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Performance Times Ticket Prices Where to Buy Tickets  Seating Plan Seat Opinions Getting Here

OLD VIC THEATRE

ELECTRA (play)
Previews from 20th September, opens 1st October 2014. Ends 20th December 2014.
Captioned performances: 30th October 2014 at 7.30pm and 29th November 2014 at 3pm
Audio Described performance: 13th November 2014 at 7.30pm (touch tour 6pm)

Argos, just after the Trojan war. Nothing to do with a fight over American contraceptives in a catalogue store.

This is about a sister and brother avenging the death of their dad at the hands of thier mother and step-dad. Come to think of it, the demography may be the same, notes the monkey..

Frank McGuinness adapts Sophocles for Ian Rickson to direct one Kristin Scott Thomas.



 

Theatremonkey Opinion:

Not available.
 

 

Your Reviews: Add your own by clicking here.
Important: Some reviews below can contain "spoilers" - please don't read if this bothers you!

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Top Performance Times Ticket Prices Where to Buy Tickets  Seating Plan Seat Opinions Getting Here


Performance Schedule:
The monkey advises checking performance times on your tickets and that performances are happening as scheduled, before travelling.

Monday to Saturday at 7.30pm (7pm on 1st October 2014)
Wednesday and Saturday at 3pm and 7.30pm (no 3pm performances on 20th September, 24th September and 1st October 2014)

Extra performance on 30th September 2014 at 3pm.



 

Ticket Prices:

Offers May be available - Click Here

View this information in diagram form


All performances from 1st October 2014 onwards:
Stalls
Rows D to Q: £55 except
"Premium Seats" row C 3 to 9 and 17 to 21; F 9 to 20 and 28 to 37, G 8 to 21 and 28 to 38, H 6 to 23 and 28 to 40, J 5 to 24 and 30 to 45, K 4 to 23 and 30 to 45, L 4 to 25: £85 (note that extra "premium" seats are sometimes added at short notice)
Restricted view row Q 12 and 13: £45
Restricted view row N 30 and 49: £30
Restricted view row M 31, 47; N 31, 37, 38, 41, 42, 47: £21
Restricted view row M 37, 41; N 48: £16

Row F seats 3 to 8 and 22 to 27 are available to those under 25 at £12 per ticket, bookable in advance, but tickets are held for collection at the theatre on the day of performance so that proof of age can be checked. Proof of age includes driving licence or passport. Student Cards are NOT accepted. Unsold seats are sold at £55 to those over 25 when available.

Dress Circle
Rows A to E: £55 except
"Premium Seats" row A 10 to 25: £85 (note that extra "premium" seats are sometimes added at short notice)
Restricted view row A 28; B 9 and 28; C 5, 6, 7, 11, 18, 19, 26, 27, 30, 31, 32; D 4, 5, 6, 10, 17, 27, 30, 31, 32; E 9, 11, 27: £45
Restricted view row A 7, 29; B 7, 8, 29, 30; D 9, 18, 26; E 10, 18, 19, 28: £21


Rows X to Z: £55 except
Row Y 13, 14, 23; Z 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21: £45
Restricted view row Y 24: £30

Row S: £55


Row P 9 to 22: £55
Row P 5 to 8 and 23 to 26; Q 4 to 27 and R 4 to 7 and 24 to 27: £45

Row R 8 to 23, T 8 to 12 and 21 to 25 plus X 3 to 12 and 25 to 33 and Y 1 to 12 and 25 to 36 are available to those under 25 at £12 per ticket, bookable in advance, but tickets are held for collection at the theatre on the day of performance so that proof of age can be checked. Proof of age includes driving licence or passport. Student Cards are NOT accepted. Unsold seats are sold at £45 to those over 25 when available.


Upper Circle
Rows B to G: £30 except:
Restricted view row B 28 to 36; C 5 to 7 and 31 to 33: £21
Restricted view row A 9 to 28: £21

Upper Circle Slip benches
Row X: £16
Row Y: £10

Upper Circle Standing: £7.50 (may not be bookable in advance and only available if all seats are sold out).

Row A 3 to 8 and 29 to 33, plus B 2 to 10 are available to those under 25 at £12 per ticket, bookable in advance, but tickets are held for collection at the theatre on the day of performance so that proof of age can be checked. Proof of age includes driving licence or passport. Student Cards are NOT accepted. Unsold tickets are £21 to the general public.


