Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

CATF
Roald Dahl’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory will make its world debut at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane in the summer of 2013. Created by the producers behind Matilda the Musical, this delicious production hopes to capture similar praise in its interpretation of Dahl’s immensely popular original text. The show will feature a new and original score by Marc Shaiman and Scott Whitman and will star Tony Award winning Douglas Hodge as the eccentric Willy Wonka. A golden ticket to this much anticipated production should not only excite audience members tastebuds but should also be an all consuming treat for all the senses!
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Booking until 31 October 2015
Running Time: 2hrs 30minutes

Box Office Contacts

Box Office:0844 412 4660
Access Booking:0844 412 4648
Group Booking:0844 871 8810
Stage Door:020 7850 8790

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History

The Theatre Royal Drury Lane is one of the oldest and biggest theatre sites in the West End and its venue on Catherine Street has been home to each of the four theatres 1663

The early theatre buildings tended to house melodrama, opera and pantomime and were known, as the current theatre is today, for its big extravagant sets.

In the 18th century the theatre famously launches the career of Joseph Grimaldi, a Regency era clown who is said to haunt the Theatre Royal Drury Lane to this day.

After two previous theatres were destroyed by fires, the Theatre Royal Drury Lane as we know it today was rebuilt in 1811 and reopened a year later with a production of Hamlet. Notable early performances included a production of Cataract of the Ganges (1823) which required an elaborate grand finale with a horseback escape and raging fire!

The mid to late 19th century saw a plethora of English and Italian Opera at the theatre, including The Maid of Artois, Maritana and performances from the Carl Rosa Opera Company as well as a successful run of plays including The Shaugraun.

Big budget productions continued throughout the 20th century, with the 1909 play The Whip kicking things off with a rip-roaring start as a derailed train hissed steam and 12 real horses ran amok! Similarly large scale was Noel Coward’s 1931 play Cavalcade, which featured over 300 cast and crew!

Throughout World War Two the theatre became the base of the Entertainments National Service Association but sustained minor damage from bomb blasts, reopening after a short dark period in 1946 with Pacific 1860.

The post war years were when musicals infiltrated the theatre, with many Rodgers and Hammerstein shows making their West End debuts at the venue, including Oklahoma! (1946), South Pacific (1951) and The King and I (1953).

My Fair Lady ran at the theatre for five years from 1958, as did 42nd Street from 1984. However the theatres first major modern success was Miss Saigon which ran for 10 years from 1989.

Recent productions have included The Producers (2004), the high budget The Lord of the Rings (2007), Oliver! (2009) and Shrek the Musical (2011).

The current production at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane is new musical Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, which made its world debut at the theatre in June 2013.