The Hackney Empire is a theatre on Mare Street, in Hackney, built in 1901 as a music hall.
Hackney Empire is a grade II* listed building. The theatre was built as a music hall and designed by Frank Matcham. Charlie Chaplin, WC Fields, Stanley Holloway, Stan Laurel and Marie Lloyd have all performed there.
The theatre was threatened with demolition in the mid 1980s and in 1986, actor-manager Roland Muldoon mounted a campaign to acquire the freehold and to re-open the Hackney Empire as a permanent performance space; allowing the theatre to return to theatrical use for its 85th anniversary. The Hackney Empire played host to the Amleida’s production of Hamlet in 1195 starring Ralph Fiennes and Francesca Annis’s.
In 2001, the Empire closed for a £17 million refurbishment project designed by Tim Ronalds Architects with Carr and Angier acting as theatre consultants. It was reopened in 2004.