Cameron Mackintosh to Endow London Theatres to Ensure Use in Perpetuity

News   Cameron Mackintosh to Endow London Theatres to Ensure Use in Perpetuity
 
London theatre producer Cameron Mackintosh is to endow the group of West End theatres that he owns with sufficient funds to ensure that they are maintained as live theatre venues in perpetuity.
Cameron Mackintosh
Cameron Mackintosh

According to a report in the U.K.'s Sunday Times, "Though most West End theatres are listed buildings protected from demolition, uncertainty hangs over their use whenever they are sold. The Empire in Leicester Square became a cinema, while the nearby Hippodrome is being converted into a casino and entertainment venue. Nobody has previously attempted to guarantee that the buildings remain a stage for plays and musicals." Though there are no firm details about how Mackintosh will achieve this aim, the Sunday Times suggests, "The most likely route to securing the future of the London theatres will be to transfer them to Mackintosh's personal foundation, or possibly a new trust." According to the news report, the foundation already has an endowment of £12 million, and gives about £1 million a year to causes such as underprivileged children and theatres in trouble.

Delfont Mackintosh, which has spent record sums in refurbishing the venues in its portfolio, currently comprises seven leading West End theatres: the Prince Edward (currently home to Jersey Boys), The Prince of Wales (Mamma Mia!), the Novello (formerly the Strand, currently hosting the transfer of the all-black production of Cat on a Hot Tin Roof from Broadway), the Queen's (Mackintosh's own production of Les Miserables), the Gielgud (formerly the Globe, currently home to Mackintosh's own production of Avenue Q before Mackintosh transfers Hair there from Broadway), the Noel Coward (formerly the Albery, currently housing Enron) and Wyndham's (currently showing An Inspector Calls, before Avenue Q moves there from the Gielgud).

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