 



Preview performances from 20th September until 30th September 2014 only:

Stalls
Rows D to Q: £50
Restricted view row Q 12 and 13: £40
Restricted view row N 30 and 49: £25
Restricted view row M 31, 47; N 31, 37, 38, 41, 42, 47: £21
Restricted view row M 37, 41; N 48: £16

Row F seats 3 to 8 and 22 to 27 are available to those under 25 at £12 per ticket, bookable in advance, but tickets are held for collection at the theatre on the day of performance so that proof of age can be checked. Proof of age includes driving licence or passport. Student Cards are NOT accepted. Unsold seats are sold at £50 to those over 25 when available.

Dress Circle
Rows A to E: £50
Restricted view row A 28; B 9 and 28; C 5, 6, 7, 11, 18, 19, 26, 27, 30, 31, 32; D 4, 5, 6, 10, 17, 27, 30, 31, 32; E 9, 11, 27: £40
Restricted view row A 7, 29; B 7, 8, 29, 30; D 9, 18, 26; E 10, 18, 19, 28: £21


Rows X to Z: £50 except
Row Y 13, 14, 23; Z 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21: £40
Restricted view row Y 24: £25

Row S: £50


Row P 9 to 22: £50
Row P 5 to 8 and 23 to 26; Q 4 to 27 and R 4 to 7 and 24 to 27: £40

Row R 8 to 23, T 8 to 12 and 21 to 25 plus X 3 to 12 and 25 to 33 and Y 1 to 12 and 25 to 36 are available to those under 25 at £12 per ticket, bookable in advance, but tickets are held for collection at the theatre on the day of performance so that proof of age can be checked. Proof of age includes driving licence or passport. Student Cards are NOT accepted. Unsold seats are sold at £40 to those over 25 when available.


Upper Circle
Rows B to G: £25 except:
Restricted view row B 28 to 36; C 5 to 7 and 31 to 33: £21
Restricted view row A 9 to 28: £21

Upper Circle Slip benches
Row X: £16
Row Y: £10

Upper Circle Standing: £7.50 (may not be bookable in advance and only available if all seats are sold out).

Row A 3 to 8 and 29 to 33, plus B 2 to 10 are available to those under 25 at £12 per ticket, bookable in advance, but tickets are held for collection at the theatre on the day of performance so that proof of age can be checked. Proof of age includes driving licence or passport. Student Cards are NOT accepted. Unsold tickets are £21 to the general public.


Some details may change, the monkey will update as required.

 

Top Performance Times Ticket Prices Where to Buy Tickets  Seating Plan Seat Opinions Getting Here

Buying Tickets Online:

Other Box Office Information

Tickets offered differ between outlets. Outlets also may offer different seats via their phone and online systems. Offers may be available click here.
Theatre Box Office:
www.oldvictheatre.com the theatre's own website provide the service for this theatre.
This site allows you to choose your seats from those available.

Booking fees per transaction for online bookings:
£1.50 per booking, not per ticket, transaction fee is charged. Cheaper than by telephone.

 

Other Online Choices (with S.T.A.R. genuine ticket agencies):

When the theatre does not have tickets available, it is worth trying the Theatremonkey Ticketshop agency, telephone 020 7420 9778 (0044 207 420 9778 if calling from outside the United Kingdom), which offers £55 seats with an £8.25 booking fee (£4.50 on £30 seats / £7.50 on £50, £3.75 on £25 preview seats) - moderate by agency standards, high by box office ones, but worth trying as they often have some choice available! Note that this system will confirm exact seat numbers prior to purchase. A £1.95 per booking, not per ticket, handling fee may apply on some transactions by telephone. NO handling fee applies for online purchases.

Another alternative is www.seetickets.com / telephone 0870 830 0200 with offers £55 seats with an £8.25 (£7.50 on £50 preview seats) booking fee plus a £2.75 per booking (not per ticket) postal charge. (FREE call if using a BT.com Calling Plan at your chosen times).

Ticketmaster.co.uk offer £55 seats with a £5.25 booking fee (£4.30 on £45, £2.85 on £30, £2 on £21, £1.50 on £16, 95p on £10 seats / £4.75 on £50, £3.80 on £40, £2.40 on £25, £2 on £21, £1.50 on £16, 95p on £10 preview seats), plus a £2.85 per transaction (not per ticket) booking fee. Not all prices are available at all performances - the system will advice at time of enquiry. The usual "select your own seat" function may also not be be available at all performances.

Encore Tickets (telephone 0207 400 1253 / 0044 207 400 1253 if calling from outside the United Kingdom) offer £55 seats with a £15 booking fee (£23 on £85, £8 on £30 seats / £13 on £50, £7 on £25 preview seats). A postage charge of £2.25 per booking, not per ticket may be applied to bookings made from UK addresses more than 5 days before the performance. The "Flexiticket" Exchange Service, allowing FREE transfer / cancellation (credit note up to 12 months) of your booking up to 3 days before the performance is also available for £2.50 per ticket. Discounts and "Meal and Show" packages may also be available. Quality and Value hotel / theatre ticket packages are also available.

