Haymarket, St. James's, London SW1Y 4QL 020 7087 7762
www.lwtheatres.co.uk - the theatre group's own website provide the service for this theatre.
This site allows seat selection and provides a view of the auditorium too.
Booking fees per ticket:
No booking fees.
Other Online Choices (with genuine S.T.A.R ticket agencies):
Ticket agencies offer an alternative way to buy tickets, with booking fees differing from those charged by the theatre box office itself. They may have seats available or special offers when theatres do not.
Ticket agency prices vary in response to theatres implementing “dynamic pricing” - which alters prices according to demand for a particular performance. Prices stated here were compiled as booking originally opened, current prices are advised at time of enquiry.
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 seats with a booking fee of £13.50 on £75 seats (£18 on £99.50, £10 on £55, £8.25 on £45, £7.25 on £40, £6 on £32.50, £4.50 on £25 tickets Monday to Thursday / £35 on £175, £25 on £125, £19.90 on £99.50, £17.90 on £89.50, £13.90 on £69.50, £11.90 on £59.50, £9.90 on £49.50, £7 on £35, £5 on £25 seats Friday and Saturday). Moderate by agency standards, though higher than box office prices, but worth trying! Note that this system will confirm exact seat numbers prior to purchase. Meal and Show Ticket Deals may also be available, click here. 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 which offers tickets with a fee of £9.38 on £75 seats (£12.44 on £99.50, £6.88 on £55, £5.63 on £45, £5 on £40, £4.06 on £32.50, £3.13 on £25 tickets Monday to Thursday / £35 on £175, £25 on £125, £19.90 on £99.50, £17.90 on £89.50, £13.90 on £69.50, £11.90 on £59.50, £9.90 on £49.50, £7 on £35, £5 on £25 seats Friday and Saturday) booking fee per ticket; and £2.75 per booking, not per ticket handling fee.
Another alternative is Ticketmaster.co.uk who offer seats with a booking fee of £11.25 on £75 seats (£15 on £99.50, £8.25 on £55, £6.75 on £45, £6 on £40, £5 on £32.50, £3.75 on £25 tickets Monday to Thursday / £34.75 on £175, £24.50 on £125, £19.50 on £99.50, £17.50 on £89.50, £13.75 on £69.50, £11.75 on £59.50, £9.75 on £49.50, £7 on £35, £5 on £25 seats Friday and Saturday), plus £1 for box office collection of tickets. This system allows you to choose your own seats from the selection the company has available.
Encore Tickets (telephone 0207 400 1253 / 0044 207 400 1253 if calling from outside the United Kingdom) offer £21 on £75 seats (£28.50 on £99.50, £16 on £55, £13 on £45, £12 on £40, £7.50 on £32.50, £7 on £25 tickets Monday to Thursday / £34 on £175, £24 on £125, £19.50 on £99.50, £17.50 on £89.50, £13.50 on £69.50, £11.50 on £59.50, £9.50 on £49.50, £7 on £35, £5 on £25 seats Friday and Saturday). A postage charge of £1.45 per booking, not per ticket may be applied to bookings made from UK addresses more than 5 days before the performance.
Quality and Value hotel / theatre ticket packages are also available.
London Theatre Direct offer £15.75 on £75 seats (£21 on £99.50, £11.50 on £55, £9.50 on £45, £8.50 on £40, £6.75 on £32.50, £5.25 on £25 tickets Monday to Thursday / £36.75 on £175, £26.25 on £125, £21 on £99.50, £18.75 on £89.50, £14.50 on £69.50, £12.50 on £59.50, £10.50 on £49.50, £7.25 on £35, £5.25 on £25 seats Friday and Saturday). There is a £1 per booking, not per ticket, transaction fee for collecting tickets from the box office before your performance. Alternatively, if time allows, there is a postage to your home option, costing £2.95 (£4.95 to non-UK addresses) per booking, not per ticket. Optional Ticket Insurance is also available. Discounts and Meal and Show Packages may also be available.
Telephone: 020 7087 7762
Operated by See Tickets on behalf of the venue.
Booking fees per ticket for telephone bookings:
No booking fees.
For personal callers or by post:
Haymarket, London, SW1Y 4QR
No booking fee for personal callers.
Special Access Needs Customers:
Wheelchair users and other registered disabled theatregoers can book their seats and enquire about concessionary prices that may be available to them on 020 7087 7966.
www.lwtheatres.co.uk is the official venue website.
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.
A warning on some booking sites states that due to the nature of the staging of current production, 'The Phantom Of The Opera' all seats at every price may not have full view of all action. Theatremonkey considers this reasonable comment.
A reader says,
"Her Majesty’s theatre is beautifully acoustic, and most of the stalls and dress circle benefit from almost no amplified sound, which is a rarity."
The Dress Circle overhangs the Stalls at row G; this affects the view of the top of the stage from seats at the edges of the stalls from row J, and central stalls from row N back.
Rows A to F form a single block curving in front of the stage. A central aisle then splits rows from G back into two sections.
Adequate for those of average height (around 5 ft 10 or so) in all seats except row B and restricted view seats Q 14 and 21.
The end seat in rows E, F, G and N have little or nothing in front of them as rows do not quite stretch across the entire seat.
For those who are taller, reader Mark Hunter (6ft 4) warns very strongly that almost all stalls seats are VERY uncomfortable. He reports that the modern "flat backs" to the seats mean there is no space to move a leg into (the old curved seats allow taller people to do this) and the arms on the seats also restricted him and prevented a comfortable evening. Mark had centre aisle seats too - so no help there.
The monkey gets many comments about this show and updates advice accordingly - asking that readers take all viewpoints into account when deciding for themselves.
Row B is cramped, with B 10, 11 and 12 sold cheaply as the conductor is in view. Popular with fans of the show, who know that the central seats have the best of the poor legroom.
The front stalls rows D to G offer the best seats in the house. Ignore the first and last two seats in each row (unless needing legroom) to get a good central view, but choose most of the rest of these rows first as the best return on your top price investment.
Rows H to K 7 to 21 are next best as top price investments, then L 7 to 21 if nothing else is left. The rest of the top price seats offer diminishing value for money and are best left in the monkey's opinion.
Row N sees the first of the famous pillars appear. No noticeable impact is noted on seats in row N 4 to 25, row O 7 to 25 and row P 8 to 25. Of this bunch, within the normal pricing structure, the monkey feels that row N seats 8 to 24 and O seats 10 to 25 offer decent value. The rest of the lower priced seats are dotted among pillars. The view is not classed as restricted, but at second price the value for money is suspect.
Seats actually behind a pillar go much more cheaply, often sold on the day to the returns queue, as nobody will risk buying them normally. Theatremonkey chooses, in order, O 4 and 29 where the pillars line up with the edge of the stage, affecting only 10% of the view, Q 14 and 21 which have pillars directly in front and can be peered around - legroom is iffy though, S 1,2, 23,24 which all offer an 80% view of the stage, then S 12 and 13, offering a 80% view. Check Dress Circle recommendations too before booking.
As an example of how opinions differ: if you are relaxed about restrictions, R12 is fine according to one reader / awful according to another. The usual monkey advice applies: ask for restricted view seats if you are seeking to have a cheap visit or get in to a normally sold out performance at the last minute. The ones highlighted above are value for money for those on a tight budget with a sense of adventure. They are NOT for the comfort seeker or bargain hunter. In this case you just get what you pay for. Remember too that the "red" rating highlights something to think about, rather than "avoid."
A wheelchair can replace stalls seat S12 or users can transfer to any aisle seat. Fair value with a restricted view. About 80% of the stage is visible. Other aisle seats offer better views, but as wheelchair places go, S12 is pretty good - equal to other seats around it.
The sound desk is on its own against the wall facing down the centre aisle behind row S. No problems for anybody, feels the monkey.
Row B has particularly limited legroom.
Pillars affect views from some seats from row O back.
Fan behaviour can be distracting for the less devoted... the cheaper and / or nearer the front, the more likely the extreme reactions.
The view of the top of the stage is important for 'The Phantom Of The Opera'. In fairness to the producers they have priced any seat without a full view of the stage as less than top price.
Seats F 7 to 22, plus G to K 9 to 20 are sold at premium prices Monday to Thursday, with seats as far forward as row B added Friday, Saturday and "peak dates." The view is excellent here, whether you wish to spend the extra is totally your choice, feels the monkey... Friday and Saturday, take G 5, 6, 23 and 24 first, then the same in rows behind if possible.
Outermost seats K to M 1, 2, 27 and 28 rise to top price. Skip them, feels the monkey.
Central row O 9 to 24 and P 10 to 23 are top price - they were previously second. You'll miss more than you would here than from other top price seats... take them as a last choice for the money, feels the monkey. The two cheaper seats either side of these in both rows are far better value, it feels.
“Stalls: (William Cooper). My personal feeling here is avoid the stalls, they are too close and you do not get an overall view. At top price, go for Dress Circle."
"Stalls: (Brittany). The seats are so close together I was basically cuddling strangers, and there was absolutely no room for anyone to walk past you down the row, forcing everyone to have to stand up and get out of their seat any time someone needed to get by."
