Leicester Square Theatre

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For the cinema once known under this name, see Odeon West End.
Leicester Square Theatre
Notre Dame Hall
Cavern in the Town
The Venue
Address 5 Leicester Place (off Leicester Square)
Westminster, London
United Kingdom
Coordinates 51°30′37″N 0°07′49″W / 51.510278°N 0.130278°W / 51.510278; -0.130278
Owner London International Arts Theatre
Capacity 420 seats; 60 seat basement
Opened 1953

The Leicester Square Theatre is since 2008 the name of a 400-seat theatre near Leicester Square, in the City of Westminster, London, previously known as Notre Dame Hall, Cavern in the Town and The Venue. The theatre, which also has a 70-seat basement lounge theatre, hosts stand-up comedy, cabaret, music, plays and comedies.


The building originated as the Notre Dame Hall in 1953, replacing an earlier building that had been destroyed by World War II bombing. It was used as a French cultural centre for a time. It became a popular music venue in the 1960s under the name Cavern in the Town, regularly hosting beat music group The Small Faces. It was renamed Notre Dame Hall in the 1970s and presented The Rolling Stones and The Who, but specialised in punk music, hosting such acts as The Sex Pistols. In 1979, The Clash previewed material from London Calling here shortly before recording the album. The hall continues hosting live music acts venue such as Tommy Emmanuel, Macy Gray Larry Carlton Paul Mcartney John Mayall, Cleo Laine, Ruby Turner and Tony Christie. In 2001, it was converted to a theatre and named The Venue.[1]

The theatre's famous productions have included the world premiere of the Boy George musical Taboo, which played a highly successful run in 2002 before transferring to Broadway, Round the Horne (2003) After this, the theatre was then named Leicester Square Theatre. American comedian Joan Rivers made her acting debut in August 2008 with her play Joan Rivers: A Work in Progress by a Life in Progress, which played a total of 75 performances to celebrate her birthday. A musical based on the comic strip Alex, by Charles Peattie and Russell Taylor, starring Robert Bathurst, finished the year 2008. and An Evening with Joan Collins ran from 2011 to 2015. Bill Bailey, Rosanne Barr, Sandra Bernhard, Jo Brand, Bill Burr, Julian Clary, Greg Davies, Macy Gray, Richard Herring, Russell Howard, Reginald D Hunter, Stewart Lee, Demetri Martin, Jerry Sadowitz, Miranda Sings, Tom Stade, Doug Stanhope, Ricky Tomlinson, and Tim Vine have also performed at the Leicester Square Theatre.

The theatre is owned and managed by artistic director Martin Witts.


  1. ^ Witts, Martin. "History: The Talk of the Town – The Leicester Square Theatre", Leicester Square Theatre, accessed 23 September 2012

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