Lastminute.com offer £55 seats with a £5 (£3 on £30 seats) booking fee per ticket. NOTE: Seat numbers are NOT available in advance from this company. All seats booked in the same price group will, of course, be together or at the very least be in front or behind each other in the theatre. In the very unlikely event of this not being possible this company will call you and give you the option of cancelling your booking. However if booking in two or more price bands, you will not be sat together. Please DO NOT purchase if this is unacceptable to you, as all tickets are sold subject to this condition. Discounts and "Meal and Show" packages may also be available. Quality and Value hotel / theatre ticket packages are also available.

 

ALSO SEE Tickettree.com for great value "hotel and theatre ticket" packages.

Other Independent S.T.A.R. ticket agencies may also offer an alternative choice of seats.


 

Box Office Information:
Tickets offered differ between outlets. Outlets also may offer different seats via their phone and online systems. Offers may be available click here.
Theatre Box Office:
Telephone: 0844 871 7628
Operated by the Old Vic Theatre group's appointed ticket agency, Ticketzone.

Booking fees per transaction for telephone bookings:
£2.50 per booking, not per ticket, transaction fee is charged. This is more expensive than booking online.

 

For personal callers or by post: Waterloo Road, London. SE1 8NB
No booking fee for personal callers.

Special Access Needs Customers:
Wheelchair users and other registered disabled theatregoers can book their seats on 0871 297 5477 and enquire about concessionary prices that may be available to them. The wheelchair users line connects directly to the theatre chain central phoneroom in London during working hours. See Notes.

www.oldvictheatre.com is the official theatre website. A very good auditorium photograph is available here. E-mail the theatre at: info@oldvictheatre.com 

 

 
 
Top Performance Times Ticket Prices Where to Buy Tickets  Seating Plan Seat Opinions Getting Here

Theatre Seat Opinions:
Please remember that cheaper seats often do not offer the same view / location quality as top price ones, and that ticket prices are designed to reflect this difference.

NOTE:  the theatre is in its "In The Round" layout.

 

 

Seating Plan Diagram

Stalls Dress Circle Upper Circle Notes
STALLS 

Layout:
A stage in the centre of the auditorium, with two large blocks of seats, plus four short rows either side, back into where the stage boxes were.

The main seat block is a grandstand style arrangement, split into two by an aisle, rising from stage level to just below dress circle height.

The other main block is on the original stage, again a grandstand in a single block.

Rows C and D are flat on floor, parallel to the sides of the theatre, facing the stage. Behind them, rows E and F are slightly raised on steps.

Row C is a padded bench with no arm rests.

Legroom:
The front row has nothing in front except the slightly raised floor of the stage. Seats F 7 and 8, G 19 to 21, G 28, G38, K 30, Q 12 and 13 have nothing in front. K45 has space for one leg to stretch.

Row B is very low to the ground, if used, and C not much higher.

Almost all rows have legroom acceptable to all but those over 6ft or so. Rows D and E have a little more. Row N has considerably less legroom than the rest, just comfortable for a 5ft 7 monkey...

Seats M37 and M41 have pillars three-quarters of the way along in front of them. You will need to put your legs to one side of them.

 

Choosing Seats in General:
Central rows K to N 9 to 20 are the ones to aim for. In the main block, at least you probably will see more of the actors' faces than elsewhere.

Around them, seats beside, in front and behind are almost as good. Just be aware that the outermost to seats from row K back have no aisle next to them and may feel claustrophobic - also the side rail at the front of the block may catch the eye. It isn't view-blocking, just present.

Q12 and 13 have a rail beside them on the central aisle, but are at least discounted and have extra legroom - well worth thinking about, feels the monkey.

Seats on row F, and C at the sides, have the legroom advantage. Still, they are bench seats - so a larger person may make your investment seem squeezed. The row behind is not raised - again, the larger theatregoer could affect your evening.

At the sides of the stage, the four rows here recede into the original box space. Fair views if nobody too tall is in front - there isn't a lot of raise (rake) to any row, though. At top price, the monkey would look to the main blocks first, it feels.

The wheelchair space beside the main block has an excellent view.

In the new block, where the stage was, the rake is fine and all rows except N have decent legroom. Do choose central seats, though, as those on the ends lose sightlines to the set.

Pillars produce restricted view seats in rows M and N. Good value all, the monkey would take, if taller than 5ft 7, M31 then M47 then N31 then M37 in that order. If taller, it would take all row M seats before N. The slightly more expensive restricted view seats are also good value, N 32 then N46 first, then N39 and N40. Again, be aware if taller than 5ft 7 that your legroom isn't great - check out similarly priced seats in the dress circle rows C or D instead perhaps. Not E, though, as the legroom there is similar.



