t have had anywhere else.” She added: “Long may it last.”



Sign up

Related articles

If you click through to seat selection (where you'll see either best available or a seating plan), you will be seeing the most up-to-date prices. If this differs from what we've written on the calendar, please bear with us, as those prices will update soon.

We now sell our famous TKTS Booth discounts online here at Official London Theatre.

We are now cancelling all performances up until and including 31 May 2020 to help us process existing bookings whilst we wait for further clarity from the government in terms of when we will be able to reopen.

We are so sorry that in these testing and difficult times you are not able to enjoy the show you have booked for and hope the following helps clarify next steps in respect of your tickets .

There is nothing that you need to do if your performance has been cancelled, but we do ask for your patience.

If you have booked directly with the theatre or show website for an affected performance, please be assured that they will contact you directly to arrange an exchange for a later date, a credit note/voucher or a refund. If you have booked via a ticket agent they will also be in contact with you directly.

We are processing in strict date order of performance, so you are likely to be contacted after the date you were due to go to the theatre. However, we want to reassure you that you will be contacted, and your order will be processed, but please do bear with us.

We’d like to thank everyone who has been patient and kind in dealing with their ticket providers so far and we are sorry that we cannot process your order as quickly as we would like.

Please do not contact your credit card company as that will slow the process down and put an additional burden on our box office and ticket agent teams.

In order for us to serve our audiences the best we can, please do not get in touch with your point of sale if you have booked for performances after 31 May. Please be reassured that if we have to cancel future performances you will be directly contacted by your theatre or ticket provider. Our producers continue to plan for all eventualities dependent on the individual needs of their shows and we will provide further updates on specific shows as and when they become available.

We look forward to welcoming you back into our theatres as soon as we are allowed to resume performances. In the meantime stay safe and healthy.

While theatres are currently closed, various venues and productions are making announcements for their individual shows, including cancellations and rescheduled performances. Please check with the individual shows for details.