“Stalls: (Becky, Pontefract). Make sure you're sat in the first seven rows of the stalls or the first three of the dress circle. These make lots of difference to the quality of viewing! The last time we had the front row centre and the chandelier was terrifying!"
"Row B: (Chris). Our biggest mistake with this show was not to note the seat numbers to avoid. We had 2 seats in row B of stalls (front row), what a nightmare, No leg room at all!!!!!! People next to us were really annoyed especially as these are top price seats!"
“Row B: (Cheryl). ”I always sit in the stalls as I think you get the best views, but wouldn't sit on the front row again due to a stiff neck!!"
“Row B: We were in Row B, which is the first row, I am only 5' 2" and my knees were crushed against a low black wall between me and the orchestra, sit further back for a much better view. (The monkey notes that many fans are keen on this row).
“Row B: (George). I saw recently that you'd changed row B in the stalls at Her Majesty's Theatre to red... I've sat there many times (in 11, 12 and 13 on separate occasions) and I've never had a problem... I'm about 5"7."
"Row B: (Fiona). I sat in a premium-priced seat in the stalls on my first visit, and for the second right on the front row, (I decided on this because I had the misfortune lately to end up behind some pretty tall people when sitting further back, which can somewhat ruin the enjoyment even in top-priced seats!). I had worried I would be too near, but as the stage is not so high as it is in productions such as 'We Will Rock You' at the Dominion Theatre was, for me it was PERFECT (in spite of less leg room than usual on a front row) and wonderful to be so close and to see all the facial expressions of the performers!"
"B5: right in front of the orchestra, with a wooden partition between row B and the orchestra pit. For those with long legs, this might be uncomfortable as there is no option to tuck your feet under the seat in front; at 5ft 10”, I found it just about OK. This seat is towards the right so the view is not obscured by the conductor. The seats are quite narrow.
Your eye line in row B is just about level with the stage, and the seats tilt back slightly so you are looking up at the stage. Initially I found the seat uncomfortable in the lower back area, but that did wear off as the performance went on.
The big plus about this row for me is that you’re very close to the stage, and see details (like the Phantom actually crying in one of the final scenes of Phantom of the Opera) that aren’t visible from further back.
Occasionally the singing wasn’t audible over the orchestra, but not often; if the acoustics are important to you a seat further back may be preferable."
"B6: Having read very mixed reviews of the front row seats at Her Majesty's Theatre I was a bit nervous about going to see The Phantom of the Opera for the 5th time and this time in row B seat 6. But I had no need to worry at all! I'm 5ft 4 and I had no problem with the leg room and the stage wasn't very high so you could see everything even at the back of the stage. The only "problem" is that you're so close that you have to decide where to look when a lot is happening at once as you can't see everything at the same time. For a first time goer I would recommend a seat further back but for someone who has seen the show at least once before it is absolutely perfect! I just love being close to the action and to be able to see the actors faces and costumes properly!"
B6 to 9 (front row): Whilst my 12 year old daughter was comfortable, my elder daughter and my wife who is 4' 11(and a half)" was cramped, so my 5' 8" was very badly catered for!
The show was magical, all the effects were as good as I remembered all those years ago, but from row "B" front stalls you were too low to see the back of the stage and thus you miss some of the effects!
I would strongly suggest that you avoid row "B" totally as if you sit there and are over 4' 6" you wont be comfortable and if you are comfortable you will miss parts of a superb show!"
"B7: Good seats, not recommended for tall people. Some stage smoke in your face but overall good seats for the price (day seats! Thursday afternoons - editor). The Chandelier crashes almost on top of your head, which is really cool. You do get some neck pain at the end of Act 1 and if you are lucky some spit in your face from the Phantom, because he is right above you."
“B10: (Ashleah Skinner). Restricted view because of the conductor - but he was not in my way at all, and B11 was affected slightly although it really wasn't a problem unless your under 4ft perhaps.
The only moan I have is that sound wasn't loud, so you missed parts of the singing, and the final lair boat scene, I missed parts of that. Apart from that it was excellent, and am glad I got an excellent view sold at a restricted price even though it wasn't affected in the slightest. Highly recommended. (Do note that a different, taller conductor could affect the view, of course and that these seats do have "something you need to think about before buying" and won't suit everybody – editor).
B12 is front row and marked as 'sightline restricted,' and is to the left of the conductor but not directly behind him. You can see his head, but I have to admit I never noticed him once the production started. As has been said, this is a fab seat if you have seen the show before as it does give you a new experience on things. It was amazing seeing the costumes and actors close up and hearing the musical nuances from the orchestra which ordinarily you probably wouldn't hear. The seats looked quite new and were very comfy. I was worried about the legroom but needn't have been. I'm 5 foot 10 and my knees were several inches away from the start of the orchestra wall so that certainly wasn't an issue. The seats do seem close together and space seemed a bit tight on elbow room, but nothing to really worry about. Your view is blocked for a few seconds during the masquerade scene so you miss the entrance of the Phantom and I had forgotten about SPOILER the actor who pops up during the show from the orchestra pit who blocks your view SPOILER ENDS - but again being so close adds to the experience. You will also miss seeing people’s feet if that is important to you during the ballet scenes. The fog during the boat scene didn't seem as bad as some other people have said, so not sure if they've toned it down. During the fog scene I could see the Phantom and Christine in the boat (squinting, admittedly, but you could see them). Also if you’ve seen the show previously you know when to look up, and I saw the Phantom when he was in the gods - and also saw him when he was in the angel structure (I never noticed before that the sculpture's eyes and mouth are lit up when the Phantom is on it - which I never would have known if I hadn't sat there). Was interesting watching other people not knowing where the Phantom was speaking from - but if you knew where to look you had no issues seeing him. Would definitely sit here again but would be more wary of B11 as that seat seemed more behind the conductor than I was - definitely worth the green rating on the seating plan."
“B12: (Martin) "I can say that these are the best seats in the auditorium. You see the actors very closely, the acoustics are great because you don't hear the speaker sound, only the orchestra. To cover the enjoyment, Mickey Reed is quite short, so he is no problem in your viewing and he fits into the show very much. The only part I got unsatisfied, was during the scene where Phantom and Christine go together on a boat, the first four rows get covered into the dry ice. You see nothing and the temperature gets down ten degrees for about a minute. Nevertheless, very good seats, even £5 down (what a bargain). I'd put seats 11,12,13 as 'green'."
“B 13 and 14: (Anne). The seats were amazing and I was so close to the action, I did not have a problem with legroom or cricked necks. I could see every feature of the phantom's deformity, saw all the fine detail, and felt that the singers were singing just for me, they tended to stand just in front of these seats to sing the big pieces. The flares were startling and I could feel the heat from them, the chandelier was scary, I would recommend these seats anytime."
“B13 and 14: Front row centre - found these seats to be very good, experiencing no problems at all."
"B16 and 17: This is the front row of the stalls and it is almost like you are sat in the orchestra pit! I cannot help but feel like sitting in the front row you miss out on much of impact of the staging. Also at 5ft 9 the seat was very cramped. I would recommend sitting at least row E in order to have the best view of the stage."
“B17 and 18: (Denise). When we were sitting in row B seats 17 and 18, they were for me by far the best seats in the house. We have been to the show previously and had royal circle seats H6 and 7, which had restricted viewing especially when it can to scenes where you needed to be looking at the top of the stage, for example the chandelier scene and the angel phantom scene. The seats in row B where amazing as we also felt that the show was very angular and you need to be looking to the right a lot of the show - for example the masquerade scene. At a size 20 I consider myself to be a larger lady at 5ft 4, my partner also being larger and 6ft but had no problem with the comfort of the seats, I might also mention that when the show started I was so engrossed with it that I never noticed comfort really... I did however notice every now and then that my mouth was open, so in short I was very happy with the seats in row B."
Row C: (Monique). "Be sure you book good tickets to enhance the experience. My favourite are in the middle of row C stalls, front row of dress circle and even front row of upper circle is fine, a bit more distant but offers good value for the money. However stay clear of cheap side seats! I've once bought a single seat at the very end of row B and the view was terrible. Couldn't see half of stage from there."
"C6: It seemed more overblown than ever. And I would certainly not recommend sitting that close in the stalls for anybody who wants to get the full effect of the production. In fact, I would guess that one needs to be at least in about row F or G of the stalls (i.e. further back than the chandelier) for all the effects to be seen properly, including the appearance of the phantom at the top of the proscenium arch, and indeed to have the elaborately decorated proscenium arch comfortably in one's field of vision."
"C 9 and 10: Day seats for £25 each. Really great seats for a total bargain, there were a couple of moments we couldn't see brilliantly due to dry ice and the action being directly above us but nothing to quibble about and they were fleeting. A great performance at a really amazing price."
“C11: I was right behind the conductor, but as is written elsewhere on this site, he isn't very tall and from where I was seated wasn't much of a problem. On the stage right in front of me was a wooden block which may have contained lighting. This obscured some of the action, but in the second half it wasn't there.
I was so close I could easily see the microphones of the performers. I could also see how Christine and The Phantom enter the mirror, which spoiled the effect for me. Being so close has some advantages. The Phantom's deformity can be clearly seen, and you see the performers' expressions. Christine's interaction with the Phantom when she gives him a ring and kisses him being especially moving.
