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IN THE NEWS
TOUR OF THE MONTH
ON THIS DAY IN LONDON
23rd April 1959 1st heliport in Britain opens in London
23rd April 1925 1st London performance of operetta Fasquita staged
23rd April 1881 Gilbert and Sullivan's opera Patience produced in London
23rd April 1775 Artist J.M.W. Turner was born in Covent Garden, London.
23rd April 1705 Richard Steele's Tender Husband, premieres in London
23rd April 1702 The Coronation of Anne I in Westminster Abbey.
23rd April 1685 The Coronation of James II (and VII of Scotland) in Westminster Abbey.
23rd April 1661 English king Charles II crowned in London
23rd April 1661 The Coronation of Charles II in Westminster Abbey.
The Gielgud Theatre
The place where Angela Lansbury's mother Moyna Macgill debuted.
Location: Shaftesbury Avenue
Description: The Gielgud Theatre actually opened here on December 27, 1906 as the Hicks Theatre in honour of actor, manager and playwright Seymour Hicks. It was built in conjunction with the Queen's Theatre, which opened a year later across the road.
They were designed by W.G.R. Sprague in an extravagant Louis XVI style. It opened to Hick's The Beauty of Bath.
During an early production, midway through the 1909 run of Hick's The Dashing Little Duke, a first occurred. Hicks' wife, Ellaline Terriss, played the title role of The Duke, and when she was ill, her husband stepped into the role!
In 1994, in anticipation of the 1997 opening of a reconstruction of Shakespeare's Globe Theatre on the South Bank by Sam Wanamaker, the theatre was renamed in honour of British actor John Gielgud.
In 2014 actress Angela Lansbury returned to the West End after 40 years away, and starred in Noel Coward's Blithe Spirit. This was further remarkable for the fact that her mother Moyna Macgill had made her debut on stage here in 1918's Love in a Cottage.