“This year marks the 50th anniversary of our main performance space – the Playhouse. As part of the anniversary celebrations your Board of Trustees is honoured and excited to announce that our President, Dame Judi Dench, has agreed to our proposal that the Playhouse be renamed as the Judi Dench Playhouse.
Our Playhouse will be the first public theatre to bear her name. It is a fitting way to mark both her long service as our President and the 50th anniversary of the opening of The Playhouse at The Questors Theatre in 1964 by HM Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother. It shows the high personal regard she has for The Questors and all it has achieved.
Dame Judi has sent the following message to all of us; in it she recalls the occasions on which she and her late husband, Michael Williams, performed on our stage, the first of these visits being as long ago as 1972. She writes:
“The Questors’ theatre building is a landmark of theatre architecture, built by this remarkable company. I send congratulations to you all for the Golden Jubilee celebrations and on the continued success of the company. I am absolutely thrilled and very flattered to add my name in celebration of this achievement and I have very fond memories of the recitals that Michael and I were invited to perform there.”
We would have loved to have Dame Judi with us on Saturday 18 October for our gala celebration of the anniversary but unfortunately this is not possible due to filming commitments. We are trying to find a space in her diary for a visit to The Questors next year, and this is entirely appropriate as 2015 marks her 30th anniversary as our President.
It is important to make it absolutely clear that the name of The Questors is not changed or diluted by this addition. Rather it will be enhanced by having a truly great name from the world of theatre attached to our Playhouse, in the same way as we have names from the world of theatre for all our rehearsal rooms and for the Studio.
Every member since 1929 who has given their time and striven for excellence has played their part in creating The Questors and its remarkable position in the world of theatre. We should all feel proud to be associated with it.”