The lady next to me had an exciting moment (she went oohhhh) when a male dancer was leaping around and his thong showed beneath his costume! She was also excited by the falling chandelier and ducked as it passed over, but I would prefer to be further away. I found myself having to look from side to side on occasions and had to look almost straight up to see the Phantom in the chandelier.
On my first viewing (from the Upper Circle) I remember being amazed when the rows of candles appeared for the Music of The Night scene, but from row C this effect is muted, also the cloud which is so effective from further away obscures the action I reckon rows G and H would be much better, or probably the main green area of the Dress Circle.
I didn't find the seat very comfortable. The leg room was very good, but the back of the seat wasn't very forgiving, it seemed a bit too straight."
"C11, C12, and C13: The view was excellent as it was really close to the actors. Unfortunately, the conductor was in the way for some of the time and when the dry ice with the boat scene happened, we could not see anything as the dry ice completely cut off our view - and it became very cold for a while. Otherwise they were excellent seats."
"C12: Not a bad seat, actually. More legroom than I expected (still not much, but could’ve been worse). I had to tilt my head a few times (Phantom on the proscenium arch; the chandelier crash), and the dry ice gondola ride probably looks more impressive from a few rows back, but being so close to the performers, being able to see every nuance, is just marvellous."
"D7 to D16: (Catherine). Fantastic seats, probably the best seats in the house. We were 3 rows from the front, and was very close to the stage. We were right underneath the chandelier. I would recommend row D and above. It was worth the money."
“D9 and 10: (Christian Toime. I was impressed with the leg room, I'm 6 foot and it was ample."
"D20: (thespyinthestalls). Very comfortable seats - well raked and staggered stalls afford a nice clear view of the stage."
“D22 and D23: (M). Tickets bought via the annual 'Get into London Theatre' offer. Legroom was ample and the view was fantastic, I think we saw everything there was to see, so didn't feel restricted in anyway. The theatre was quite warm for a chilly night, only felt cold when side door near the seats was open."
"D11 to 13: Paid £38.75 on the Get Into London Theatre promotion. Fabulous seats for the price! Actually, fabulous seats at considerably higher prices I would say. We were dead centre and really close to the action with no obstruction to the view except very slightly from some box which pops up during the opera scenes. The conductor’s head didn't obstruct the view at all. There was a little bit of dry ice which wafted out during one scene but this cleared very quickly. Unreservedly recommended as great seats."
"E 10, 11 and 12: (Adam). Were very good. Probably the best view I have ever had at the theatre. Almost central, four rows from the front, right under the chandelier and with plenty of legroom for my 6ft 2ins frame. We paid top price for them but well worth the money."
"E11 and 12: I paid £35 per ticket through the GILT ticket offer (runs January to March each year). I'm 6ft tall and had plenty of legroom and a fantastic view. The seats feel like they are directly below the chandelier which is a definite bonus. The conductor, while visible, is never once in the way due to the rake from the stage. Overall, excellent seats."
"E 18 and 19: Perfect view of the stage, maybe a tiny bit too close, but you can see the faces very clearly - which makes the experience a lot better in my opinion. Legroom was okay, no trouble with the stage smoke or anything despite sitting rather close to the stage."
"Row F: (Ciara Hemming). Fabulous, made even better by the fact that the rows in front of us were filled by school children which helped provide a flawless view of the action."
"F 1 and 2: From both seats F1 and F2 you couldn't see the extreme side of the stage but I don't think you missed much action at all. There is no seat in front of F1 to obscure the view and I (in F2) was lucky in that the seat in front of me (E1) was empty. Even if there was someone sitting in E1, I think the rake would have been sufficient to see over their head. One thing we both noticed was that both seats were set quite high off the ground. Despite this we actually found them pretty comfortable. Legroom was, of course, excellent in F1 and I thought very good in F2 bearing in mind my average height of 5'8''. You are close enough to the stage (there is no row A) to see most of the action and by sitting right at the side of the auditorium you didn't have to move your head from side to side too much to follow the action. From our seats you could just about see the floor of the stage including the smoke effects over the lake."
"F16 and F17: (Wendy). Amazing seats which made the premium price worth it. We were pretty much underneath the chandelier so got to experience it firstly heading towards us from the stage then the thrill of it falling towards us from the ceiling. When the Phantom was on top looking down he seemed to be looking directly at us. Close enough to see the actors’ expressions and costume details but not to see any secrets behind the special effects. The stage was at eye level so smoke floor appeared as a thin layer (whereas from upper levels you could see the entire floor of smoke covering the distance). From here the music and sound was also excellent.
I would like to add that having now sat in both the Dress Circle and the Stalls, it somehow felt like the singing sounded clearer (could hear nuances and soft breathy bits) in the Stalls F16/17, whereas the orchestra sounded better (could feel vibrations and hear clearer contrast between strings and percussion) in the Dress Circle A15/16."
"F19 and 20: (Kirsty). These seats are very good. You are close to the stage without being too close, you can see the actors faces clearly; and the famous chandelier is just to the right of you a little bit when it goes up and down so it's not very scary being under it. The only thing I could think of that annoyed me about sitting in these seats is that Christine had her back to us in some of the scenes, so we couldn't see her reactions to the other characters."
"F23 and F24: (Debbi). The seats were phantastic (!) There was plenty of legroom and the view was very good. I don't think we missed a thing. It was great being so up close and personal to the actors and catching their eye on several occasions ;)
I don't think there is anything negative I can say about these seats, except that they are in the middle of the row and so you have to constantly stand up to let people pass. The most annoying part of this was that some people were late and so we all had to stand up to let them in to their seats during the show, so we missed a part of it, as did the people behind us!"
"Row G: Worth the price."
"G1 and 2: I sat in G2 and realised that the seat looked new and had obviously been refurbished. I am 5 foot 1 inch and was wearing 3 inch heels. I sat down and realized that my feet were dangling in mid air as I couldn't reach the floor. I felt like a little kid even though I am 56 years old!! Not only was this happening but I was leaning to the right (luckily it was towards my friend in seat G1) which made my right leg dangle lower than my left one!! To top all of this I had to look left towards the stage and needless to say I ended up with shoulder/neck ache!! I don't usually complain but having paid £85 or thereabouts for the seat I felt a little upset. Don't get me wrong there was nothing BUT good I could say about the performance, however I just wanted to point out the problem that I encountered with Stalls G2 and that it may be useful for you to know."
"G15 (aisle) and G16: (JackieMc ). Legroom was adequate for two 5' 10" people, one with a larger than average bottom (!) and long legs although some shifting was required occasionally. Terrific view of the stage and actors, it was great to be close enough to see the expressions on their faces. I would most definitely book these seats again."
" G15 to 18: (GREEN on the Monkey's plan). I am 5' 11" tall and my knees where jammed against the seat in front. The young man sitting behind me (who was taller than me) spent the whole performance with his knees banging against the back of my seat! I could not say anything as we were all so cramped together - it looks like they have added an extra row of seats and pushed the other seats really close together. Great view of the stage and all the action but no enough leg room!"
"G22: This seat provided a great view of the stage action. I found the leg room really good for my 6ft frame, the seat padding seemed quite thin though but it was comfortable. For the (access rate) of £29.75 I thought it was great value."
"G27 and 28: (Brent). Paid £55 each (full price £67) from TKTS. We were very pleased with the seats, helped rather by there being no-one in seats F27 and F28 in front of us. We felt very close to the stage giving a great view of the actors' faces. Sound was excellent. Only the extreme left of the stage was out of view and I don't think we missed anything there. Occasionally actors at the front of the stage can block some views but we didn't feel this was a problem. The view of the top of the stage and the chandelier was unobstructed. My wife has seen "Phantom" from a position further across the stalls and thought these current ones were better.
The seats themselves were a bit uncomfortable - legroom was fine, particularly for me with no seat in front of me, but you feel that you are sort of sitting at an angle backwards with your feet off the floor.
We tried a few other seats behind us during the interval, in the spirit of theatremonkey! I thought the rake flattened out further back and wouldn't have been so happy with those."
“H7 and 8: Although the seats are slightly on the side, they both offer clear unobstructed views of the stage. In addition, row H begins to curve a little bit towards the end so I found myself looking between the shoulders of the people in front of me which helped, as the rake of the seating is not that steep. In these seats you will also be able to clearly see facial expressions, especially when the cast come to the front of the stage and to also feel fully involved in the show. More importantly, these seats will also allow you to see clearly downstage right which in this production, is essential, especially in the last few minutes of the show.
This was the fourth time I have seen the show and although this was the best overall view I have ever had, I certainly feel that some scenes are best viewed in some of the upper levels. For example, the roof top / chandelier scenes are best viewed from the front of the dress circle or upper circle. For us and for those sitting further forward and in the middle of the stalls, the dramatic impact of these scenes I feel, is slightly lost. I think some people sitting around me were not even aware of what was going on at the very top of the theatre."
“H19 and 20 (Adam). The view was superb, and RIGHT under the chandelier, however the worst legroom I've ever experienced! I would never ever sit in the stalls in this theatre again! The backs of the seats are FLAT, not curved, so you can’t put your knees anywhere, I was so cramped that my feet were tip-toed and I couldn't get comfy at all, and the guy in front kept telling me to stop knee-ing his chair (as though I had a choice!!). So it really spoiled my experience. At the interval we got moved to row N 27 and 28 which were further back and right at the side, but I had a seat with no seat in front of it, so that was better at least. Ah well."
