History of Ambassadors Theatre:
The Ambassador’s Theatre was a companion to the adjacent St Martin’s and opened in 1913. The opening production (Panthea by Monckton Hoffe) ran for just 15 nights. Odds and Ends, an ‘intimate’ review production starting Alice Delysia, was more successful, and ran for over 400 performances.
The stage saw some incredible debuts in the early 20th Century with Ivor Novello appearing in 1921’s Deburau, and Vivian Leigh in 1935’s The Mask of Virtue, where Laurence Olivier first saw his future wife perform. 1952 saw the opening of Agatha Christie’s The Mousetrap, which ran at the theatre for over 20 years before its move to the St Martin’s, where it is now the longest-running production in history.
After a string of various productions (including Christopher Hampton’s adaptation/translation of Les Liasons Dangereuses), the theatre was bought by the Ambassador Theatre Group, who split the theatre into two small spaces. The Royal Court Upstairs was resident in this space until 1999, when the theatre was converted into its original layout and renamed the New Ambassadors.
The early 21st century saw intimate theatrical productions begin staged, such as Krapp’s Last Tape, Someone Who’ll Watch Over Me, and The Vagina Monologues, before moving into the larger scale with shows such as Sweeney Todd and Little Shop of Horrors.
In April 2007, ATG sold the venue to Sir Stephen Waley-Cohen, who refurbished the venue and changed the name back to the Ambassadors. In October of that same year, Stomp transferred into the venue from the Vaudeville theatre. In January 2020, the Ambassadors Theatre is now back in the hands of Ambassador Theatre Group.
The Ambassadors Theatre now plays host a number of short-run plays, musicals and events.