The Old Vic Theatre has a rich history dating back to 1818 when it was first used as a playhouse. It became heavily associated with Lilian Baylis in the 1900s who turned the venue around by presenting Shakespeare plays and seasons of opera and ballet. After moving to Sadler's Wells Theatre in Angel, the venue went back to more traditional roots and suffered from bad bomb damage in the Second World War. Olivier's National Theatre Company used the building in the 1960s before the National Theatre was built on the same side of the river. Kevin Spacey is the current artistic director, and the venue thrives with its own company at the helm.
The building is versatile and changes for various productions, which have also included putting the auditorium in the round. The shape of the stage can be extended, as much of the auditorium is built in a horse shoe shape, giving side on views of the stage and interesting perspectives. Prices are usually very fair and differ depending on where you choose to sit.
Big Budget Tip
The auditorium's shape means that the Dress Circle is quite far away from the stage, although is almost on a level with the action. The mid front Stalls section provides the best views, with the centre of M, N and P being a good distance away to take everything in and hot have to always be looking upwards.
Best Value Tip
Under 26's can benefit from the theatre's fantastic £12.50 ticket policy for every show, where only proof of age is required at purchase. Failing that, tickets in the Lilian Baylis Upper Circle are extremely reasonable, and provide a fascinating angle to see any production. For sold out productions, standing and bench tickets are also available for under £10.