H19 and 20 (Konrad). With a degree of trepidation given Adam's seat review and that I'm 6' tall and 15 stone. I thought I'd be cramped - but I'd sacrifice that for our experience- and it shouldn't affect my much more reasonably sized wife. But no; I wouldn't say spacious, but my knees - when seated naturally - didn't hit the seat back in front, and there was a little room to move around. It was fine, so, unless particularly tall, I wouldn't be put off by Adam's comments about the spaciousness of the seating. Regarding the view from the seat, I'm not a Lloyd Webber fan but found it a great experience largely due to good performances and staging, - particularly from the seat's location. I did find parts a little too loud though - more volume does not mean more emotion and means some of the music sounds less dynamic than it should. Maybe would have been better volume-wise further back."
"H27: (Martin). I had a terrible seat. Yet, top price DUH! Seeing only 3/4 of the stage and listening to the music coming from the left side did not add up to my enjoyment."
"J3 and 4: (Sherrie). Had a really good view of the stage. The overhang starts at row "J" so we were able to see the chandelier but any further back and some bits of the show would have been missed. The seats are a bit old and so aren't as comfortable as some other theatres that have been updated, but we had enough leg room."
"J9 and 10: (James – regular reader). Excellent seats - not so close that you need to keep moving your head from side to side to see the whole stage but close enough to see facial expressions clearly. The sound is good from here too and the view great. The only downside is legroom - I'm not that tall and even I found it a bit cramped. Having sat in the Dress Circle three times and in the Stalls once, the Stalls are definitely a much better place to see the show from."
"J11 and 12: (James – regular reader). A little cramped, even for two short people, but the view and sound is excellent from here."
“J13 and 14: The view from here was brilliant, and absolutely fantastic for the chandelier moments, as well as enabling you to see the Phantom at the top of the rig (which you would miss out on if further forward or under the overhang if further back). The leg room however was ridiculous, and I couldn't have my legs directly in front of me. It would seem this row has been made smaller due to the premium seats in front of it, but having the aisle seat meant I could stretch my legs out fully was the only saving grace. Sitting anywhere else in this row, I would have had to change seats, as I physically wouldn't have been able to last the duration of the performance (34 inch legs...) Thankfully, the overwhelming performance and amazing view made me quickly forget about the leg room, but feel this should be mentioned when you buy the tickets."
"J13 and 14: Having the aisle seat meant I could stretch my legs out fully was the only saving grace. Sitting anywhere else in this row, I would have had to change seats, as I physically wouldn't have been able to last the duration of the performance (34inch legs...) Thankfully, the overwhelming performance and amazing view made me quickly forget about the leg room, but feel this should be mentioned when you buy the tickets."
"J19 and J20: These were excellent, could see the whole stage perfectly."
"Row K: Worth the price."
"K9 and 10: Provided a very good view, as did all seats in that row, but I think the seats should be down priced from Row N back, as they really are not worth full price. Seats are slightly uncomfortable, but legroom was good. Belonging to the 6 footer club, I have not yet had trouble fitting into seats at Her Majesty’s!"
"K11: Very central and great view."
"K15 to 18: Nice and central, and with the added benefit of K15 being on the centre aisle. We had a good view of the stage (albeit the smallest person in our party was immediately behind a tall person in the row in front), and saw a couple of things at the very top of the set which I’d missed when I’d previously seen the show from a seat right at the front. Leg room was OK."
K23 and 24: (Katie B). Found them very good, saw everything, my cousin is slightly taller than me so she could see the chandelier right to the top. Got the full effect of the chandelier falling too without being directly underneath it! My only gripe is actually about the theatre itself, something needs to be done about the seating, the seats are quite small. If you are a 'larger size lady' like me you get wedged into the seat and literally cannot move until the interval (an American lady in front of me had exactly the same problem) and then feel so stiff afterwards. Even for someone slim you also have to get out of the row to let people get past to their seats in the middle. My cousin is only 5'5" and she said there was not much leg room either. But that is only a little moan, we were so caught up in the show it didn't detract from it, we just had a good stretch in the interval and settled down again for the second half.”
“L5: (Cristopher H). Totally great.”
"L5 and 6: Very good distance from the stage and central enough. The overhang is not really an issue, you can't see the chandelier when it is fully raised but you don't lose anything from when it rises or falls. You can't see the few seconds that the Phantom is right on top stage (practically in the roof) but you may not notice it in time if you could see it. As noted the leg room is appalling for anyone over 6ft. I am 6ft 4, so regularly struggle but this has to be among the worst I have ever experienced at any venue. The flat shape of the seats and the annoying binoculars on the seat backs make it even worse. Try and get the few seats that have extra legroom is you are tall, but that it not very easy for such a popular show."
"L15,16 and 17 Much better than the Balcony I've had at another time, and worth the price. I would pick Stalls if they were available."
"M6 and M5: Booked solely based on your seating recommendation, and they offered a perfect view of the stage plus ample leg room for the average sized person. I'm 5ft 9". The acoustics were very good also".
M17 and M18: (Mark Lane). £35 from TKTS. I have seen this show many times now, including the original cast of Crawford and Brightman, and I have always sat in the Stalls or Dress. My personal choice would always be to go for the Dress but being offered £65 seats for £35 made the decision to go for stalls. Now for someone like me who has seen the show before row M is fine if going for the first time it's about 4 rows too far back for the view of the chandelier rising and falling. The view from M is spot on otherwise the right distance and very central from 17/18. No problems with heads in front and I'm only 5 ft 6. strangely though I do find the seats uncomfortable, the seat pad itself seems large and very square so for my smaller legs my feet barely touched the floor, the seats also seem to lean backwards."
"M18 and 19: Worth the price."
"M 17 to 19: (Nadia Ansari). We were very pleased as the visibility is great. Pretty central and close to the stage so you can really experience the show. There isn't much space as the theatre is small so it does feel a bit cramped but not too bad."
“M 20,21,22: (Jamie Coniam). Checked out this guide and thought fair value was acceptable. I must say the seats were fantastic, I totally disagree with other reviewers who have said to avoid the stalls, by far the best seats we've had seeing this show. I was worried that the stage would be high and we'd get a crook neck from looking up, but the stage is low and the view was amazing, we couldn't see the chandelier going up once it had passed the Grand Circle, due to the overhang, but that's a small price to pay for such a clear and close view of the cast".
"M 28 and 27: (Beth). The seats are excruciatingly uncomfortable. Tiny (child sized it appeared), and old - they leave you aching by the end of the performance. This theatre is in need of a massive refurb. These are probably the most uncomfortable stalls we have ever been in but the view is excellent and the small theatre itself (looking from the stalls) is lovely, very sweet and intimate but desperately need new updated seats!!"
“N14: The sound was much better from row N. I picked up almost every word, the view was much better, especially the effects and scenery. Also being further back meant I didn't have to look from side to side when the action was spread out, and I didn't have to look almost straight upwards trying to glimpse the Phantom in the chandelier. I felt the seat was more comfortable as well, maybe as a result of me not having to crane my neck from side to side and upwards."
"N14: (Judy Harrison). Bought for £40 through the London Theatres January sale. Placed at the end of the aisle in the centre I could see everything and even the slight overhang above did not obscure too much of THE chandelier."
"N17 and 18: Being only £10 more than where we sat in the Grand Circle Row J before, these seats are much much better. They are more central and much closer to the action. The sound is perfect, the view is perfect and this time there was lots of legroom. You don't miss a thing at these seats, and they made the show much more enjoyable."
"O4, O29, P3, P30: I feel that P3 and P30 are better than O4 and O29 because I find the respective pillars are less obtrusive."
"O4: I didn't want to pay too much for something I wasn't sure I would enjoy. Although sold as restricted view because of a pillar, it is to the left and isn't really an issue . The only action missed, which amounted to perhaps just 1 minute in total, was missed because I was sitting in the rear stalls, under the overhang of the circle. 3.5 stars for the seat."
"O30: I got 030 in Stalls for £25 day seat - way under Balcony missing a few of the stuff like Phantom on a set-piece high and the chandelier going up. 1st in day seat line got O3 which wasn't better."
“Row P: (Tracy, Simon and Chris). We were in row P which was just under the Dress Circle but in the middle, the only bit we missed was the chandelier going higher up than we could see; but we saw the Phantom on the top of the building."
"P4 and 5: (Christina). I was in P5. Tickets were £10 pounds each, knew beforehand it would be restricted view. There was a huge pillar in front of me right in the middle of my eye view, but £10 was well worth it."
"Q11 and 12: Seats were surprisingly good - was worried about them being so far back but for the (day seat) price couldn't complain. Although overhang cut off certain bits, it was nothing that effected the show. I actually felt quite close to the action as the rake was good and could see all the actors face clearly. Would sit there again if need be."
"R12: (Hoodlum) Was directly behind the dreaded pillar - this must be the worst seat in the house at £22.50. The pillar was dead centre stage and exactly where the main characters chose to stand for most of the performance. I had to constantly crane my neck. The good news is that in the interval I managed to move to Q11. I couldn't say that it was a better view -there was no pillar but for some reason the heads of the persons in front were in the way!
