Newham’s award-winning theatre is one that is committed to promoting new talent. Whether it’s amateur performances or untold stories, the Theatre Royal promises to surprise audiences. The team are also passionate about transforming society via the arts, reaching out to connect with the community and inspire its youth. The site dates back to the late 19th century, built by actor Charles Dillon at the hand of architect James George Buckle. Dillon starred in its first performance, ‘Ritchielieu’, kickstarting its journey to success. Over the years, the theatre was redesigned and modified, including input from the Edwardian King of theatrical architecture, Frank Matcham. In the early 50s, the Theatre Workshop moved into the Theatre Royal, sacrificing everything to clean and repair the building that was beginning to flail. Their efforts were eventually recognised in 1955 when they represented England at the International Festival of Theatre, continuing on to establish the venue as ‘the people’s theatre’. Looking back through its history, some of the most notable performances to have been staged at the Theatre Royal include the transformation of ‘The Harder They Come’ into a musical for the West End, the premiere of ‘Five Guys Named Moe’, which went on to win the Olivier Award for ‘Best Entertainment’, and the first British Black musical ‘The Big Life’. Being the largest theatre in Stratford, the Theatre Royal remains one of eastern London’s leading venues for entertainment to this day.