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The Whitefriars Theatre

Picture of the Bell Savage Inn-Yard

Whitefriars
The Whitefriars Theatre was located in the priory of the Whitefriars monastery on the north side of the River Thames (named after the colour of the monk's habits). Michael Drayton and Thomas Woodford converted the refectory hall to a private theatre in 1606 following the success of the Blackfriars.

Both of these early private playhouses were roofed, fully seated and used artificial light. London's private playhouses were often used by companies of child actors. Children of the King's Revels occupied it from 1608 to 1609, succeeded by Children of the Queen's Revels from 1609 to 1613.

In the latter year the Queen's Revels merged with an adult company, Lady Elizabeth's Men, and in 1614 the combined troupe moved to the Hope Theatre.  By 1629 the Whitefriars had been replaced by the Salisbury Court Theatre.

The Whitefriars Theatre - Shakespeare's London History Lives On...
The history of Theatres that were prominent during the life of Shakespeare is fascinating and we have provided the London Map detailing Theatres that Shakespeare would have most certainly known and visited and quite probably have acted in. We have researched the history and locations of many of these theatres and plotted their locations into a modern Map of London. The names of many of these theatres still live on in London as they are reflected in the names of many current London Roads. Although we are born in bred in London we were not aware of this. We were amazed to find a ' Whitefriars Street' on the exact site of the Whitefriars Theatre, although the Whitefriars had already gone in Shakespeare's time their name lives on in 'Whitefriars Street'. These links with the past and Shakespeare's London are endless.

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