Stars of the West End stage joined queuing theatre fans in Leicester Square today to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the opening of London’s iconic tkts ticket booth.
Tanguera’s gangster-like dancers, the furry puppet inhabitants of Avenue Q, Grease’s high school sweethearts and an assortment of characters from The 39 Steps helped give the celebration a distinctly theatrical feel, which is only right for a ticket outlet that has sold nearly 11 million tickets to London shows in the last three decades.
Originally opened in a green and yellow hut in Leicester Square in 1980, the popularity of tkts, then known as the Half Price Ticket Booth, has grown and grown in the years since. It is now housed in the Clocktower Building on the south side of Leicester Square and is responsible for one in 39 of all the theatre tickets sold in the West End.
Run by the Society of London Theatre (SOLT) as an official ticket outlet, tkts sells theatre tickets at a range of discounts, up to 50% off, for both on the day performances and up to a week in advance. The profit made by tkts is pumped back into the theatre industry, funding audience development initiatives and supporting future actors and producers.
As well as inviting some of the West End’s hottest stars – including Over The Rainbow finalist Lauren Samuels and The 39 Steps’s Dianne Pilkington – to pay a visit, tkts celebrated this landmark birthday by giving free tickets away to the first 30 people in the queue this morning. Those theatre fans not among the lucky 30 can still join in the celebrations, as scratch cards, which include a chance to win some great theatrical prizes, are being handed our in Leicester Square today and tomorrow.