General Hazard Notes:
Booking before a production opens means you may not be in the front row, as they add them at short notice.

Rows C, D, F and G don’t have a rake to speak of.

Sound in stage block seats has been known to be less than perfect - too quiet with actors facing away from it.

The stage block is a wood and metal construction. Anyone moving about in the rows above makes an echoing distracting noise.

Pillars, as discussed above.

Changes for the current production:
The front row is F in the main blocks, C at the sides.

Premium seats on row F, and C at the sides, have the legroom advantage, for those willing to pay. Still, they are bench seats and very low - so a larger person may make your £85 investment seem squeezed. The row behind in the main blocks is the same price and not raised - again, the larger theatregoer could affect your evening. If you must go "premium" take seats in F then H in the block facing the stage first. At least the actors face you more there, the monkey feels. Most of the stalls - back to L in the main block, J in the facing block - are at this high price. The monkey says no more...

Row K 24 and 25 are cheaper than usual, at top price, as they are slightly restricted by having a rail in view. Not a terrible way to be closer to the stage, the monkey feels.

An aisle has been inserted into the block on stage. This gives N39 to 41 a view straight down the aisle, and pillar seats M 37 and 41 a bit more space to the sides of them, and also N 27 and 28 and 51 and 52 extra space.

Extra restricted view seats on rows M and N are worth a look - N 31 and 47, M29; and M 31, 41 and 47 in particular.

Reader Comments:
From the October 2008 "In The Round" season
"Rows F and G: These are not raked; so when you are lucky enough to have the cast facing you, you have to dodge around the person in front."

"Row K: I was lucky to be in row K well near the front of the stalls twice and once in C - right up next to the round stage - total immersion and a great theatre experience."

"L11 and 12: "The Crucible" (July 2014). Those seats were great. The view of the stage was excellent, especially for act II. Act I is better from the other block, but it doesn't mean that actors are facing away all the time, just that the props are closer to the other block. However, you are in the right block to see Richard Armitage take off his shirt and some actors will go up the stairs next to you during act I. I would recommend this block rather than the other. The theatre is the most comfortable I have visited so far, the play is very long but the seats were perfect and there was air conditioning."

"L30, 31 and 32: "The Crucible" (July 2014). These seats are on the far side, so we had to cross the stage. Not a problem, but it's not obvious or signposted so we had to ask the way. Legroom was plentiful, and the seat was comfortable. Considering the length of the play, this was much appreciated. This is done in the round, but in this case it works. Though some seats have restricted views due to the set. My seat was fine, but my friend on the aisle did have to lean over a bit to see action on the far left of the stage - the set includes narrow staircases at the left and right of that side of the set. But apart from that, the view was great. And the staging meant that nothing was missed."

"M31: "The Crucible" (July 2014). I still can't get over that seat only cost £21. The view wasn't really restricted in my opinion. Ok, there's a thin rail (I wouldn't even call it a pole!) directly in front of you, but it didn't get in the way of my experience at all."

"M44, 45 and 46: "The Crucible" (July 2014). Good seats. The act I is perfect from this block. But you will miss a few things in act II, not much though. And a lot actors are coming and going by the aisle of this block. I prefer the other block but this one is pretty good as well. It is true that if something fell on the floor in the circle above, it's quite noisy, but it only happened once. The seats are very comfortable but it is a little hotter than the other block because there are lights just above."
 

 

Stalls Boxes 

Layout:
Two large boxes either side of the stage at stalls level.

Legroom:
Good on movable chairs, and on the (uncomfortable) ledge.

Choosing Seats in General:
Normally, it is reported that boxes will not be sold. Should they be available it will only be to personal callers at the box office, where any drawbacks can be explained to them.

Value is poor at top price, not much better at second price, better if at bottom price. Choose the centre stalls – or any other central seat in the main auditorium - first.

General Hazard Notes:
The view from all boxes is angled.

At the very least, the rear quarter of the stage not visible.

Lighting / sound fixtures may further affect views.

Changes for the current production:
Not in use. Converted into rows of seats - see above.

Reader Comments:
None.
 


DRESS CIRCLE 

Layout:
The Upper Circle overhangs the Dress Circle at row C. Row E misses the top of the stage.

A central block, interspersed with pillars in row B, faces the stage.

Three rows of seats extend along the sides of the theatre between the circle and stage.

A further block of seats have been installed on the usual stage, facing the rest of the auditorium.

Legroom:
Fine in almost all seats for all but the tallest (over 6ft) in rows B, C and D; uncomfortable for those over 5ft 7 or so in rows A, E, S and X for everyone.

