Les Misérables to move theatres to make way for Queen's Theatre renovations
The move is part of a wider wave of restoration work in Cameron Mackintosh's theatres
Cameron Mackintosh has announced a round of renovation and structural improvements for a series of his West End theatres.
After the restoration of the Victoria Palace Theatre ahead of the opening of Hamilton, Wyndham's, Noël Coward, Gielgud, the Novello and the Queen's Theatre will all undergo improvement.
Work to Wyndham's, Noël Coward, Gielgud will take place during breaks of the shows running within them. The Queen's Theatre, which hosts the long running Les Misérables will also close, but Mackintosh announced that Les Misérables will not break its run.
In a statement, the company said: "Plans are being finalised to ensure that this legendary musical success will continue its run in the West End during the Queen's Theatre closure and announcement with these arrangements will be made in the autumn."
The first of the theatres to undergo improvements will be Wyndham's, which will commence early next month. Then the Noël Coward and Gielgud will follow in 2019, with the Queen's Theatre works taking place in 2019-20.
The Novello Theatre has already had over 50 per cent of the required work completed and the remainder will be carried out without any loss of performance.
The Queen's Theatre also requires major renovation backstage and the closure will allow a chance to restore William Sprague's original boxes and loges. The works come after historic plaster and paintwork conservationist Richard Ireland and structural engineer Chris Boydell of Connisbee inspected the buildings. Four of the five playhouses, all designed by Edwardian architect William Sprague, will close for a period of two to four months.
Mackintosh said: "Having just completed the hugely rewarding but very expensive restoration of the Victoria Palace, news of the timing of these works which are necessary to ensure that my other theatres will be in tip top condition for actors, producers and audiences, long after the final curtain has dropped on me, was not the most welcome.
"There are major financial consequences, not just the considerable cost of the capital works, but the knock on costs of closing these theatres for several months will run into many millions of pounds. However, I love these buildings and luckily my success as a producer has given me the resources to preserve their life for another 100 years - so that the show can go on and on and on!"