Sadler’s Wells is embedded in the heart of Islington, near Angel, and is currently the sixth theatre to be on the site since 1683. It has two theatres: Sadler’s Wells Theatre and the Lilian Baylis Studio, both owned by the Sadler’s Wells Trust, which works with charitable trusts and foundations to present their year-round programme.
Sadler’s Wells is acknowledged as being one of the world’s pinnacle dance venues. The theatre acts as a stage for visiting companies, as well as producing its own work with a number of closely associated artists and companies. In recent years it has notably hosted the London International Mime Festival, which features the best in physical and visual theatre from international performers.
The current building was constructed in 1998, replacing the previous space, which was established in 1765. It has a capacity of 1,500, spread across three seated levels in one venue whilst the other - the Lilian Baylis Studio - seats 180 people. Both of these spaces were formed with the assistance of a large funding grant from the National Lottery.
The Lilian Baylis Studio is named in recognition of Lilian Baylis, a prolific theatre producer and manager, who oversaw The Old Vic, the Sadler’s Wells theatres, an opera company (later to be the English National Opera), a theatre company (which became the English National Theatre), and a ballet company (later to become The Royal Ballet).