The high raised "bar bench" style affairs used in side rows Y and Z provide more legroom as the tall can stand up, but shorter folk (under 5ft 8 or so) may find their legs hanging in mid-air in the high seats - as a reader noted of row Y.

In the new stage block, rows P and Q have no legroom for those over 5ft 6 - P is particularly cramped. R is another "bar bench" with ample legroom for those willing to either half stand or dangle their legs.

 

Choosing Seats in General:
Centre Block:
The problem with the "in the round" layout is that the stalls are built up to circle level, thus placing circle users almost in the "rear stalls." The monkey would take stalls at the same price first for a closer view at the same price. Still, the circle is elevated and does provide a pleasing overall look at the stage.

In the central block row B seats 12 to 25 offer the best view and comfort, followed by row A 9 to 27, and C 13 to 17 and 21 to 24. It is worth choosing prime stalls over the Dress Circle however for comfort, view and proximity to the stage.

Central block seats designated restricted view are row A 7, 8, 28, and 29; Row B 7 to 9 and 28 to 30; row C 5 to 8, 11, 19, 26 and 29 to 32; row D 4 to 8, 9, 10, 17, 18 and 25 to 32; row E 4 to 11, 18, 19 and 26 to 34.

Of these, row B seats are least affected - looking through a safety rail or three - and are worth considering if the Dress Circle is a must and you need more than one seat on a budget.

Restricted view row C 19 and 29 and E 4 and 26 seem slightly expensive, and the monkey gives them an "avoid" rating as a result – cheaper, the view would have made them a bargain.

D9 is average value at least, as unlike the others, you don't have to pay AND lean in this one. The other pillar restricted seats in C to D are also pretty good (as are those in E for the under 5ft 6 brigade) but do remember seats on the stage with similar issues are closer to the action for the same money.

Row E is expensive in unrestricted seats between 10 to 28. Cramped, and the back row at top price, it isn't a total "avoid," but it isn't great value. E 13 to 16 and 21 to 24 are pretty much the pick here. Consider rear stalls for comfort or front Upper Circle for closer view (with bar, though) at the same cost.

Side Blocks:
Rows X, Y and Z are designated restricted view due to a combination of pillars and a viewing angle that makes between a fifth and a half of the stage invisible.

Theatremonkey likes to mooch (if the theatre is selling them to monkeys its age) in Y seats 17 to 20.

Row Z 16 to 21 are the same price as Y, and are both second price and second choice as these are fair rather than bargain value alas. On the other hand, there's a pair of cheap seats right next to them in row Y - fair or just about, for view if not comfort.

The short legged will also find row X 15 to 22 good value after Y and Z. The view in these seats, and comfort is not great, but the value is good enough to justify the choice.

General Hazard Notes:
Supporting pillars affect the view from some seats in row C back.

Double height bars at the ends of the aisles obstruct the view of the first three seats in each row of the centre block.

Rows Y and Z and don't have arm rests.

Changes for the current production:
A few seats in row A are now "premium." Good seats nearby, but may suit the wealthy in pocket and shorter in leg. If wealthy and tall, take stalls, though - just not the ones in front of the monkey, please...

Seats at the ends of rows B to D are only just fair at second price, it feels.

The long rows X, Y and Z now look down on the playing area. Those closest to the main seating block are always a safe bet at second price, and still one now, the monkey feels. The others, kept for students, perhaps more for those willing to accept a bench place rather than a seat if sold them at second price. In that case, they should look at row R first.

At top price the ends of row X seems expensive, as the legroom isn't good, but at least they are close to the stage. Behind it, the £35 Z 16 to 21 are fair value if you can accept the bench "leg dangle," it feels.

...Rows P, Q and R have been added where the stage is, facing the rest of the theatre. A reader says of them, from last time they were installed there,
"Rows P, Q and R of the Dress Circle give you a view of the stage through the regular proscenium arch. EACH of these rows have the safety rail that obscures the vision of people with average size torsos, meaning that you have to lean right forward to watch the action. You also have to look down at quite an angle which is doubly tiring. If you are unlucky enough to sit in row P you have the added discomfort of no leg room and the joy of the row behind using the back of your seat as a foot rest because they are having to lean forward too. All this discomfort means that everyone is fidgeting to get comfortable and the nature of such a temporary structure means that the struts and girders creak with all this movement."
The monkey adds, for 2014 that row Q is as bad for all issues above. Row R, being those raised benches, is at least slightly more comfortable. Do avoid end seats in all rows, as the safety rails are in view.

