The Turing Machine (Palais-Royal)

Palais-Royal theater, alan Turing, The Turing Machine, Enigma machine
Théâtre du Palais-Royal

Until November 30, 2022



Théâtre du Palais-Royal
38 rue de Montpensier, 75001 Paris
Capacity 716 seats


1 hour and 25 minutes 

No intermission



Suitable for all ages

French with no surtitles


The Turing Machine returns to the Palais-Royal theater as Benoît Solès' play celebrates the visionary and fascinating man who decoded the Enigma machine used by the Nazi army during the Second World War. Through its modern writing soaked in dramatic tension, the play offers a sensitive, funny, and breathtaking story about the English genius. 


The Turing Machine won four Molières at its premiere in 2018, including Best Performance, proving that it is a show that has turned many heads!


The Turing Machine recites the story of Alan Turing, an English mathematician, who built a “thinking” machine that turned out to be the first computer. During the Second World War, he was recruited by the British secret service and his methods made it possible to break the Enigma machine used by the Nazi armies. Although this is the beginning of his story, it doesn't stop there. Forced into silence by the secret service, he was later convicted of homosexuality, before committing suicide.


The Turing Machine retells the extraordinary destiny of a genius who was unjustly kept in the shadows and crushed by the self-righteous "machine" of 1950s England. Through an ingenious set design that skillfully integrates video into the staging as well as goes back and forth in time to present two talented actors that will retrace the gripping and extraordinary story of Alan Turing.


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Théâtre du Palais-Royal

38 rue de Montpensier, 75001 Paris

In 1637, Cardinal Richelieu had a theatre built in one of the buildings of the Palais Royal. Named Théâtre Beaujolais, it was used by Molière's troupe. When the latter died, his collaborator, Jean-Baptiste Lully, transformed it into a music academy and it was in this theatre that, in 1735, the first performance of the opera-ballet Les Indes Galantes took place. Victim of two fires, the theatre was rebuilt several times and bought in 1787 by Mademoiselle Montansier. She welcomed many Italian operas and the theatre had a number of different names: Théâtre Montansier, Théâtre de la Montagne, Théâtre du Péristyle du Jardin Égalité, etc.


After the ban came the successes...

In 1807, a decree limited the number of theatres in Paris to 8. The proximity of the theatre to the Comédie-Française forced Mademoiselle Montansier to settle at the Théâtre des Variétés. During the ban, comedies were prohibited and the theatre was used for acrobats and dog shows. After the July Revolution of 1830, the actor Dormeuil had the theatre completely rebuilt: the Théâtre du Palais-Royal as we know it today was inaugurated in 1831. Eugène Labiche and Georges Feydeau's first successes took place on the stage of the theatre: Un Fil à la Patte, Le Système Ribadier and The Italian Straw Hat. The theatre then hosted vaudevilles and operettas under the baton of Hervé, known as the father of the operetta. It is also at the Théâtre du Palais-Royal that many works by Jacques Offenbach saw the light of day, including the opera-bouffe La Vie Parisienne.


A theatre dedicated to French culture

In 1880, the architect Paul Sédille redecorated the auditorium with gilding and red velvet and added to the exterior of the building, the emergency exits were covered with mosaic, which make the facade of the theatre so charming. Ever since that date, the greatest figures of French theatre have taken turns on the stage: Mistinguett, Tristan Bernard, Zizi Jeanmaire, Jean Marais, Louis de Funès, Raymond Devos etc ... In 1989, François Lemonnier, Francis Nani, and Christian Azzopardi took over the direction of the building. Since then, the best contemporary French plays have run alongside Feydeau's farces. The Théâtre du Palais-Royal has become one of the essential places for French theatrical creation.


Fast facts

Capacity: 716

Handicap accessible? Unfortunately, no.

Air conditioning? Yes


How do I get to the Palais-Royal theatre?

The Palais-Royal theatre is accessible by metro lines 1, 3, 7, 14 and the closest metro stations are Palais-Royal - Musée du Louvre, Pyramides et Bourse. The theatre can also be reached with the bus at the station Palais-Royal by taking the line 20, 21, 27, 29, 39, 48, 67, 74, 81, 85 et 95. In case of difficulty finding the theatre, our hotline can be reached from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Paris time. For details, we invite you to consult the map above.

What do I do when I get to the Palais-Royal theatre?

We invite you to arrive 30 minutes before the beginning of the show, and present your voucher at the front desk. Palais-Royal's staff members will guide you to your seats.

Can I take photos during the The Turing Machine?

In order not to disturb the artists on stage, and for the comfort of other guests, you are not permitted to photograph, film, or record The Turing Machine for the duration of the show. As long as the performance is not currently in session, feel free to take a snapshot of the Palais-Royal theatre to remember your night out!

Is tipping customary?

Tips are not mandatory in Parisian theatres. However, ushers will usually expect a small tip of between €2 and €5, which you can give them when they've shown you to your seat. Fun fact: the French word for “tip” is “pourboire,” which literally translates to “to have a drink.”

Covid-19 Information

Specific measures and obligations may apply to this show. Before making your reservation, please check the updated information on our Covid-19 page: