With so many fabulous shows playing all over London’s West End, it can be difficult to decide where to spend your evening (or afternoon). So here are my recommendations on the best musicals in London this autumn.
The nights are drawing in, Strictly and X-Factor are back on the TV, the weather is gloomy and the countdown to Christmas has begun. So, what better time to forget reality for a bit and spend a night at the theatre? But what should you see? Here are some suggestions…
There is nothing I can say about Hamilton that hasn’t already been said. So I’m not going to say anything. Just get a ticket, you won’t regret it!
(For those of you that haven’t heard Hamilton tells the story of American Founding Father, Alexander Hamilton, via hip-hop, pop, soul and the odd show tune. It shouldn’t work but it does and it’s absolutely brilliant).
Don’t let the fact that this is one of the hottest tickets in town put you off. It’s not as difficult as you think to get in the room where it happens.
Don’t throw away your shot – how to get tickets
If you can visit at short notice you have a couple of options.
- Check Ticketmaster for returns over the next 10 days. I’ve used this and managed to pick up a great seat for a week later so it’s worth regularly checking.
- Visit the Victoria Palace Theatre on the day of the show you wish to see. Sometimes there are on the day returns. Be prepared to wait for a while though and it’s not guaranteed there will be any returns.
- Enter the daily lottery on the Hamilton App (download via your App Store) or online via their website. A pair of tickets for each performance are available for £10 each to the lucky winner. A huge saving!
If you need a bit more notice…
- Keep an eye out for the next release of tickets (sign up to the Hamilton London mailing list or keep an eye on Twitter) and make sure you are ready to buy as soon as they go on sale. Make sure your Ticketmaster account is up to date and you are logged in. Have a couple of different dates in mind so if your first option is not available you have a backup.
Check out my post on how to get tickets to popular events for some hints and tips. I wrote this with concerts in mind but most of it applies to any popular events, be that a gig or theatre show.
We’ve all heard Dorothy’s story in The Wizard of Oz but what about the witches? What did they do before Dorothy arrived? How did the Wicked Witch of the West end up wicked (and is she really that wicked?) You’ll find out all that and more in Wicked.
Based on the novel by Gregory Maguire, the show tells the untold stories of the Witches of Oz and challenges your perception of good v evil.
Wicked has been wowing London audiences for over a decade now and has become one of the West End’s longest running shows. So that should give you an idea of just how good it is.
I was lucky enough to see the first London preview back in 2006. I think I was the only person in the audience that hadn’t seen it before – it has some very devoted fans. Despite seeing it many times since it is still just as good as the first time. One of the best musicals in London.
Wicked is playing at the Apollo Victoria Theatre. All you need to know about buying tickets can be found here.
Top Tip: A number of seats are released each day at 10 am for that day’s performances priced at £29.50. Tickets are sold on a first come first served basis so be prepared to get there early. I’ve not done it for a while but it used to be the front row sold. A pretty amazing experience to see the show that close up so it is well worth the effort to get their early and queue.
Being a fan of a band is usually for life and not just for Christmas but in the case of The Band it’s a bit of both.
You might think a musical featuring the music of Take That would be about Take That but that’s not the case. Instead, their music provides the backdrop for a story of friendship, teenage dreams and the enduring love of band over the years.
That said, there are plenty of references to keep Take That fans happy and of course, any chance to hear some of the greatest pop songs ever made is always welcome. Even if they are not performed by the band themselves. Step up Five to Five winners of the BBC’s Let It Shine (who do a pretty good job).
The Band Musical breaks off it’s UK tour to hit the West End (Theatre Royal Haymarket) this December. A limited run of 50 shows begins on the 1 December. Tickets start at just £15 and can be booked via The Theatre Royal Haymarket
Read my report from The Band’s West End Launch.
So that’s my round up of the best musicals in London. I’d love to hear what your favourite West End shows are (musical or not). Let me know in the comments below.