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Theatre Royal Bath, Bath

4.5
#2 of 53 in Nightlife in Bath
The Theatre Royal in Bath, England, was built in 1805. A Grade II* listed building, it has been described by the Theatres Trust as "One of the most important surviving examples of Georgian theatre architecture". It has a capacity for an audience of around 900.

The Theatre Royal was built to replace the Old Orchard Street Theatre, funded by a Tontine and elaborately decorated. The architect was George Dance the Younger, with John Palmer carrying out much of the work. It opened with a performance of Shakespeare's Richard III and hosted performances by many leading actors of the time including Dorothea Jordan, William Macready and Edmund Kean. A major fire in 1862 destroyed the interior of the building and was quickly followed by a rebuilding programme by Charles J. Phipps, which included the construction of the current entrance. Further redecoration was undertaken in 1892; more extensive building work, including a new staircase and the installation of electric lighting, followed in 1902. Despite performances by casts including Sarah Bernhardt, the ballerina Anna Pavlova and Mrs. Patrick Campbell, the theatre was rarely very profitable. During World War II Donald Wolfit, Irene Vanbrugh, John Gielgud and Sybil Thorndike appeared, with shows including Noël Coward's Private Lives and Blyth Spirit, a performance by Ballet Rambert and light entertainment such as Charley's Aunt, but audiences declined.

In 1979 the theatre was bought by a trust and, following public donations, it underwent refurbishment, with the rebuilding of the stage and the installation of a new taller fly tower for scenery and lighting. In 1997 a new 150 seat theatre, known as the Ustinov Studio, was opened. Further restoration work to the main auditorium was needed in 2010. In 2005 a children's theatre known as The Egg was opened. The complex also includes bars and restaurants.
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Theatre Royal Bath Reviews

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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
904 reviews
Google
4.6
TripAdvisor
  • A gorgeous theatre with super comfy seats! Saw Six at the weekend and we were in the dress circle and were able see everything. We bought the cheaper tickets that had a ‘pole obstruction’ but we...  more »
  • We saw an evening performance of Dial M For Murder. The theatre is very convenient for public parking, and very close to loads of eating places. The staff were very courteous and helpful, it was our.....  more »
Google
  • A great place to watch live theatre. Ample leg room, friendly helpful staff. Just a shame that like so many places the toilet facilities are very limited. But still one of our favorite places to visit.
  • Very nice and comfortable. The production was really well done and the staff were very friendly, helpful and courteous. I will always attend this theatre in the future and recommend others to do so.....it may surprise you!

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