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Hackney Empire London

Hackney Empire Tickets

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About the Hackney Empire

Hackney Empire is a stunning 20th-century music hall, but on stage it delivers a fantastic programme of 21st-century entertainment. From music hall to bingo hall and now to a major entertainment hub, this is one theatre that is well worth visiting off the West End’s beaten track.

Prolific Victorian and Edwardian theatre architect Frank Matcham designed Hackney Empire and it opened in 1901. With its distinctive terracotta exterior and grand interior, this Grade II listed venue is just as impressive as any of its central London counterparts.

Over the 20th century, the Empire has gone through a number of transformations, and in the 1980s it was even up for demolition! Thanks to the dedicated work of C.A.S.T. (Cartoon Archetypical Slogan Theatre), it was saved and went on to become a home for alternative comedy in the ‘80s and ‘90s.

The theatre underwent a multi-million-pound refurbishment from 2001-2004, partly funded by local boy Lord Sugar, but its original period features that make it so unique are still standing proud.

Hackney Empire now welcomes a variety of comedy and theatre shows each year, including an acclaimed pantomime.

Map and Address

291 Mare Street, Hackney, London, E8 1EJ

Hackney Empire is located right in the heart of Hackney Central, next to the Town Hall on Mare Street. This bustling thoroughfare is one of the best-linked in East London, but it also has a huge range of shops, eateries and green spaces nearby to enjoy away from the crowds of central London. Take the time to explore the area’s distinct personality before a show, with a walk along Regent’s Canal, a browse through the independent market, or a visit to The Viktor Wynd Museum of Curiosities, Fine Art & Natural History. Mare Street is best connected by bus and Overground rather than the tube, which are covered by TfL prices.

Frequently Asked Questions

What time does the Hackney Empire box office open and how do I collect tickets?

The box office is usually open from 10am - 6pm on Monday-Friday, except Bank Holidays, for in person and telephone bookings and ticket collection. On weekends, the box office is open two hours before the start of a performance.

What time does Hackney Empire open for a show?

The theatre’s doors open between 45 and 60 minutes before the start of a performance, and you are welcome to enjoy a drink at the bar at any time after this.

What food and drink are available at Hackney Empire?

There are bars at the back of each seating level, and a champagne bar at the entrance to the Dress Circle, one floor up from the lobby. Visitors can purchase a variety of alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks including wine and beer, as well as small cold snacks. Hot food is not sold at the venue. Bars are open before the show and during the interval.

Does Hackney Empire have a cloakroom?

There is a cloakroom on the ground floor of the theatre, and visitors can check bags in here free of charge. Large bags will not be allowed into the auditorium and security checks are in place at the entrance and in the cloakroom.

Where should I eat near Hackney Empire?

The theatre is located on Mare Street in the centre of Hackney, with lots of international restaurants and eateries nearby. Try Mare Street Market for casual, open-plan dining. Options include pizzas and small plates with Indian, Middle Eastern and European flavours. Popham’s is another good option; this popular local bakery becomes a fantastic Italian restaurant by night.

What is the best hotel to stay at near Hackney Empire?

Hotels in Hackney are cheaper than central London and for theatregoers on a budget, Travelodge is on Amhurst Street, just five minutes away from the venue. If you travel half an hour to Shoreditch, you will find some unique boutique hotels, including the original Hoxton hotel, while trendy apartment-style accommodation Kingsland Locke, with a microbrewery and Latin American street food options, is great for extended stays and just 12 minutes away on public transport.

How do I contact the box office?

For ticketing enquiries, the box office can be contacted by phone on 020 8510 4500 or email at Phone lines are open from 10am-6pm on weekdays, and two hours before a performance on weekends.
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