Where can you find the best places to buy theatre books from? What are the best theatre bookshops in London? Well, look no further. We’re completely addicted to theatre at A Younger Theatre and when it comes to getting our hands on the latest plays and theatre related books in London we suggest the following places.
1. National Theatre Bookshop – ££
National Theatre, Southbank,
An integral part to the National Theatre, the NT Bookshop (which is soon to relocated further inside the building) boasts one of the largest collections of plays, theory and general theatre books in London. Not only are the staff extremely helpful and knowledgeable, they play good music, have fun displays which tie in with their main house productions, and of course, have a heck load of theatre books. Entry Pass members also receive 10% off books!
2. Foyles – £££
113-119 Charing Cross Road, London, WC2H 0EB
There may be a lack of comfortable reading places but Foyles bookshop on Charing Cross Road is a theatre lover’s dream. Accommodating a whole corner on the ground floor, Foyles have an extensive collection of playtexts and theory books. If you’re a fan of Shakespeare you’ll be lost for hours.
3. Royal Court Theatre Bookshop – ££
Royal Court Theatre, Sloane Square, London, SW1W 8AS
If new writing is your thing then the bookshop at the Royal Court Theatre will be of use to you. It’s very small, but the real gem is being able to get hold of play-texts for £3 to £5, especially Royal Court Theatre productions. The only downside is the opening hours. Monday-Friday 4-8pm and Sundays 2-8pm.
4. Waterstones – Gower Street – £££
82 Gower Street, London, WC1E 6EQ
This may not be your most obvious spot for browsing theatre books, but due to the throng of students at local universities, Gower Street Waterstones is full to the brim of theatre books. There’s a good mix of play-texts with theory based books to draw you in, plus the theatre section is normally quiet during the week for optimum browsing.
5. Samuel French Bookshop – ££
52 Fitzroy Street, London, W1T 5JR
Known for their publishing of plays across the world, the Samuel French Bookshop is quite a hidden when it comes to theatre bookshops in London. They naturally stock most of their own publications with a focus on play-texts and musicals. It often feels like a quiet bookshop but don’t let that put you off. Make sure you try and scout out the bargains in their regular sales.
6. Southbank Centre Book Stalls – £
Under Waterloo Bridge, London
Come rain or shine you’ll find these book sellers under Waterloo Bridge on the Southbank. They may not have an extensive collection but it feels good to rummage in their theatre and poetry sections for second hand books. They’re open everyday too!
Some other suggestions for theatre bookshops and places that sell theatre books:
Any Amount of Books – ££
56 Charing Cross Road, London, WC2H 0QA
Calder Bookshop Theatre – ££
51 The Cut, London, SE1 8LF
Skoob Books – £
66 The Brunswick, off Marchmont Street, London, WC1N 1AE
Have we missed your favourite bookshop? Do you know a hidden gem to grab plays from? Leave a comment and let us and A Younger Theatre’s readers know.
Image credits to Oberon Books, Royal Court Theatre and The Londonist.