Orange Tree Theatre

Theatre, Private theatres Richmond
31 Love It
Save it
Orange Tree Theatre

Formerly London's chintziest theatre, the Orange Tree is now one of its hippest

Starting life as a lunchtime pub venue in Richmond in 1971, the Orange Tree Theatre graduated to a bigger, 170-seat space across the road in the early ’90s, with a permanently in-the-round set up. Founder Sam Waters, who ran the theatre for 42 years, deserves an enormous amount of credit, and in its day the theatre gave a leg-up to everyone from Martin Crimp to Sean Holmes.

However, the later days of Waters's reign saw the Orange Tree become rather moribund, with a programme based upon revivals of obscure period dramas that played well with the loyal, elderly audience but seriously lacked diversity, and probably played a large amount in the Arts Council scrapping all funding to the theatre.

This turned out to be a mistake that will surely be reversed, as his successor Paul Miller has completely turned the theatre around, with a programme that still makes the odd nod to the period works of the past, but combines it with a formidable commitment to new writing and reaching out to younger and more diverse audiences. Alistair McDowell's mad dystopian thriller 'Pomona' scored acres of acclaim and tranferred to the National Theatre, sealing the theatre's resurrection.

In 2016 the Arts Council awarded the Orange Tree £75,000 in funding.


Venue name: Orange Tree Theatre
Address: 1
Clarence Street
Transport: Rail/Tube: Richmond
Do you own this business?
To improve this listing email:

Pick a date

  • Drama Until Saturday May 26 2018
  • Music venues Sunday May 6 2018
  • Drama Friday June 1 2018 - Saturday July 7 2018

You may be interested in:

Average User Rating

4.3 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:1
  • 4 star:3
  • 3 star:0
  • 2 star:0
  • 1 star:0
2 people listening

I like really like the Orange Tree Theatre. It's small but perfectly formed and there's a nice small-town vibe about the place, and I have enjoyed every visit here. They also have some interesting shows too. My last visit ended with the entire audience getting up and dancing at the end of the show before being led in a conga line through the entire building by the one-and-only Ida Barr! A great way to end her show and just another day at the Orange Tree.