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Established in 1970, King's Head Theatre is now over 50 years old. Here are just a few of the highlights of our incredible journey so far...​

1970 | Dan Crawford founds the first pub theatre in London since Shakespeare’s day and King’s Head Theatre is born. Dan Crawford serves as Artistic Director for 35 years.

1983 | A revival of Mr Cinders, opens at King’s Head Theatre before transferring to the West End. It goes on to run for 527 performances.

1983 | Noel and Gurtie, starring Joanna Lumley, premieres at King’s Head Theatre.

1985 | Hugh Grant makes his acting debut at King’s Head Theatre.

1986 | Maureen Lipman stars in Olivier Award-nominated Wonderful Town at King’s Head Theatre.

1988 | The premier of Tom Stoppard’s Artist Descending a Staircase opens at King’s Head Theatre before transferring to Broadway.

1991 | Steven Berkoff directs & stars in the UK premiere of Kvetch at the King’s Head Theatre.

2002 | DanStephanie Crawford receive Her Majesty the Queen’s Golden Jubilee Award for Contribution to the Arts, & The Trainee Resident Directors Scheme wins the Royal Anniversary Trust Award.

2006 | The documentary King’s Head Theatre: A Maverick in London, is made. It airs on SkyARTS World for 3 years.

2010 | Opera Up Close, founded by Adam Spreadbury-MaherRobin Norton-Hale become resident company for 4 years. Adam becomes Artistic Director of King’s Head Theatre.

2011 | La bohème wins the Olivier Award for Best New Opera Performance.

2012 | Vieux Carre by Tennessee Williams receives its UK premiere before transferring to the West End.

2015 | King’s Head Theatre forms a new charity to secure the future of the theatre.

2015 | Shock Treatment, the sequel to The Rocky Horror Show Picture Show has its world premiere at King’s Head Theatre.

2015 | Trainspotting is first performed at King’s Head Theatre, hitting its 900th performance in August 2017.

2016 | 43,857 audience members see a show at our London home - our highest footfall ever!

2017 | King’s Head Theatre announces the transfer of La bohème & Strangers in Between to Trafalgar Studios 2 in London’s West End. La bohème goes on to be nominated for Best New Opera Production at the Olivier Awards.

2019 | King’s Head Theatre’s production of Kevin Elyot’s Coming Clean transfers to Trafalgar Studios 2 in London’s West End.

2021 | Mark Ravenhill is appointed as Artistic Director

2022 | Kings Head Theatre finally has its 50th birthday celebration, delayed because of Covid-19.

KHT50: Barstools to Broadway plays for one week bringing together work which premiered at King’s Head Theatre in the 1970s & 1980s. These plays included Timberlake Wertenbaker’s The Third, performed at the V&A & read by Harriet Walter & Gemma Whelan, directed by Audrey Sheffield.

Other plays are read at KHT include Tom Stoppard’s Artist Decending a Staircase, directed by original director Tim Luscombe. Stephen Jeffreys' Like Dolls or Angels, directed by his wife Annabel Arden and performed by Isobel Adomakoh Young Joel MaccormackBryony Lavery’s Grandmother’s Steps, performed by Showstoppers! stars Ruth Bratt & Lucy Trodd, directed by Abigail Anderson. Victoria Wood’s musical Good Fun, directed by original cast member Annabel Leventon. Finally, we closed the week with Elegies for Angels Punks Raging Queens, directed by writer Bill Russell and joined by 30 recent graduates. 

2022 | Produced the UK Premier of Freud’s Last Session which was developed into a major motion picture starring Anthony Hopkins

2022/23 | co-produced Mediocre White Male starring Will Close (Olivier Award Winner ’24, Best Supporting Actor) and written by Will Close and Joe von Malachowski

2023 | Kings Head Pub Theatre closes its doors after 53 years, on the 13th August 2023, with a special event starring Steven Berkoff, Mark Gatiss, Ian Hallard, Dame Janet Suzman, Linda Marlowe, Freddie Love, Saul Boyer and Bold Mellon

2023 | Hosted Guest Artistic Directors Isabel Adomakoh Young (Orlando, As You Like It, Globe Theatre), Tom Ratcliffe (Writer, Wreckage - UK Tour. Director, Breeding by Barry McStay), Tania Azevedo (Director, But I’m A Cheerleader) and David Cumming (Writer & Performer Operation Mincemeat, Olivier Award Winner ’24 Best New Musical)

2024 | Kings Head Theatre opened at its new building 116p Upper St on 5th January with Exhibitionists by Shaun McKenna and Andrew Van Sickle