Designed by the prolific theatre architect, Frank Matcham, the Lyric Hammersmith is a beautiful and ornate, Victorian theatre. First opening in 1895, the theatre was reconstructed in a nearby site, reopening in 1979. It has since become a leading London venue with up to 1,000 performances each year. The current theatre is now more of an entertainment complex, boasting a recording studio, editing suite, rehearsal spaces, dance studio, cinema and two auditoria for theatre productions. The stages work well for hosting both small and large scale productions; its main stage holds up to 550 and sees the big scale shows, while the smaller is suitable for up to 120, used for emerging companies. The range of facilities supports its eclectic programme, designed to not only be creative and entertaining, but provocative and inspiring. Examining its portfolio of past productions, controversial and comical plays that no doubt aimed to push boundaries include ‘Seventeen’, ‘Shopping and F**cking’, ‘Herons’ and ‘Pleasure’. The venue also houses west London’s largest youth theatre, the Lyric Young Company, who develop and nurture the skills of young people through the arts. Its programme further caters to little ones, with its section of the programme dedicated to ‘Lyric Children’. Previous pantomimes and musicals include the adaptation of Roald Dahl’s ‘Fantastic Mr Fox’ and ‘Jack and the Beanstalk’.