Leeds Grand Theatre
Visitors to Leeds looking for a night out at the ballet, opera or theatre will love the Leeds Grand Theatre. The programme offers a wide variety of genres, from classic musicals like the Rocky Horror Show and Priscilla Queen of the Desert, to the more traditional sounds of the Grimthorpe Colliery Band and the Glenn Miller Orchestra. There is plenty of good theatre here too, with everything from Shakespeare to Alan Bennet plays on the menu.
From opera to balletThe Grand Theatre is also home to the English opera company, Opera North. One of Europe’s leading arts organisations, Opera North aims to reinvent the classics, championing lesser-known works and turning conventional perceptions on their head.
If you’d prefer to see a ballet, the Northern Ballet regularly visits the theatre. Deemed to be one of the greatest ballet companies in the world, they have performed everywhere from China to Barcelona. Catch them on their home turf of Leeds and you’ll be in for a treat.
The history of the theatreThe Leeds Grand Theatre was built in 1878 as a more respectable alternative for the music hall singers who could often be found performing in pubs at the time. It was designed by James Robertson Watson, who had recently returned from a tour of Europe.
The influence of the architecture he saw on his travels, especially the churches, is clear in the design of the Grand Theatre. The outside of the building is a blend of Scottish Baronial and Romanesque styles, while the spires have a very Gothic flavour. The whole effect makes a night at this theatre well worth dressing up for.
The Radisson Blu Hotel in Leeds is less than a 10-minute walk away, making it the perfect choice for a theatre break.