It is with great sadness that we mark the passing of our longest-reigning monarch, Her Majesty the Queen.
Author The Old Vic
A great patron of the arts, Queen Elizabeth II first visited The Old Vic at 11 years old on 12 January 1938 at the request of Lilian Baylis who was a friend of her mother.
Along with her sister, Princess Margaret, she saw Tyrone Guthrie’s production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, starring Ralph Richardson as Bottom, Robert Helpmann as Oberon and Vivien Leigh as Titania.
On 6 May 1952 she returned as Queen to attend the Royal Gala performance of King Henry VIII and returned in March 1958 to mark the opening of a new annex, now home to the National Theatre Studios on Webber Street, where she was entertained by a private performance of scenes from Shakespeare, including the play scene from A Midsummer Night’s Dream.
Since its inception in 1818, The Old Vic has borne witness to the reigns of two great female monarchs, encompassing 134 years of its 204-year history; Queen Victoria, to whom we owe our name, and her great, great granddaughter, Queen Elizabeth II.
Our thoughts are with our Bicentenary Patron, His Majesty King Charles, and the Royal Family at this time.