St Martin's Lane, London, WC2N 4ES
LocationThe Coliseum Theatre can be found on St Martin’s Lane in the West End, within walking distance of Covent Garden. Whilst the high street chains, markets and shops of Covent Garden are within easy reach, St Martin’s Lane has its own unique character with a multitude of antique dealerships, secondhand bookshops and gentlemen’s outfitters to peruse. There are also plenty of cafés and restaurants within the area that offer good deals on pre-theatre meals.
Getting thereBy Tube: The nearest station to the Coliseum Theatre is Leicester Square on the Piccadilly and Northern lines.By bus: Numbers 3, 6, 9, 11, 12, 13, 15, 23, 24, 29, 53, 77a, 88, 91, 139, 159 and 176 all stop close to the theatre.By taxi or car: There is a large taxi rank at the nearby Charing Cross station. Patrons of the ENO also receive a 50% discount on selected local MasterPark car parks when you validate your ticket at the box office; Chinatown, Poland Street and Cavendish Square are all close by.
SeatingThe London Coliseum is one of the most beautiful theatres in the West End. Home to the ENO and ENB it is a stunning example of theatrical architecture. The colossal auditorium grips you as soon as you enter the theatre, and it has bee spectacularly designed to give fantastic views across all levels. Seating 2,358 people over 4 levels the space feels grand and magnificent, reflecting the scale of the work onstage. Prices vary throughout the whole section, with seats nearest the stage often soaring above the £100 mark. There are many reasonably priced seats across all four levels, with the Balcony offering the best value for money. Restrictions are on the whole minimal, and the space has really been designed with the audience in mind.
The Stalls are divided into three sections and run deep from the stage, creating a curve around the section for the other levels. Better seats are towards the middle section as those on the end of each row tend to get lost beyond the edges of the stage. Stalls boxes are set behind the main section but offer direct views of the stage and action. The Dress Circle is divided into four main sections with slips running either side around the curve of the balcony. The rake is moderate throughout meaning that views over the audience in front is good. The overhang from the Upper Circle begins to affect sightlines towards the rear of the section, with the Upper Circle following the shape of the Dress Circle, although considerably higher.
The Balcony is 68 steps above street level and feels very high. There are no restrictions to the view even at the back of the section, although the seats are very upright and almost force you to sit forward, along with little leg room. These do provide excellent value for money and often the spectacle manages to carry right up to the top of the section.
Getting into the venue
The London Coliseum main entrance is located on St Martin’s Lane. There is step free access into the main foyer, the Stalls section and the Stalls bars via a ramp.
All other sections of the theatre must be reached by stairs. Alternatively, there are two lifts, including one in the main foyer which can take patrons to most levels of the auditorium, excluding the Upper Circle. All bars are accessible via the lift.
Staff are on hand to assist with navigation throughout the theatre.
Transfer seats are available into any level access aisle seat in the theatre. Staff may attempt to assist with transferring patrons, however this is not guaranteed and it is recommended that a companion is brought. At seat service is available for patrons in the Boxes, but not for those in the main auditorium. Staff are able to store wheelchairs for the duration of the performance.
How to Book
For those who request special assistance or wish to book wheelchair spaces, it is important to book in advance and notify the theatre of any special requirements. ENO runs a free access scheme which entitles disabled patrons and their companions to purchase half-price tickets and receive free mailings and priority booking.
For further information on joining the access scheme and to book wheelchair and transfer seats, please call: 020 7845 9300 or email: firstname.lastname@example.orgAccess bookings telephone line 020 7492 9930 or access booking form
HistoryThe Coliseum Theatre is an opera house situated on St Martin’s Lane, and is the home of the English National Opera. Designed in 1904 by Frank Matcham, the architect also responsible for the London Palladium, the aim of the theatre was to become the biggest and most impressive ‘People’s palace of entertainment’ of the age, and with a seating capacity of 2358 and an opulent interior it can be said to have fulfilled this wish. The first performance upon opening in 1904 was a variety revue, and in 1911 the playwright W. S. Gilbert produced his last play, The Hooligan, at the Coliseum.
Whilst opera remains the main focus of the Coliseum Theatre, it has hosted various other kinds of entertainment throughout its tenure. Musical comedy The White Horse Inn ran for a solid 651 performances from 1931, and in 1963 the building was the second to become one of the capital’s three Cinerama Theatres. These were opened to showcase the development of film as an artistic medium, although the theatre stopped functioning as a cinema in 1968.
Despite undergoing renovations between 2000 and 2004, today the Coliseum Theatre retains many of its original features and is a Grade II-listed building. It has twice hosted the Royal Variety Performances in recent years, as well as a host of classic ballets and operas.
- Partenope, opened 15 Mar 2017, closed 24 Mar 2017
- The Winter's Tale, opened 27 Feb 2017, closed 14 Mar 2017
- Rigoletto, opened 02 Feb 2017, closed 28 Feb 2017
- Giselle, opened 11 Jan 2017, closed 22 Jan 2017
- The Nutcracker, opened 14 Dec 2016, closed 07 Jan 2017
- Tosca, opened 03 Oct 2016, closed 03 Dec 2016
- Sunset Boulevard, opened 01 Apr 2016, closed 04 May 2016
- Sweeney Todd, opened 30 Mar 2015, closed 12 Apr 2015
- La Traviata, opened 09 Feb 2015, closed 13 Mar 2015
- La Boheme, opened 29 Oct 2014, closed 06 Dec 2014