St Martin's Theatre, London
"A very cosy and discreet little place"
The St Martin's Theatre, located in West Street, was designed by the architect W G R Spraque in 1913 as a companion to The New Ambassadors Theatre which is next door to the theatre. Although The New Ambassadors Theatre was completed and opened in 1913, the out break of the First World War put the building of The St Martin's Theatre 'on-hold' and it was not completed until three years later in 1916.
When The St Martin's did finally open on Thursday 23 November 1916 did was described as "a very cosy and distreet little place, all soft-coloured wood panelling and peacock-blue hangings, with no touch of gilding except on the lamp brackets." The warm polished wood interior remains down to today and is unique within London's West End theatres.
Notable productions at The St Martin's Theatre include the premiere production of the popular JB Priestly play When We Are Married in 1938. In 1945 Edward Percy's murder tale The Shop At Sly Corner enjoyed a run of 863 performances - a notably long run at the time.
More recently Anthony Shaffer's thriller Sleuth had a run of 3 years starting in 1970. The theatre is now best known for being the home of The Mousetrap. Agatha Christie's The Mousetrap originally opened at the adjacent Ambassadors Theatre on 25 November 1952 before it transferred to the St Martins Theatre on 25 March 1974 - where it has been ever since!
In the theatre's main foyer there is a sign (on the right hand side as you go in from the street) which proudly states the exact performance number of The Mousetrap that you are about to see! Why not make a note of it in your programme...
We are sure that when you visit The St Martin's Theatre you too will be impressed, as was the audience at the theatre's opening night, by this 'cosy little theatre'.