The Piccadilly Theatre was designed by Bertie Crewe and Edward A. Stone for the impresario Edward Laurillard who aimed for space and comfort. Its 1,400-seat auditorium makes it one of the largest theatres built in London in the twentieth century. The fittings and decoration in green and gold were carried out in the modernist Art Deco style by French designers Marc-Henry Levy and Gaston Lavardet. The four-storey stone facade curves gracefully round the corner on which the theatre stands, only a few meters away from Piccadilly Circus and Regent Street.
In 1943, the Piccadilly Theatre was damaged by a flying bomb attack. It was reopened in 1945 with a Sigh no more from Noël Coward which was coldly received by the public. In 1955, the interior was completely redecorated and the seating being reduced to 1,150 seats.
During the next five years Donald Albery and Bernard Delfont fought for the acquisition of the Piccadilly! Donald Albery finally acquired the theatre against stiff competition from Bernard Delfont. American drama and musicals gave the Piccadilly some prestige in the '60s and '70s . Productions include Who's afraid of Virginia Wolf? , Streetcar Named Desire, Clarence Darrow starring Henri Fonda...
After a decade of variety and dance - notably the award-winning ballet Swan Lake, Musicals came back with productions such as Spend Spend Spend, Noises Off, Guys and Dolls starring Don Jonson or Patrick Swayze, and Grease!