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Today, this icon reimagined, is a world of theatrical dining where there is no edge to the stage…. After undergoing a full refurbishment, the venue opens it’s famous doors once again in July 2021 as ‘The Windmill Soho’.
From 7pm until 2am from Wednesday to Saturday you can book a theatrical dining experience, showcasing mesmerising never-seen-before performances alongside a dining menu designed by Michelin starred Chef Andrew Mcleish and creative cocktail list by celebrated mixologist Andy Mil.
THE WINDMILL’S HISTORY
Great Windmill Street took it’s name from a Windmill that once stood there in the 18th century. In 1909 known the site became one of the first cinemas in London named ‘Palais De Luxe’.
In 1930 the visionary Laura Henderson purchased Palais De Luxe. Mrs Henderson famously broke conventions and challenged norms to create the famous institution known as the Windmill Theatre. Often graced celebrities & royalty, The Windmill developed the idea of ‘The Revudeville’ – a programme of continuous variety acts including singers, dancers, showgirls.
A breakthrough came when theatre manager Vivian Van Damm began to incorporate glamorous nude females on stage, inspired by the Folies Bergère and Moulin Rouge in Paris. This coup was made possible by convincing Lord Cromer, then Lord Chamberlain, in his position as the censor for all theatrical performances in London, that the display of nudity in theatres was not obscene: since the authorities could not credibly hold nude statues to be morally objectionable, the theatre presented its nude, the legendary “Windmill Girls” in motionless poses as living statues or tableaux vivants. The ruling: ‘If you move, it’s rude.’ The Windmill’s shows became a huge commercial success, and the Windmill Girl’s took their show on tour to other London and regional theatres.
The theatre’s famous motto ‘We Never Closed’ references the fact the theatre remained open throughout the height of the Blitz.
The Windmill Soho
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