The London Palladium was built in 1910 on the site of the former Henglers Circus which occupied the site from the 1880s. Built by Frank Matcham- the architect responsible for the London Coliseum- the building is grade II listed. During the early years the London Palladium was a premier venue for variety performances. During the 1950s ‘Sunday night at the London Palladium’ aired a weekly variety television show with great success. The show was owned by ATV which was owned by theatrical impresario Lew Grade. The format was revised during the 1980’s. During the 1960s the famous Judy Garland and Liza Minelli concert was televised live from the London Palladium. The London Palladium has also hosted the Laurence Olivier awards ceremony.
The wartime comics ‘The Crazy Gang’ began their long and distinguished career during the 1930’s at the London Palladium. The Crazy Gang consisted of Jimmy Nervo, Teddy Knox, Bud Flanagan, Chesney Allen, Charlie Naughton, Jimmy Gold and Eddie Gray. The Crazy gang played the Palladium from 1931 to 1939.
Large musical productions moved to the London Palladium during the 1980s. Yul Brynner’s celebrated version of ‘The King and I’ played here for a long and successful run. Michael Crawford, who famously played the Phantom in ‘The Phantom of the Opera’, starred in ‘Barnum’ at the London Palladium. Tommy Steele starred in an excellent and successful production of ‘Singing in the Rain’. Other successful shows include ‘Oliver!’, ‘La Cage Au Follies’, ‘Showboat’ and ‘Chitty Chitty Bang Bang’.