Central row P at top price is for the wealthy diamond-mining dwarf with a head for heights only, feels the monkey. At second price, the rest of the seats are very expensive too - those in second price R, though, at least don't have the legroom issue (just be prepared to climb and strap into your spot on the benches... and avoid the outer pairs of seats as they look through rails.

Also be aware that to get to rows P to R, you go through the stalls, behind the new stage block and up steep flights of stairs to your seats. On the plus side, there are extra toilets at the foot of those stairs that only those seated in P to R will know about...
 

Reader Comments:
WITH THE STAGE IN THE USUAL POSITION. The monkey notes that most comments will apply to this layout too, as the stage is where the front stalls usually are. It leaves details here for reader information, and welcomes comments on the new layout as readers experience it.
“Row B: (Julian Taylor). Plenty of leg room and an excellent view of the stage."

"B8 and B9: "Hedda Gabler" (September 2012). ‘Restricted view’ £21. We were really pleased with the seats, I was a bit worried as they are less than half the price of the £50 tickets next to us but despite the small bar we thought they were very good value for money and I would definitely sit here again. The seats feel really close to the stage and the central block of the theatre doesn’t have much of a curve so we weren’t to the side at all. The view of the front left part of the stage (about 10-15%) is partially obstructed by the small bar however not much of the play takes place here and occasionally we just had to move our head slightly to get a full view."

“C18 and 19: “Richard III,” (Chris B). The circle feels quite distant from the stage but does offer a very nice raised up overview of the whole performance. As with most of the seats at the Old Vic, there is legroom to spare. C18 is classed as restricted but in reality there is roughly a 5 inch wide pillar in front of your seat that is very easy to see around, especially if you can lean slightly over to the person next to you. And you get a discount on the ticket price.”

“C26 and 27: “Kiss me Kate,” (Chris B). The view is excellent from C26, clear and almost uninterrupted (a very small slice if the very right hand side of the stage is missed, although this doesn't detract from Kiss me Kate), if a little far from the stage to truly engage. And only marginally restricted from C27. There is a pillar in front of that seat, only about 6 inches in diameter that is quite easy to see around if you lean slightly. And the vastly cheaper price certainly sweetens the deal. There is plenty of legroom too, as with most of the seats at the Old Vic.”

"C30 and C31: (David Bone). As well as the pillars in the circle, at the front of the access aisles there are metal crash barriers, I guess put there as a safety measure to prevent the late comer who is running down the steps to get to his seat at the front of the circle from slipping and ending up in the stalls (!). Anyway, from our seats one of these crash barriers was right in front of us, breaking up our view of the stage. It wasn't a prohibitive problem but I wouldn't have accepted these seats at the price had I known."

"D9: "Noises Off" (December 2011), (Taljaard). At £15 it was a real bargain. About 2% of the right hand side of the stage was blocked but very little of the action takes place there so it was not a problem."

“D17: At second price. It is rather interesting place. The Pillar is in the view, but not in front of you (It would be if you sit in D18). To avoid it, you have to lean to your left little bit. If the play is not "action based" and the set is extremely simple I thought I got a good deal. Not sure though if there was some action to your right how you would feel. Anyway, to sum it up. Annoying rather than fatal. So, don't dismiss it, and give it a good thought. The legroom is good/very good. I am 5' 10""

"Row X: "Noises Off" (November 2011). Two seats were £35, the others £20 because they were apparently restricted view, though there was nothing to spoil anyone's enjoyment. My one complaint though is that my hearing is starting to deteriorate and a missed a lot of the dialogue - partly through the laughter and partly because the acoustics were not that great. If your hearing is poor, sit near the front or buy a hearing aid!!!"

"X19 and 20: "Sweet Bird of Youth" (August 2013): We moved to these after the interval because they were empty. These have a better view than the seats further along the side, as you don't need to lean forward to see the whole stage, although it's still slightly to the side. They're not a bad cheaper alternative to more central Dress Circle seats. The view is better than the ones at the back of the stalls in the same price band."

"X22 and 23: "Sweet Bird of Youth" (August 2013): Bought these as under 25 tickets so only paid £12, for which they were great value. *But* if you sit normally in your seat, about a third of the stage is obstructed by the barrier. There is a cushioned arm rest on the barrier, so you can lean and see the full stage, but it's obviously not ideal. *We moved up to X19-20 after the interval because they were empty*"

“Y1 to 3: the view from the seats is ok, but a little moving about was needed. I wouldn't suggest those seats (we actually had Y2/3) for a play etc as about half the stage is 'missing' but for cabaret happening centre stage, they are great value.”

