Theatre Guides

Best seats at the Olivier, National Theatre London

Blog post   •   Nov 30, 2010 16:26 GMT

The National Theatre houses three auditoriums which are the Cottesloe, the Lyttelton and the largest, the Olivier. Named after the National’s original artistic director, Oscar-winning actor Laurence Olivier, the Olivier has a seating capacity of 1,160 on two levels – Stalls and Dress Circle. If you are considering buying tickets to see a show at the Olivier, then careful consideration should go into your decision on where to sit, as some seats aren’t as good as others which can ruin your theatre experience. The National Theatre is a new complex, however, and so compared with some of London’s older theatres, there are not as many uncomfortable, cramped or restricted view seats, yet there are certain ones which give the greatest views. So which seats are the best at the Olivier Theatre?

The Stall seating section is located on the ground floor of the auditorium and is the closest to the stage. You may wish to avoid the first couple of rows as you may have to crane your neck to see everything clearer as they are very close to the stage. Although these seats are less comfortable, they are also discounted and can be worth the cheaper price if you are willing to sacrifice comfort. Legroom and views are great in almost all of the other seats in the Stalls at the Olivier, with central seats offering the greatest views.

The Dress Circle is located above the Stalls and has a larger seating capacity. All seats offer good views but central seats in the first couple of rows offer the best and you will feel very much a part of the action being in these rows. The rake is very steep, so sitting as close to the front as possible is your best bet in the Circle. Legroom is also very good in all seats.

If you have bought National Theatre London tickets to see a show at the Olivier, then ooking at an Olivier Theatre seating plan will help your decision in choosing where to sit. Most seats offer great views, however, and there are no metal poles blocking your vision, and no particular areas with cramped legroom. The seats mentioned here, however, present the best views in the auditorium and should be considered if you want only the best view.