Britain's leading theatre is
housed in a concrete complex on the South Bank. After
200 years of debate regarding a national theatre in 1963 the
company was formed under Laurence (later Lord) Olivier, and
the huge building, designed by Sir Denys Lasdun, opened in
The Royal National Theatre has
three auditoriums offering choice from the classics to the
most contemporary productions. The largest of the three
theatres is named after Olivier, while the Cottesloe and the
Lyttleton commemorate administrators.
The Olivier has a large open
platform and presents big shows, the Lyttleton, with its traditional
proscenium arch, stages medium-sized productions and Cottesloe,
with flexible studio space, is an venue for smaller shows.
The Royal National Theatre is
currently being redeveloped as part of the south bank project.
New investment will improve staging, scenery, sound and lighting
and outside a totally new exterior performance space, 'Theatre
Square' is being created.
Backstage tours of the National
are available, led by well-informed guides.Tours are daily,
Monday to Saturday. The tour lasts about one hour, and there
is a charge. Book on 020 7452
Free events, often for children
Bars and restaurant, including
the Terrace Cafe on floor 2.
is open Monday to Saturday, 10:00-23:00
Tel: Box Office: 020 7452
3000, Information 020 7452 3400