I am a big Phantom fan and I've seen the show 6 times so I didn't mind having a restricted view but for anyone else out there wanting to chance it, I wouldn't sit in that seat if it was my first time seeing the show.
It remains to say that R12 (and that's coming from someone who has tried restricted in Chicago and Lion King) wins the prize for the most restricted view. At times I thought of just standing at the back! That would have been preferable. I should also add that at the box office when I bought the ticket the 'kind' lady said "all you have to do is to look to the side" sadly that doesn't solve the problems of the pillar being dead centre stage."
"R12: Right so I remember reading on Theatremonkey that some of the restricted view seats are alright. Went into the box office and she said R12 was the best. I then got very worried when I went on my mobile internet and saw someone say the pillar was directly in front. This is really not the case!!! The Theatremonkey plan incorrectly shows the placement of this seat. It is not directly behind the pillar, unlike Q14 (which is), but is in line with S12. (Editor's note: Theatremonkey seating diagrams do not reflect the exact position of seating as rows curve.)
You therefore can see 90% of the stage by leaning slightly to your right. Or, put another way, the pillar isn't in fact centre stage as the previous report said. It is on the far left hand side. Sitting back in your seat you still see around 80% of the stage. I would definitely not mark this seat as red. For a restricted view seat it is really very good. I didn't miss ANY of the action! If you want to see phantom on the cheap then seriously, GO FOR IT!"
Called the Royal Circle in this theatre
The Upper Circle overhangs the Dress Circle at row C. The view of the top of the stage is diminished from row E back, but not sufficiently to affect enjoyment.
The circle is split into central and two side blocks by aisles.
The rake of the circle is fairly shallow, except for row H, which is higher than the others.
Slightly cramped in all seats, worst in row A, a little better in row H, and seats B11 and 25, the monkey felt.
Try row C 12 to 25 then D 13 to 27 in that order. B 12 to 24 is also prime, if lucky enough to be at a performance where "people leaning forward" isn't an issue.
Follow this with A 13 to 24 at top price or E13 to 21, depending how much an extra eighth of an inch of legroom matters to you.
Of the cheaper seats, pick row F 15 to 22, then F 10 to 12 and 24 to 26. Choose G 16 to 20 then H 16 to 19 next. The rest of the seats are below average value and consider them only if stalls are unavailable.
Slim pillars appear in row E. Only a few seats in rows F to H are badly affected enough to be designated restricted view. Theatremonkey nominates row H seat 23 as best in the house. With a little sideways movement 99% of the stage is visible from here. Also try H29, H5 and F31. The other seats truly are poor, try stalls restricted view seats instead; or be prepared to see what you can and just enjoy the music if you take anything else in the Dress Circle.
At top price choose B and C 7 to 11 and B 25 to 29 and C 26 to 29. Then D 9 to 12 and 28 to 31, and E 7 to 9. Take stalls before choosing these seats though.
Ignore the ends of rows, as the discounts do not justify the strange viewing angle. Good value may be had from row E 25 to 27, F 7 to 9 and 27 to 28, G 7, 8, 27, 28, and row H 7 and 27.
Shallow rake makes seeing over those in front difficult for the shortest in rows B to G. Folk leaning forward add to problems in this circle.
Pillars in row E affect views from seats behind.
Row H has a step up to it at the ends - and it is quite a steep step, for those who find such things harder than average.
The view of the top / sides of the stage are important for 'The Phantom Of The Opera'. In fairness to the producers they have priced any seat without a full view of the stage as less than top price.
Seats A 9 to 28 and B 12 to 24 (plus C 12 to 25 Friday and Saturday) are sold at premium prices. A is even more expensive Friday and Saturday. The view is excellent here, whether you wish to spend the extra is totally your choice, feels the monkey...
Row H seats that are not behind pillars drop to third price. Monkey likes H 8 to 26. Yes, the stage top isn't fully in view, but these are dress circle seats for the price of upper circle ones, and have a pretty good height raise above the row in front.
"Dress Circle: (The Johnson Family). We sat in the Royal Circle and found the seating cramped and the view inferior to a good Stalls seat."
“Row A: The view could simply not have been better."
Row A and B: (Monique). "Be sure you book good tickets to enhance the experience. My favourite are in the middle of row C stalls, front row of dress circle and even front row of upper circle is fine, a bit more distant but offers good value for the money. However stay clear of cheap side seats! I've once bought a single seat at the very end of row B and the view was terrible. Couldn't see half of stage from there."
"Rows A and B (Lizzie). (Ccouldn’t get 6 tickets together) and although one or two parts of the performance are out of view when they go to the far side of the stage generally good seats"
"A15 and 16: (Wendy). Couldn’t have asked for a better first experience of The Phantom of the Opera. From here I could literally feel the vibrations of the music, especially the first dramatic bits when the chandelier rose up. It was directly in front of the Phantom when he appeared in the suspended decorations and a great position as the chandelier swooped past. Having now also sat in the Stalls, the depth of the stage is more visible from the upper levels, for example from the Dress Circle I could see the entire blanket of smoke covering the stage floor, whereas from the Stalls (F16, F17) the floor of the stage is at eye level so from that angle the blanket of smoke appeared as a thin layer overflowing the stage.
I thought these seats were a real treat, especially with with no seats in front so no heads to obscure the view. My boyfriend did say his knees hurt from no leg room, although this was not a problem for me as I’m shorter. From my angle I couldn’t see the orchestra pit so I actually didn’t even know there was a live orchestra playing until after the curtain came down and there was a bunch of people clustered around the railing at Stalls level and I went over to have a look - this discovery then added to my awe of the show.
I would like to add that having now sat in both the Dress Circle and the Stalls, it somehow felt like the singing sounded clearer (could hear nuances and soft breathy bits) in the Stalls F16/17, whereas the orchestra sounded better (could feel vibrations and hear clearer contrast between strings and percussion) in the Dress Circle A15/16."
"A23 and A24: Good seats - - not much legroom"
"A22 and 23: Excellent seats. I never have a problem with legroom in the dress circle; I find the D/C my preferred place to sit in the theatre to the stalls. However, I did find this seat a little bit tight myself, however not tight enough to decrease my enjoyment of the show."
"A25 and 26: Perfect seats for us – we only had to sit upright (as opposed to lolling right back, which I can’t say I ever do and nor does Tall Daughter who is always far too excited for lounging about) to see everything clearly. After reading everyone’s reviews here, I was conscious of the need to sit back, but felt no need to lean forward. No railing, just a wide velvet shelf. You lost the very front left corner if you sat right back, that was all. Leg room was very good, even for long legs. We really felt the circle was best for a good view of the various elements of this show."
"A27: I fell in love with this production upon first seeing it in April 2003. I did not find the legroom too restricting ( I am 5'11"), and the view was spectacular, so close to all the action and with a clear sight of everything, without having to lean forward at all.
When I recently returned to see this production again however, I sat just one row back and a couple of seats over from where I had watched from the first time. I sat in B 32, (also top price seats), and the difference in view from this slight shift in position was dramatic.
There are many important parts of the Phantom of the Opera that occur at the front and to the left (from the observers point of view) of the stage. These include the opening, with the Vicomte du Chagny sat in that position, many important conversations between characters frequently occur in this position, the Phantom shows Christine the image in the mirror in this location, stairs to 'down below' open up here, and the phantom disappears into his chair at the end here.
From these seats, I could hardly see any of that, and this grossly impeded my enjoyment of the performance. To make matters worse, the people in row A in kept leaning over to see, and infringing more upon the limited view we had. It was only after the interval that this stopped, as we specifically pointed it out to an usher, who I must say was very professional.
The similar seats at the opposite side of the auditorium are not full price, yet I feel from the side I refer too, the view must be affected more. These seats should not be full price, perhaps not even second price. Do not sit here if you can avoid it!"
“A27 and 28: (Rebecca, 4ft 11). I saw Phantom of the Opera at a sold out Thursday evening showing in July 2010 from. Immediately when we sat down we realised that these should be sold as restricted view, and not the very expensive full price. If I sat back in my seat I could not see the stage at all due to the thick velvet wall at the front of the circle. Most people on the front row around me were leaning forward to see the stage. Fortunately at certain times in the show the action is elevated on a variety of platforms, which gave us the opportunity to sit back for a while. Patrons taking row B should be aware that their view might be obstructed by people on row A leaning forward, necessarily, to see the stage. Some views of the set were excellent from the royal circle, but I would recommend the stalls in future, or further back in the royal circle. A friend who is 5ft 7 struggled a little, but not as much as me.”
“B 16 to 19: “The Phantom of the Opera,” (Chris B). This certainly feels like one of the most lavish theatres in the West End, which perfectly befits one of the most successful musicals ever performed. These seats are centrally located in the dress circle and are very comfortable with plenty of legroom. They offer a great, clear view of the whole stage and are set so you can see between the heads in front so the view shouldn’t be obscured. The circle feels quite low and I think being raised above the stalls for this show is really worth it as you get a much better appreciation of the stage, from top to bottom.”
