London's Dress Circle, which has long operated under the slogan "the longest-running showbusiness and musical theatre shop in the world," will close its doors on August 15.
The historic shop, located in London's theatre district of Covent Garden, first opened its doors in 1977 and has since been the go-to place for theater merchandise. It has also hosted many book and CD signings with countless stars.
A statement on the shop's website reads:
"Over the past months we have tried in vain to negotiate with our landlord to move our shop into smaller and more cost effective premises. The cost of keeping Dress Circle open in the current location is too high, and it has become apparent that we will not be able to dispose of our current lease. The downturn in the economy has also taken its toll on us, as well as the ever changing way that people are buying music. With CDs becoming relics and downloads being more popular, Dress Circle, the shop, has struggled to keep up for a long time and we have reached the point that we are no longer able to continue.
"We were hoping that the 2012 Olympics might bring in some much needed tourism to the Theatre world and bring some customers through our doors, but Monmouth Street is even quieter than usual and so it seems are the rest of the shops in London."
The shop was founded with the intention of providing an unrivalled selection of musical theatre and cabaret related merchandise. The shop offers official merchandise from West End and Broadway shows, musical theatre cast and soundtrack CDs and DVDs, Libretti printed music, books and many theatre events.
Dress Circle will continue to offer merchandise through its website.