"Y16: £20 plus £2.50 booking fees. I wanted to buy a better seat, but this was the best available. I have to say that I was very pleasantly surprised with the seat. I am not sure how things might be for other plays with too many actors and/or bigger set, but for my one, the view is very clear. It is true that you sit little bit sideways, but not really a big deal. However, a word of caution. I think the lower you get, the worse will be, because the angle gets smaller. The worst will be those near the pillar. Legroom is O.K. (I am 5ft 10/11). Overall, taking the price into account, very good seat."

"Y28 and 29: "Hedda Gabler" (September 2012). These are amongst the strangest theatre seats we have ever experienced. They are akin to bar stools, sitting very tall (they have an inbuilt footrest!), meaning that if you are a shorter theatregoer (like my wife who is 5ft 1/2in tall), your feet cannot touch the ground - or indeed the footrest, meaning you have to support yourself on the back of the seat in front.

The seats also aim slightly away from the stage! This, combined with the horseshoe shape of the theatre, means you lose sight of perhaps half the stage unless you lean well forward onto the (cushioned) rail in front of you. But to do this you would need the agreement of other sufferers in that section.

For the second half, we transferred to the row in front as it was empty and the view improved considerably. But you still lost sight of about a quarter of the stage.

These seats are only to be considered if subject to a substantial discount (like the £10 per seat offer we found), but even then the dire viewing angle has to be strongly considered before purchasing."

 

Dress Circle Boxes

Layout:
Two large boxes either side of the stage.

Legroom:
Row S is very cramped for those over 5ft 6.

Row T is a raised bench, so those willing to dangle or almost stand will be happy here.

Choosing Seats in General:
Skip row S unless short - the view is fine if you are, excruciating if not.

Row T looks down at a sharp angle on the stage. Not a bad bet if you have to see the show and there's nothing else left, though.

General Hazard Notes:
Lighting / sound fixtures may further affect views.

Changes for the current production:
See above, noting that the boxes are almost level with the sides of the stage.

Reader Comments:
None.

 


UPPER CIRCLE
Called the LILIAN BAYLIS CIRCLE in this theatre. Named in honour of the dynamic Old Vic manager. This lady believed in bringing quality theatre to the masses at affordable prices; Theatremonkey salutes her.

Layout:
This circle is high above the ground.

Like the Dress Circle a central block faces the stage.

Two rows of seats extend along the sides of the theatre between the circle and stage. These are concrete steps converted to benches by padding, and without anything except a rail to lean on in row X.

Standing places are allocated behind the side block rows.

Legroom:
Stretching it to reach "adequate" in all seats for those over 5ft 6, worst in rows A, G and X.

Go 10 or more seats in from the aisle for maximum legroom - around an extra two inches, in all rows A to F.

Row X has least legroom. Row P is higher off the ground, so those under 5ft 6 may find feet dangling, and the taller may feel able to half stand. It is possible to turn sideways facing the stage in Y 1 and 36, creating extra legroom. Also in Y18 and 19 - except you'd be facing the wrong way...

 

Choosing Seats in General:
Centre Block:
Row A seats 14 to 26 are normally sold at third price. If the bar, legroom and height don't bother you, they are worth thinking about as the alternatives to identically prices rear stalls and Dress Circle seats.

Row A seats 3 and 33 are a fair restricted view choice only if legroom is not an issue; otherwise: avoid.

Behind that, Row B seats 10 to 28 offer the best view here, followed by row C 10 to 28. At third price though, consider paying a little more for the rear stalls first if legroom is a priority. The monkey picks the stalls on this one.

Rows F and G feel a long way from the stage in the monkey opinion.

Side Blocks:
Row X is the front row, P the central and S the standing positions behind P.

All seats are designated restricted view with between a fifth and half of the stage not visible - and the bars don't help.

Seats 15 to 23 in all rows are a bargain bin choice - choose row P - or S for a tiny bit more comfort if you don't mind standing.

Those on tight budgets should look at side blocks if the purse is not stretching further. Rails and tight viewing angles make the last few seats in every row distinctly average value.

General Hazard Notes:
A bar runs across the front of the circle, affecting the view slightly in rows A and X.

A double height bar is found at all aisle ends. Pedants might want to avoid the aisle seat (and two next to them) here.

Less comfortable, narrower, seating is used in the centre block of this circle than elsewhere in the auditorium.

Spotlight equipment can replace G 21 to 23. Purists might like to avoid G 20 and 24 and F 20 to 24. Most won't notice, though.

Side seats are "bench style" without backs - arrive early to stake out your portion!

Changes for the current production:
With the stage "in the round" row A and the ends of rows B to D get a restricted view where the circle edge cuts into the stage. Row B 12 to 10 and 28 to 30 are worth a glance at the price, as is A for the short, feels the monkey.

