The Queen’s Theatre is one of the West End theatres on Shaftesbury Avenue.
The theatre was opened in 1907 – originally as a twin to the neighbouring Hicks Theatre (now renamed as the Gielgud Theatre). The Queen’s and the Gielgud are both designed by W. G. R. Sprague.
In September 1940, the theatre was subject to a direct hit by a bomb and the façade and lobby were destroyed. The theatre remained closed for almost 20 years until it was refurbished and the exterior modernised. The auditorium remained as Edwardian décor. The reconstructed theatre opened in July 1959 with John Gielgud’s solo performance in Shakespeare speeches and sonnets, Ages of Man.
After 18 years at the Palace Theatre, Cameron Mackintosh’s production of Les Misérables transferred to the Queen’s Theatre in 2004. The musical celebrated its 20th anniversary at the venue on 8 October 2005 – and in October 2006 took over Cats to become the longest running musical of all time.