“B21: (Jon). This should have been fine as I'm 5'11" but two people in front of me actually blocked a lot of the view (they also rustled bags to show each other their shopping for large sections of the show). They were asked by the staff to stop leaning forward onto the front of the Dress Circle though, but they still obscured a lot of my view. A child near to me was given a cushion but still had problems seeing properly".
"B34 and 35: Right on the outside of the row, clearly without full view of the stage. (We used an offer but...) would have been happy to pay full price for better seats."
"C7: Has a partially obstructed view seat. You could not see all of Andre and Firmin in their theatre box and you could not see the top of the staircase in Masquerade. However, for £35 (face value £65), excellent value."
"C14: Having read the various comments on this site regarding the poor sightlines and restrictions of viewing the stage in this theatre, I thought I might be safe sitting here. Unfortunately, due to the very low rake, the 6ft high man in front of me completely blocked my view of the stage and I had to spend most of the evening with my head tilted at an angle. In addition, he was very drunk and kept on humming, waving his arms along to the music and talking to his friend throughout the show. Overall, the seat could have been really good (it was especially good when viewing the Phantom during the roof scenes) but like others in this row, it really depends on how tall (and irritating) the person in front of you is”
"C18 and 19: We sat here on the recommendation of this website - the very best seats in the entire theatre. They were dead centre; we had not a single obstruction and could see every aspect of the production perfectly. Legroom was ample, and so long as nobody in front of you leans forward, you needn't move for the entire duration of the show. The tickets were £40 each, reduced from £55 each as part of a Christmas offer; I would have happily paid full price given the quality of the seats and of the show."
"C24 and 25: (Emma). Brilliant view, although little leg room - but that is because the theatre is old, so has to be expected."
"D7 and D8: (James, Finchley). I was lucky enough to get a £25 offer - there is no way I would pay full price for these seats. I found the viewing angle quite peculiar and I missed quite a bit on the right of the stage. People kept leaning forward which obscured the view from time to time and the overhang cut off a few bits at the top which would have been nice to see, although not essential. Also, the Masquerade scene which is usually quite a spectacle is not best viewed from here either."
"E1: My view was very good. I couldn't see the chandelier rise all the way up to the ceiling due to the next level overhanging, but of the stage it was very good. I just about saw Raoul and the managers in their box during 'Think Of Me.”
“E13 and E14: (William Cooper, Phantom fan and theatre observer). With regards to the Dress Circle, I recently fed my addiction with another Phantom fix from dress circle seats, the view was not particularly special as it was a last minute (relatively- THIS IS Phantom) booking.
That said however, I have paid top price for far worse seats in the past and there wasn't really a problem with people leaning forward in their seats - it certainly wasn't enough to diminish the performance.
I was however outraged by the over-excited Welsh ladies next to me who insisted on commenting 'He comes from Swansea' every time the Phantom appeared and rustling their sweet packets all through 'Music of the Night' If I didn't know the words by heart it would have been unacceptably distracting."
"G14: I've seen the Phantom only once and from a terrible place in the Dress Circle row G seat 14. Being 1m 84cm tall I had to bend to see the chandelier and the phantom when he was inside it. Besides it feels very far. I don't suggest seeing it from this row. An exciting piece of theatre though."
“G14: I was in Dress circle row G seat 14, the same seat where another correspondent who is 1.84m tall said he had to lean forward to see the Phantom in the chandelier. Well, I'm 1.73 and could just about see him without leaning forward, that is until the chandelier moved higher.
He also said it seemed far away. I have seen Phantom twice from the Upper Circle, and where I was on Friday seemed nearer, although I must admit it would have been better if I could have got a centre seat in the Upper Circle, but the best I could get from the web site was row C seat 5 which I thought too far from centre. Maybe I should have rung them but I booked out of hours. I think I heard the words clearer this time although there were the usual people who can't sit still, paper rustlers and talkers!"
"G23: Wouldn't advise it - there's a pillar right in the way of the view."
"H6 and 7: (Denise). Had restricted viewing especially when it can to scenes where you needed to be looking at the top of the stage, for example the chandelier scene and the angel phantom scene."
"H17 and 18: (Ed). Our Valentine’s celebration was ruined by a) the restricted view we had from our seats on the back row of the Royal Circle - H17 and H18 and b) the intolerable heat. The overhang of the upper circle blocks the view of the upper part of the stage from row H. The restricted view prevented us from seeing significant action. Particularly the graveside scene at the start of Act 2, not to mention the spectacle of the chandelier and the phantom observing the scene on the rooftop. I deliberately didn't buy the cheapest tickets available as I wanted a good quality viewing experience, but I fail to see how we had anything other than the worst seats in the house. As we bent double to look at the action it was obvious that even one row forward in G the view was much, much better. I think it is criminal for the seats in the back row of the Royal Circle to be advertised and sold in the same price plan as seats with a far better viewing angle either elsewhere in the RC or in the stalls.
Not only this but the heat in our seats was intolerable. The size and space of the seats is uncomfortable enough to start with, but the added discomfort of the heat made for a very unpleasant and painful experience. This utterly detracted from the action unfolding in front of us as we were unable to focus or immerse ourselves in the performance due to the distraction of our pain. (The monkey notes that this reader wasn't aware of the "view in proportion to ticket price" policy in operation until it told him - at which point he mentioned he would have bought more expensive seats so as to see the whole show... worth underlining the problems in this venue again, feels the monkey).
Exist either side of the stage, but are incorporated into the action, so form part of the staging rather than audience seating.
Occasionally someone may be seated here... and they may vanish...
Good, as movable chairs.
Not available to buy. If they were, not bad at all, feels the monkey.
Not usually used.
Called the Grand Circle in this theatre
The balcony is above and behind the Upper circle and thus does not affect the view from any seat.
The Upper Circle is split into centre and two side blocks by aisles.
Poor in most seats, worst in row A, best in the few centre aisle seats from row B to J in the side blocks – these have nothing in front.
Rows B to E offer good value for money as they have a clear view of the stage and seem close to the action. Choose these above stalls seats unless legroom is a factor. The rows behind also offer fair value for money.
The closest two seats to the centre aisles - rows B and C 10, 11, 27 and 28, and rows D and E 8, 9, 25 and 26 offer good value. Next try rows F to K 7, 8, 24 and 25.
The rest, almost all designated restricted view, suffer a strange viewing angle with the set in the way and are only recommended if the best restricted view seats in other parts of the theatre are sold out or too expensive.
A metal bar runs across the front of the circle, slightly intruding on the view in row A.
Folk leaning forward in row A are a constant moan from those seated in rows B and C.
No seat has a full view of the stage – particularly those on the extreme ends of rows.
The view of the top / sides of the stage are important for 'The Phantom Of The Opera'. In fairness to the producers they have priced any seat without a full view of the stage as less than top price. The amount you see is directly in proportion to what you pay up here.
The whole centre block is second price. Skip G back, feels the monkey. Take instead the first two seats next to the aisles in rows B to E at a lower price than seats just over the aisle.
“Upper Circle: (William Cooper) People leaning forward is a definite problem in the Upper Circle, but these seats (especially in the centre block) beat the proverbial out of the Balcony."
"Upper Circle: (Andy B) I sat in the Upper Circle. Terrible sightlines and no legroom. I was so far away from the stage that I felt like I couldn't be further away from the action. Not that there was much action coming from the unengaging acting and plot."
"Front Row: (Jamie Coniam). We didn't find the bar an obstruction at all. although we are both over 6ft tall, which no doubt helped."
Row A: (Monique). "Be sure you book good tickets to enhance the experience. Even front row of upper circle is fine, a bit more distant but offers good value for the money."
"A18 and 19: (Edward Bernstone). They were very good seats as the bar was only slightly blocking our view. I was rather annoyed when a man came to the front of the Circle and told everyone to lean back. I just ignored him, because if I had leant back half the cast would have been beheaded by the bar."
"A21: (Chris Rouse). The balcony ledge only comes up to just under waist height, and there is a narrow bar which comes up slightly higher. I could see all the stage perfectly clearly without leaning forward at all (and I'm only average height - 5ft 8"). The bar only obstructed the view of the orchestra pit which was hardly a problem. In fact, I think it's far preferable to have a ledge/bar below the view of the stage, than be behind a row of people who could be more of an obstruction. ( Those shorter than Chris may still have a problem, though, feels the monkey).
"B16 and 17: The head of the man in front of me obscured my view slightly and my partner (who is 6'4") found that the legroom was not sufficient for him and he was a bit uncomfortable and had to keep shifting in his seat. It is a central position so good from that point of view and I would say it is probably one of the best places to get a good view of the chandelier going up and going down!"
“B27 and 28: We paid £40 + booking fee for Seats in the Grand Circle, and whilst I'd never usually choose seats this high-up, I'd read on good authority (i.e. here) that the Grand Circle isn't particularly high. Coupled with a very limited choice of seats, I went for these. We were generally happy with the seats - but they should be clearly identified as "Restricted," as my aisle seat (and much more so the seat next to me), often had a blocked view of the performance, especially when the action was Stage Right. It's typical that much of the show seemed to take place here - with very little on the alternative side of the stage - so, with that in mind I highly recommend sitting to the right hand side of the theatre if choosing. As per usual, Row B suffers from your view being spoilt if people in front lean over; I found myself envying the people sat in the central section in Row A as they paid the same price as me but are great seats. They've got it right in so much as the seats get less expensive as you move toward the wall, but the seats on the aisle and adjacent to that should also be reduced. Plenty of leg room for the aisle seats, as lots of room in front, but was also adequate when moving in."
