Celebrate all that is great about the West End this Christmas.

Last year, the theatres were closed in the run-up to Christmas. This year, they are flinging their doors open with gusto. With the industry having taken a crippling hit during the pandemic, we should consider it almost a duty to book tickets and get our bums on their plush velvet seats.

As producer Eleanor Lloyd recently told The Sunday Times: ‘We were hanging on by our fingernails, we have clawed back up the cliff a little bit. Future restrictions or a sense that people should stay at home would be a disaster for us.’

It’s time to hit Theatreland once more. We have had a good look at what there is to book — and here is our pick of the crop.

Life Of Pi





Based on Yann Martel’s heart-wrenching novel, which won the Booker Prize in 2002, this play features breathtaking puppetry and state-of-the-art visuals – which comes into its own when you consider that the characters are a hyena, a zebra, an orangutan, a Royal Bengal tiger and a sixteen-year-old boy called Pi. The awesome production was a five-star hit when it premiered at Sheffield’s Crucible Theatre. The transfer to London was only a matter of time. Book tickets here.


Hamilton




Before Covid struck, Hamilton was the hottest ticket in town. The musical tale of Alexander Hamilton and the founding fathers, set to an astonishingly catchy hip-hop soundtrack, has been a raging success since it debuted off Broadway in 2015. If you didn’t see it pre-pandemic, that was either because you didn’t want to pay sky-high prices for a ticket – or because you couldn’t get one. Now is the time to rethink the situation. Book tickets here.


Moulin Rouge





With this, we bring you one is a heck of a treat. The award-winning stage show of Baz Luhrmann’s unforgettable 2001 film, starring Nicole Kidman and Euan McGregor, is transferring from the US to the Piccadilly Theatre – and we can’t wait. Expect the same tunes, riotous costumes and hilarious celebration of: truth, beauty, freedom and love. Book tickets here.


Cinderella




Photo Credit Tristram Kenton
The Guardian calls Andrew Lloyd Webber’s latest musical, Cinderella: ‘terrifically OTT’ and ‘a blast’. Isn’t that just exactly what we all need as we return to the theatre? With a book by Emerald Fennell, inspired costumes and David Zippel’s witty and memorable lyrics, this is a feel-good show for all the family. Fennell and Lloyd Webber wrote most of the show on Zoom during lockdown. She recalls: ‘With things in the world feeling so frightening and bleak, it was a relief to us all to work on something unashamedly joyful.’ See you in the stalls! Book tickets here.


Cabaret




You will have to move fast if you want tickets to this gem of a musical, starring Eddie Redmayne and Jessie Buckley. More than a simple retelling of the famous 1966 story, this is an experience. The producers say: ‘The Kit Kat Club has laid siege to the Playhouse Theatre. The performers have infiltrated the premises. The artists have staked their claim. Come early and explore every nook and cranny of what we have to offer. The show starts from the moment we welcome you through the doors of the club.’ Totally intrigued. Book tickets here.


Mary Poppins





When this award-winning musical extravaganza opened recently in the West End, director Richard Eyre said it elicited ‘an extraordinary appetite from the audience. It was like the Second Coming.’ Its cast and creative team, which includes producer Cameron Mackintosh and writer Julian Fellowes, have clearly sprinkled it with their own inimitable magic. Umbrellas at the ready. Book tickets here.


The Mirror And The Light




This is the long-awaited final part of Hilary Mantel’s Wolf Hall trilogy, adapted for the stage. Mantel wrote the script during lockdown, swapping notes over email with her co-writer Ben Miles. She recently told The Guardian: ‘It surprised me, when we did the first plays, how comfortable I was in a rehearsal room. That awful self-consciousness that beset me all my life just left me. On reflection, I’ve always known it: I’m devoted to the theatre… theatre is where I should have been, I think.’ Starring Miles as Thomas Cromwell and Nathanial Parker as Henry VIII, it promises so much that extra dates have been added to the run. Book tickets here.


Six




Henry VIII would surely love all the press he’s getting right now. This funky, flashing, feverish musical spectacular is not to be missed. A celebration of the Tudor monarch’s six wives, this timely and upbeat show, with its all-female cast and addictive score, is the very essence of Girl Power. Book tickets here.

By Becky Ladenburg
October 2021

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Becky Ladenburg

Features Editor

As the GWG's features editor, Becky has her discerning finger on the cultural pulse. She's also our go-to expert on the property market.

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