Royal Albert Hall
The Royal Albert Hall holds a special place in the architectural and cultural heritage of Great Britain. It was opened in 1871 by Queen Victoria as a tribute to her beloved husband Prince Albert.
The hall’s distinctive glass and iron dome rises above the northern edge of South Kensington. Wander around the hall’s exterior and gaze up at the mosaic frieze, which represents the triumph of art and science. Originally conceived of as a multipurpose “Central Hall”, today it hosts more than 350 events each year. Whether you prefer opera or rap, ballet or comedy, you’ll be sure to find the perfect evening of entertainment for you as part of the hall’s diverse programme. Be sure to plan ahead, as tickets for the 5,500-seat auditorium sell quickly all year round.
The opportunity to perform here has been the highlight of many artists’ careers. Legendary acts such as The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Led Zeppelin and Bob Dylan have all graced the opulent stage.
In summer, get swept away by the good-natured patriotic fervour of the BBC Henry Woods Promenade Concert, better known as “The Proms”. This eight-week-long classical music series culminates in “The Last Night of the Proms”, an event which is televised worldwide. True music aficionados may want to forgo a seat and opt for the standing area near the orchestra pit.
The Royal Albert Hall maintains a thriving educational programme, which ranges from school tours to community events. Join the one-hour Front of House Tour to experience the energy and buzz as the hall prepares for the evening’s performance. The tour includes visits to the Queen’s private suites and the Royal Retiring Room. Families with younger children may enjoy the Victorian Experience Tour, where two costumed characters lead an entertaining journey through the hall’s 140-year history.
On open days, pay a visit to the ground floor, which hosts an ever-changing exhibition series featuring anything from photographic displays to watercolours. And don’t forget to visit the bronze statue of Prince Albert himself, seated just across the road in the Albert Memorial.
The Royal Albert Hall is located in South Kensington. The nearest Underground stations are High Street Kensington, South Kensington and Knightsbridge.