|Description:||The Criterion Theatre is located in the City of Westminster on Piccadilly Circus, and is a grade II listed West End theatre with a 588 seating capacit... Read More Below|
One of London's noblest theatres, the Criterion was built in 1871 on the site of a former coaching inn, on what is now Piccadilly Circus. Over the years, the theatre has been refurbished several times, and survived the Blitz in World War II because its auditorium is below street level - during the war the BBC used it as a studio from which light entertainment programmes were broadcast live. In the 1970s, the Criterion came close to demise when its site was proposed for redevelopment, but London's theatrical world banded together, and the likes of Sir John Gielgud and Dame Diana Rigg joined vehement protests that saved it from demolition. The nearest Underground stations to the Criterion are Piccadilly Circus or Leicester Square, and several buses stop in the vicinity. The theatre's current production is the Hitchcock classic, The 39 Steps, which opened in 2006 and continues to garner rave reviews.
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