St Martin’s Lane Covent Garden London WC2N 4ES
The Coliseum opened in 1904 as a 'theatre of variety', straddling the gap between music hall and opera house. An Edwardian beauty, designed by famed theatre architect Frank Matcham, it remains the largest theatre in London, with nearly 2500 seats and the widest proscenium arch in the capital. Known in its early years as the 'people’s palace', it retains something of that democratic spirit, around the corner from the ROH but a million miles away in its mission as London’s 'other' opera house. The home of the English National Opera and the English National Ballet, it puts on operas sung in English and is renowned for its award-winning contemporary, avant-garde and populist productions. Occasional tours are available, usually scheduled to coincide with productions; call the box office to check.