Royal Opera House, Covent Garden


Connections Sort descending Author name Excerpt
Education Elizabeth Grant
While the family resided in London, theatre-going provided another much-welcomed form of education and entertainment. EG once attended a production of The Caravan, featuring John Kemble , in which Carlo, the famous Newfoundland...
Employer Andrea Levy
During her early, drifting years AL worked designing woven textiles, but realised in about ten minutes that designing was not for her.
Levy, Andrea. “Back to my Own Country”. British Library Windrush Stories.
She worked as an assistant buyer for various shops, then worked in the...
Family and Intimate relationships Sophia Lee
SL 's father, John Lee , was a quarrelsome and impecunious actor. The year of her birth he acted at Richmond and Covent Garden , with an interim desertion to Drury Lane , where, however...
Family and Intimate relationships Fanny Kemble
FK 's father, the actor Charles Kemble , inherited the management of Covent Garden Theatre in London in 1817 (at a time when it was in financial difficulties) when his brother John Philip Kemble retired.
Marshall, Dorothy. Fanny Kemble. Weidenfeld and Nicholson, 1977.
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Family and Intimate relationships Sarah Gardner
The young actress Sarah Cheney married William Gardner , a journeyman actor at Covent Garden .
Blain, Virginia, Patricia Clements, and Isobel Grundy, editors. The Feminist Companion to Literature in English: Women Writers from the Middle Ages to the Present. Yale University Press; Batsford, 1990.
Family and Intimate relationships Susanna Haswell Rowson
Susanna Haswell married William Rowson . He was a musician (playing the trumpet for the Royal Horse Guards ) and sometimes an actor with Covent Garden Theatre , as well as dealing in hardware. He...
Friends, Associates Mary Agnes Hamilton
She describes, without naming names, her friendship with a German singer of Wagnerian roles, first met when he sang Tristan at Covent Garden in 1923. She met him nine years later in New York, found...
Friends, Associates Dinah Mulock Craik
In London, the young Dinah Mulock was able to attend the theatre regularly, thanks to the offer of a private Covent Garden Theatre box for her family from Charles James Mathews and his wife...
Leisure and Society Mary Brunton
As tourists MB and her husband were just as interested in cultural events, industries, and industrial and military trade as they were in, for instance, old buildings. On her first visit to London she attended...
Literary responses Claire Luckham
Patrick Sandford , who directed the first production, found exciting challenges in the play's shift in register from the stylised high comedy of the stage of Covent Garden , to the raw sometimes violent naturalism...
Occupation Elizabeth Inchbald
EI made her London stage debut, at Covent Garden ; she played the breeches role of Bellario in Fletcher 's Philaster.
Manvell, Roger. Elizabeth Inchbald: England’s Principal Woman Dramatist and Independent Woman of Letters in 18th Century London. University Press of America, 1987.
The London Stage 1660-1800. Southern Illinois University Press, 1968.
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Occupation Elizabeth Inchbald
EI performed in both winter and summer seasons, at Covent Garden and the Little Theatre, Haymarket (under manager George Colman ). During the season 1780-1781, the Covent Garden theatre paid her two pounds a week...
Occupation Fanny Kemble
FK , not yet twenty, made a triumphant Covent Garden Theatre debut as Shakespeare 's Juliet, saving her father 's company from bankruptcy.
Blain, Virginia, Patricia Clements, and Isobel Grundy, editors. The Feminist Companion to Literature in English: Women Writers from the Middle Ages to the Present. Yale University Press; Batsford, 1990.
Marshall, Dorothy. Fanny Kemble. Weidenfeld and Nicholson, 1977.
Stephen, Sir Leslie, and Sidney Lee, editors. The Dictionary of National Biography. Smith, Elder, 1908.
Allibone, S. Austin, editor. A Critical Dictionary of English Literature and British and American Authors Living and Deceased. Gale Research, 1965.
Occupation Fanny Kemble
She toured England, Scotland, and Ireland with the Covent Garden Theatre company, met Walter Scott , and was feted by Lady Morgan in Dublin.
Marshall, Dorothy. Fanny Kemble. Weidenfeld and Nicholson, 1977.
In May of 1831 she was presented...
Occupation Sarah Gardner
During this time, having changed theatres from Drury Lane, where she had made her debut, she appeared during the winter seasons with her husband's employers at Covent Garden , but in her initial year there...


22 September 1742
Susannah Cibber made a triumphant comeback at Covent Garden Theatre after some years off stage following her highly publicised adultery.
The popular actress Kitty Clive argued in The Case of Mrs Clive Submitted to the Publick that she had been unfairly treated by the managers of both London theatres (Drury Lane and Covent Garden ).
1 February 1749
The Behn -Southerne play of Oroonoko had the single most important performance . . . in its long history
Basker, James G. “Intimations of Abolitionism in 1759: Johnson, Hawkesworth, and Oroonoko”. The Age of Johnson, edited by Paul J. Korshin and Jack Lynch, AMS Press, pp. 47 -66.
watched by two Africans who had shared the hero's fate of betrayal into slavery.
10 July 1764
A new play, The True-born Scotsman, a caricature of Scottishness by the Irishman Charles Macklin , opened at Smock Alley Theatre (or the Theatre Royal) in Dublin.
29 January 1768
The earlier of Oliver Goldsmith 's two comedies, The Good Natur'd Man, opened at Covent Garden Theatre , where it ran long enough for three author's benefit nights. It was printed the same year.
November 1802
Thomas Holcroft 's "A Tale of Mystery", produced at Covent Garden , formally introduced melodrama to the English stage.
20 September 1808
The Theatre Royal, Covent Garden , was completely destroyed by fire.
18 September 1809
The new Covent Garden Theatre was opened, only to become the scene of massive riots.
15 December 1809
The Old Price Riots at the new Covent Garden Theatre , which had raged since 18 September, ended with a formal apology from manager Charles Kemble to the audience.
7 June 1810
William Charles Macready (son of an actress and an actor-manager) began his successful acting career as Romeo in a performance in Birmingham; he became a specialist in Shakespeare an roles.
29 June 1812
Sarah Siddons , the famous actress, now aged fifty-six, played her last night (as Lady Macbeth) at the Covent Garden Theatre .
Stage costuming underwent a radical change after Planché was commissioned by Charles Kemble to design new dresses for the production of King John at the Covent Garden Theatre .
6 December 1830
Lucia Vestris became the first long-term female theatre manager of the century, when she reopened the Olympic Theatre .
May 1833
Drury Lane Theatre and Covent Garden Theatre came under the same management, with bizarre results for the acting companies.
Helen Faucit made her first important acting appearance at the Covent Garden Theatre, aged eighteen.