- New London fringe theatre to close just days after acclaimed opening production of Sweeney Todd wowed the critics
- Executive Director of Twickenham Theatre given just two days to vacate the premises after landlord sells the building
London’s newest fringe theatre is closing after staging one of the most acclaimed productions of a Stephen Sondheim musical in recent times.
Sweeney Todd played its final sold-out performance of an extended opening season just yesterday at the 100-seat Twickenham Theatre in West London.
Today, Executive Director, West End producer Tony Green has just two days to vacate the London Road premises after the pub was sold in a move he calls a “total bombshell”.
“I have been advised that the pub has been sold and that the new landlords ‘do not figure theatre as part of their plans’,” he says. “To make matters worse, the new landlords, along with the brewery and the superior landlords of the site are not going to honour the three months’ notice period I had in place.”
Mr Green is now actively seeking new premises in the area, where he has lived for 25 years. Opening a dedicated theatre space in Twickenham had long been a dream of his. “I wanted to create a dedicated performance arts space in Twickenham, and that’s exactly what I did. I am not disheartened by the recent news because the success of Sweeney Todd informs me there is indeed a market in the area for a fringe space which produces quality productions. So it means there will be a pause in delivering on the goal whilst we go out and find somewhere else.”
The theatre’s inaugural season was an intimate in-house production of Stephen Sondheim’s Victorian musical, Sweeney Todd, starring Olivier Award winner David Bedella as razor-wielding madman Sweeney Todd and Sarah Ingram his pie-making partner in crime, Mrs Lovett. It was an instant success getting 4 and 5 star raves from the critics, sold every ticket and then was extended and those extra performances sold out in just a couple of days.
Green said when he opened the venue: “Twickenham has not had any arts and entertainment venues available to production companies for over 250 years. By offering a new dedicated venue for quality theatre and other entertainment we can give locals the opportunity to experience some of the West End on their doorstep – and Londoners a reason to come to Twickenham”
Tuesday 14th October 2014