Apollo Theatre to reopen at the end of March following ceiling collapse

The exterior of the Apollo Theatre in the West End
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Nica Burns has revealed that the Apollo Theatre on Shaftesbury Avenue will reopen on March 26, having been closed since December after part of the venue's ceiling collapsed.

Burns, chief executive of theatre operator Nimax, said that the grade II-listed West End theatre will reopen housing a new tenant. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, which was playing at the theatre at the time of the accident, announced in January that it would be moving to the neighbouring Gielgud Theatre.

Nica Burns, chief executive of Nimax Theatre. Photo: Eliza Power
Nica Burns, chief executive of Nimax Theatre. Photo: Eliza Power

She has confirmed that venue will reopen with the upper gallery closed and that she is talks to take on a transfer of the National Theatre of Scotland's production of Let the Right One In from the Royal Court.

Speaking to The London Evening Standard, she described her reaction to the incident on December 19, when plaster fell from the Apollo's ceiling injuring 76 audience members, seven of them seriously.

She said: "You never forget something like that, and nor should you. It was just heartbreaking: it wasn't about the building, it was about the people. Everyone involved in that night – audience, staff, their families – went through a completely traumatic event. I haven't said very much but I am so sorry to those people that they had to go through something like that. Sorrow is the word that sums it up for me. No one should be put through that and I am so sorry."

Meanwhile, she said that the cause of the accident is still unknown. "That's the one thing I can't speculate on," she added.