“B29 and 30: It was a fairly restricted view - and was bought as a NON-Restricted for £20 (increased in price since, editor).. OK, I shouldn't complain.. but..! You can't see the left side of the stage without leaning over, and a very *kind* employee comes up at the beginning and informs us "please do not lean over during the performance as it distracts the view from people behind".. however, it's impossible to see a thing without leaning over. The final scene with the Phantom disappearing was useless, so everyone ignored it and just all leant over! Just thought this would help, so it was B29/30 then all the way out to the end. (The monkey felt that since these seats are 33% cheaper than those in the centre, to account for the loss of view, they were average value, you got what you paid for. The same goes for the rest of the seats in that row (all restricted view and priced accordingly). As a collection of all experiences, though, the monkey is proud to always put a reader's view, and hopes it will help everyone else to decide for themselves, based on more information than the box office staff can generally provide).”
"B36: priced at £21 (in 2011) due to its very restricted view. You can see the full body of the actors and set from the centre over to stage left wings. From centre to stage right wings, you slowly are able to see less and less... You will be able to see the top halves of the actors when they dwell in the stage right area unless they are very far upstage right or very downstage right.
However, this musical is one of the few shows that uses the stage space in a constantly varied way. It is never a consistent struggle to see the actors, since they are always moving around. The other great thing is that you are not distracted by backstage activity - very professionally/smoothly done with black masking and respectfulness to audience members. In this seat, you are sitting next to a spotlight operator, but the gentleman I sat beside was very respectful.
Additionally, I am a 6ft tall fellow, and felt very comfortable, since I was on the aisle. I'd recommend this seat, even for a first timer, as long as they are not a grump, and are a theatre fan who doesn't mind a really close view with a bit of a restriction."
"C9: For the 30th anniversary show (special anniversary price of £30). The view from here was good (I normally prefer Royal Circle due to the access rate) particular when the Phantom is above the audience. The only issue was people in front rows leaning forward. Leg room was OK as you can stretch one leg out."
"C10 and 11: Got a good deal on these from the new year sale - on the aisle. For the money (£30 a ticket), we thought these were great - a really good view, not too squeezed in and didn't feel we missed anything on stage - just needed to lean forward slightly to see front right hand corner of the stage, but not too much happened there. Great to be almost at eye level when the Phantom appears at the top of the stage too. Only gripe was as others have commented, theatre etiquette seemed to be in short supply up there - a small child near us who'd been dragged by it's mother was bored and fidgety, and the mother seemed to think it was OK to check her phone during the performance!"
"C36: Not dreadful but certainly not worth £25 in any way shape or form. Key moments were missed - if I didn’t already know what happens in key places I’d be confused as to what was going on! Worst of all - missed the final part of the lair when, for all I’d have know, Phantom could have just sauntered off stage!! Don’t recommend this seat at all."
"D5 and 6: Quite a poor view, I wouldn't want to sit there again. If anyone in front of you leans forward, they completely obscure your view and you have quite an area of stage left cut off from view. However, the Grand Circle does give you good views of the Phantom up to his tricks which is quite good fun to see."
"D7 (January 2016): A pretty decent view of the stage, missing some of the front right hand side is all. You get a great view of the Phantom when he’s up at the top of the stage – I’d take the upper circle over the back of the stalls or dress circle because you’d probably miss this due to the overhang of the circle!"
"D 12,13,14,15 (Jamie Coniam). Very good seats, with a better view than the more expensive seats we had on another visit."
"D14, D15 and D16: (Sarah). Were fantastic. Great views and right in the middle of the seating so good overall view and sound. Booked these seats having reviewed them on this website beforehand and would like to add my recommendation as I was very happy."
D16 and 17: Having booked these seats relatively cheaply during Kids Week (summer promotion - editor) I was very happy to then read previous Theatre Monkey reviewers giving them the thumbs up . I would agree with the reviews, the seats are central and give a clear view of all areas of the stage. The legroom wasn’t too bad ( I am 5 feet 5) and the seats were a standard size. The acoustics in this theatre are good anyway but the sound from the stage was very clear. The only downside.........The people in the front row leaning over the balcony was a little bit annoying as they were quite tall which meant there was a ‘domino’ effect with the people in row B behind them leaning forward, then the people in row C leaning forward etc etc, but this didn’t detract too much as the majority of the action is in the middle of the stage which was clearly visible."
"D17 and 18: Right in the middle. The view was very good (except for the lady in front of me who had quite big hair) but apart from that, no complaints, plus you get a fantastic view of the Phantom up to no good in the rafters."
"E 12 and 13: The legroom in E12 and E13 is very poor indeed and I would not sit in the Upper Circle again - although the view was acceptable, it wasn't brilliant (although you do get up close and personal with the Phantom when he's up to mischief way above the stage). The couple sitting in front of me also decided to lean forward and put their heads close together so by that point I'd had enough and I asked them to sit back as otherwise I would have missed the chandelier rising up."
"E 15 to 18: The view of the stage was excellent, as was the view of the top of the theatre, we had a great sight of The Phantom during his performance in 'The Gods'. The leg room was more than adequate, I am 6ft 2 and had no trouble at all. The only gripe is I had to move from side to side to see the centre of the stage, due to a tall gentleman sitting directly in front of me, but this must have applied to those sitting behind me due to my height."
"F21: Excellent view of the stage. Took a while for my parents to acclimatise to the altitude but once the show started they were fine. Legroom is a bit tight in these seats but it didn't detract from my enjoyment. Also from the grand circle you get a great view of the chandelier rising ad when the Phantom is up above the arch. Grand circle may be better for these reasons than the rear of the stalls or dress circle where this action might be missed."
“F24 and F25: (B Groot). Seat F24 was good value and plenty of leg room as no seat in front. F25 had more restricted leg room. Both had good views except for the very bottom left corner of the stage - but as Christina's dressing room is on the right and most of the action takes place in the middle or to the right, very little is lost. Good view of the Phantom when he is high up."
"F24 and 25: (Kristina P). Our budget was limited so we got Grand circle, F24&25. The seats were quite good, offered great value for money. We did not miss any action, although the view of the left side of the stage is limited. Being close to the aisle offers relief for cramped legs…"
"G2: Bought last minute ticket from the box office. £23 in the upper circle. Informed it was restricted view. Did find myself leaning a little in the first Act. Couldn't clearly see the Phantom in the mirror, otherwise perfect. Second Act, Masqierade is considerably more obstructed and a few moments in the second Act. Excellent value seats with no restrictions other than seeing downstage left of the stage. Highly recommended. Note: seen the show approximately 80 times in the West End, £23 is PHENONENAL value compared to to £55 at the back of the stalls!"
"G16 and 17: I’m about 5’11 and found it hard to see over the heads of everyone else. Anything downstage was obscured by people. It’s possible I had a run of tall people in front of me, but it wasn’t especially easy to see a lot of things."
“H15 and 16: Good seats to view all the action."
“H17 and 18: (James F). Great seats in the upper circle. The only tiny problem with view the seats is that you can’t see the head when the Phantom enters (2 second obstruction), at the start of Act 2 and the chandelier blocks the phantom for a few seconds when he is at the top of the stage at the end of Act 1. Legroom is poor but manageable (I’m 6”1 and it was a small problem, but easy to forget about when watching the production)."
"H26 and 27: Legroom was just tolerable, but otherwise comfortable. The view of the stage is mainly good, however the corner of the stage (Down-Stage Right in the correct theatre terms) cannot be seen from these seats, and anywhere in this part of the circle, so everyone leans forward and that just makes it harder for you to see. In fact, I would say about a maximum of 10 minutes through the whole show is spent watching people lean. However, with the quality of the show the price is still value for money. Some of the key moments happen on Down-Stage Right, but fortunately the singing and lines are so clear you can visualise it for yourself."
"J7 and 8: Pleasantly surprised by the seats. Although the very front corner of the stage was obscured, we didn’t feel like we missed anything and there are certain advantages to being further up. My taller partner had the aisle seat, J8, and enjoyed having leg room - I felt sorry for the man on my other side in J6 who was evidently very uncomfortable. I’d have preferred to be a bit closer and more central, but overall not bad."
"K23: Would not recommend, and definitely not worth the £43. Girl at Box Office promised they were decent seats but I could barely see faces and the front of the stage is blocked by the circle. Sound is horrible, I could barely understand anything of the show - so I was often confused about what was going on. There were two good things about my seats. 1: I had an incredibly nice usher who offered my a booster so I could see the front of the stage better and 2. The acting was phenomenal that even in the far back you could enjoy it."
Above and behind the Upper Circle. The location makes it feel far from the stage and tucked away, but not high enough to induce vertigo.
The circle is divided into two centre and two side blocks by aisles.
Poor, especially in row A.
The theatre itself notes that the outermost seats in the side blocks are next to a wall, and that all side block seats have limited legroom and a restricted view as well...