The side bench seats get improved views, looking down onto the stage rather than totally sideways. Still very uncomfortable, and there are far better "restricted view" seats than row X at the same price elsewhere in the stalls and dress circle. So, final budget choice - and take Y over X as it has the same views for £6 less...

 

Reader Comments:
SOME FROM THE STAGE IN THE USUAL POSITION. The monkey notes that most comments will apply to this layout too, as the stage is where the front stalls usually are. It leaves details here for reader information, and welcomes comments on the new layout as readers experience it.

“A16 and 17: "The Crucible" (August 2014 - "In The Round" layout). Do not consider these seats if you are over 5 feet six. The leg room is non existent. These seats are directly facing the stage, with the safety rail in front. This wasn't an issue for us as we could watch the action underneath the rail but it might be for someone taller. Also the seats were just too high and too far from the stage."

"B14 to 17: Perfect seats.”

"B19: 'Cause Celebre' (April 2011). Right in the middle, I was quite happy with the seat. Leg room was adequate, and the seat comfortable. You get an excellent view of the stage --- of course, one is a bit far away from the stage, but I didn't feel that distracted from my enjoyment in any way. I would choose that seat again. I certainly don't think the front row of the upper circle is worth the extra £10 GBP charged! In short, Theatremonkey's coding of B19 as a green seat was spot on."
 


 

 

Notes
Total 1067 seats.

Air-conditioned Auditorium.

Guide dogs can be dogsat by staff. Wheelchair users have access via a portable ramp over a step at a firedoor, to a decent seat in the stalls. Access to an adapted toilet through the corridor leading into the stalls boxes. More information from the theatre box office on 0844 871 7628 / 18001 0844 871 7628 (textphone) / 18002 0844 871 7628 (hearing person). Operated by the Old Vic Theatre group's own phoneroom from 9am until 7.30pm Monday to Friday, 9am to 4pm Saturday and 9.30am to 4pm Sunday.

A "venue access guide" from the team who created book "Theatremonkey: A Guide to London's West End," is available to download in PDF format by clicking here.

No food except Ice cream and confectionery.

Three bars; Stalls, Dress Circle and Upper Circle.

4 toilets; Stalls 1 gents 2 cubicles, 1 ladies 5 cubicles, 1 unisex disabled; Upper Circle 1 gents 2 cubicles, 1 ladies 7 cubicles. On stage, behind the new seating block, there are further ladies and gents toilets. Worth knowing, as nobody but those seated in rows P to R in the dress circle will discover them otherwise, notes the monkey (who of course includes its readers in this bit of info too!).

 

Top Performance Times Ticket Prices Where to Buy Tickets  Seating Plan Seat Opinions Getting Here

Getting to this Theatre
Find this theatre on a Street Map
Nearest Underground Station Buses Car Park
Nearest Underground Station:
Waterloo - Bakerloo Line (brown), Jubilee Line (silver gray), Northern Line (black). Also a main line station.

This station has multiple exits, not clearly marked, so be careful! The best route is as follows:

From the platforms, follow signs for the "Waterloo Road" exit.

On leaving the glass doors, turn right. You can see the corner of the theatre - it is on the opposite corner of the next crossroads you come to. Just cross the road and walk to your right.

______________

If, in error, you left by the "South Bank" and / or "Shell Exit" and / or "York Road Exit" from the platform to the surface, you will be on York Road.

Cross the road and turn to your left. Walk to the corner and take the next turning, a grotty street called Morpeth Road. Walk up it. At the very end, turn right. Walk on and you will come to the station exit you wish you had taken!

You will now be able to see the corner of the theatre - ahead and on the opposite corner to the left of the next crossroads you come to. Just cross the road and walk straight on to reach it.


For mobility impaired audience members,
the Society of London Theatre provide a "photo map" - illustrated walking route to this venue from a near landmark and also Waterloo Station (the nearest fully accessible station) on their website www.officiallondontheatre.co.uk, via the theatre's listing page on that site.

 

Buses:
1, 4, 68, 176, 188, 501 all stop nearby.

 

Car Park:
Parking on street after 6 pm, or hike from Coin Street. From this car park turn left. If you come to the back of the National Theatre and London Television Studios, wrong way.

Change side of the road and at the corner, turn right. Change side of the road. Keep walking until you come to a large roundabout with a circular building in the centre of it. Follow the pavement around and take the first turning on your left, Waterloo Road.

Walk straight down it, crossing a traffic access road in front of St John's Church, then crossing Exton Street, Alaska Street and Sandell Street. 

The theatre is on the opposite corner of the next crossroads you come to. If instead you come to the front of Waterloo Station, wrong way.

 

Top Performance Times Ticket Prices Where to Buy Tickets  Seating Plan Seat Opinions Getting Here

 

 

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