They also note that A to C 7 and 24, plus B and C 15 and 16 have limited legroom and a restricted view.
These seats used to offer a cheap way of seeing the show for those on the tightest budget. The view isn't good, but the bargain basement price reflects this strongly. Now they are VERY overpriced and should be avoided unless seeing the show is important enough to you, but be prepared to compromise on both view and sound quality - as well as a feeling that the tickets are at least £5 too expensive.
Best seats are rows B and C 7 to 24. Then A 7 to 24 due to bars and legroom.
Side blocks A to C 2 to 6 and 25 to 29 and A 30 are adequate (row A problems also apply here); rows D to F feel isolated and far from the stage.
THESE TICKETS ARE OFTEN BOUGHT BY TOUTS / SCALPERS FOR RESALE. THEY ARE THEN PASSED OFF AS DRESS CIRCLE SEATS. DO NOT PURCHASE FOR MORE THAN FACE VALUE. THEY ARE NOT WORTH IT.
A spotlight position behind row D 2 to 6 affects nobody much.
The view of the top / sides of the stage are important for 'The Phantom Of The Opera'. In fairness to the producers they have priced any seat without a full view of the stage as less than top price.
Aisle seats in the centre block drop a price due to restricted legroom - no bargain unless short, feels the monkey.
"Balcony: (William Cooper). Another word of advice, steer clear of the balcony. Compared with similarly priced seats in other theatres the view from here is very distant and the rake appalling. On top of this, you could get better sound quality listening to the show from the bottom of a lake in a biscuit tin. I definitely recommend paying a bit extra for the Upper and Dress Circles. (This is backed up by another reader who complains about missing half the show from up there. The sound problem, though, was addressed in 2008 when a new system was installed - editor).
"Row A: (Teresa). I sat in the middle of the first row of the balcony recently (2008) and I saw everything! I can really recommend that seat. The first time I saw 'Phantom' I sat in the stalls with the roof over me and, even though the sound was great and I saw everything on the stage, I still like the balcony better because you see all the action that goes on over the stage and, the best of all - you get to see the chandelier falling :)"
"A16 and 17: Front row. Leg space is limited but OK for us. However, if you are tall, I imagine it would be uncomfortable. The view was OK, but quite far from the stage. My friend said she has missed some of the details (for example, in the 'auto-playing' keys from the piano in the Don Juan rehearsal scene). The row of stage lights blocks off the view of the Chandelier and the top 'Angel decoration'. It is a mild drawback. I would recommend you to sit in the stall or Royal Circle if you want the full Phantom experience (the excitement of seeing the Chandelier falling!) We have paid £28 for the Balcony seats, I would say for that price, we have got more than expected."
Total 1209 seats.
Air-cooled auditorium. One reader in the Upper Circle suggests a light jacket as it was rather efficient!
Induction loop and Williams Infrared. Dog sitters available. Some signed and audio interpreted performances. Three wheelchairs can park in stalls row S or users can transfer to any aisle seat. Access is through a fire door with level access to the seat. Adapted toilet near seat at fire exit. A theatre which tries. Specific information from www.lwtheatres.co.uk or 020 7087 7966.
Reader Jamie Coniam says:
"I must comment on the helpfulness of the theatre staff, as my grandmother uses a wheel chair, we were approached on entering the theatre by staff and taken round to a side door, shown the disabled toilets and taken to our seats before the crowds came in.
Our interval drinks order was taken and a selection of gifts from the kiosk was bought round to our seats of which nanny bought ............the lot!!
We all thoroughly enjoyed the show and when the crowds had dispersed the staff bought out our wheelchair and had a good old natter with nanny asking her what she thought of the performance.
Customer service at its best!"
Food: Ice Cream and confectionery available.
Three Bars, Stalls, Dress Circle and Upper Circle.
10 toilets in all. Stalls 1 gents 3 cubicles, 3 ladies 8, 2, 2 cubicles; Dress Circle 2 ladies 3, 2 cubicles; Upper Circle 1 gents 2 cubicles, 1 ladies 4 cubicles; Balcony 1 gents 2 cubicles, 1 ladies 2 cubicles.
Theatres use "dynamic pricing." Seat prices change according to demand for a particular performance. Prices below were compiled as booking originally opened. Current prices are advised at time of enquiry.
Based on paying FULL PRICE (no discount!) for tickets, site writers and contributing guests have ALSO created the colour-coded plans for "value for money," considering factors like views, comfort and value-for-money compared with other same-priced seats available.
For a full discussion, opinions, reviews, notes, tips, hints and advice on all the seats in this theatre, click on "BEST SEAT ADVICE" (on the left of your screen).
On the plans below:
Seats in GREEN many feel may offer either noticeable value, or something to compensate for a problem; for example, being a well-priced restricted view ticket. Any seats coloured LIGHT GREEN are sold at "premium" prices because the show producer thinks they are the best. The monkey says "you are only getting what you pay for" but uses this colour to highlight the ones it feels best at the price, and help everybody else find equally good seats nearby at lower prices.
Seats in WHITE, many feel, provided about what they pay for. Generally unremarkable.
Seats in RED are coloured to draw attention. Not necessarily to be avoided - maybe nothing specific is wrong with them, other than opinions that there are better seats at the same price. Other times there may be something to consider before buying – perhaps overpricing, obstructed views, less comfort etc.
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.
The Dress Circle is called the "Royal Circle" in this venue.
The Upper Circle is called the "Grand Circle" in this venue.
NOTE: Stalls Row B seats 10, 11 and 12 have the orchestra conductor in view. These seats are highly rated by fans, but MAY NOT BE SUITABLE for everyone - buying these are a personal choice. Read more before choosing by clicking the "BEST SEAT ADVICE" link on the left.
A "restoration fee" contribution is included in all prices above.
Please note: The seating plans are not accurate representations of the auditorium. While we try to ensure they are as close to the actual theatre plan as possible we cannot guarantee they are a true representation. Customers with specific requirements are advised to discuss these with the theatre prior to booking to avoid any confusion.
Piccadilly Circus - Piccadilly (Dark Blue) and Bakerloo (Brown) lines.
The escalator from the platforms ends in a large circular underground area.
After leaving the barriers, turn to your left, and follow the curve of the barriers around until you see an exit to your right with the sign "Subway 4" over it. Walk under this sign.
Keep walking through this tunnel and ignore the first staircase marked "Shaftesbury Avenue". Continue along the tunnel passing the "Trocadero" doors, and follow it as it curves past another set of doors. Follow the arrow on the sign ahead of you that says "Eros" (the tunnel continues to the right).
In this new section of tunnel, take the stairs ahead and to your right up to the street.
You will emerge near the Criterion Theatre. Walk ahead of you. If you see two roads - Piccadilly and Regent Street - with a shop between them..., wrong way.
You will come to a busy road, Haymarket. Railings prevent you crossing it. A large statue of horses is to your right. Turn to your right and walk down Haymarket.
Cross Jermyn Street, continue walking downhill. Cross St James's Market and Norris Street and pass the UGC cinema Haymarket. Cross Charles II Street, and the theatre is there on your right.
6,12,13,15,22B,38,53, 88,159 to Haymarket. Haymarket is a one way street. If you are travelling by bus from Trafalgar Square to Piccadilly Circus, leave the bus at the first stop in Lower Regent Street. Cross Lower Regent Street. Turn to your right, looking downhill towards the Crimea War Memorial column with the road either side of it. The first side street after the roads rejoin in front of the monument is Charles II Street. Walk along it. Her Majesty's Theatre is at the end on the right. If you come to a garden square instead, wrong way. Turn around, walk back to Regent Street, cross it, and walk down the other part of Charles II Street.
If travelling from Oxford Street or Shaftesbury Avenue you will be able to leave the bus on Haymarket itself. Do so at the second stop in the street.
A rank for Black taxis is at Charing Cross Station - a fair distance from the theatre. Best chance of hailing one is in the street outside.
Whitcomb Street. Leave the car park, turn left and walk uphill. The first street on your left is Panton Street. Turn down it and pass the multiscreen film complex. Keep going straight on. Pass the Harold Pinter (formerly Comedy) Theatre. At the end of the street is Haymarket, a busy road. Cross it and turn to your left. Walk downhill. Cross Charles II Street. The theatre is in front of you. If you pass the Pizza Hut, wrong way.
Spring Gardens / Trafalgar Square is also nearby, and for these car parks the "Theatreland Parking Scheme" may be available. Call Q-Park car parks on 0870 442 0104 or see www.q-park.co.uk for details. At this car park, parking under the "Theatreland Parking Scheme" allows a 50% discount in cost. Spaces CANNOT be reserved at these prices, so choose whether you would prefer to book and pay more, or use this scheme.
If you choose the "Theatreland Parking Scheme", you must get your car park ticket validated at the theatre's box office counter (the theatre attendant will insert the car parking ticket into a small machine which updates the information held on the magnetic strip on the reverse, thus enabling the discount). When you pay using the machines at the car park, 50% will be deducted from the full tariff. You may park for up to 24 hours using this scheme and it is endorsed by the Society of London Theatre.
For a full list of car parks and theatres that participate in the 50% off theatreland scheme see www.q-park.co.uk.