The Best London Musicals To Watch Now
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The Best London Musicals To Watch Now

A guide to the West End

An evening of all-consuming singing and dancing at the theatre is just what the doctor ordered. Book a seat at one of London’s best musicals, from long-standing classics to shiny newbies.

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The Best Musicals in London 2023

Mrs. Doubtfire

Where? Shaftesbury Theatre (210 Shaftesbury Avenue, London, WC2H 8DP)

When? Monday–Saturday evenings, with matinee shows on Wednesdays and Saturdays. Currently booking until February 2024.

 

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Many of us will have fond memories of Robin Williams running around dressed as an old Scottish lady in the 1993 film Mrs. Doubtfire – so it was exciting news to hear that the award-winning story was making its way to the West End in 2023. The plot follows Daniel, an out-of-work actor who adopts the alter ego if Scottish nanny Euphegenia Doubtfire to stay in the lives of his kids after his recent divorce. But once Mrs Doubtfire comes to life, Daniel soon finds out how hard it can be to balance two different identities.

BOOK IT: mrsdoubtfiremusical.co.uk

Six The Musical

Where? Vaudeville Theatre (404 Strand, London, WC2R 0NH)

When? Tuesday–Sunday evenings, with matinee shows on Sundays and Thursdays. Currently booking until November 2024.

 

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This smash-hit musical has been crowned ‘the glory of the West End’ – and not just for its royal theme. Six tells the story of Henry VIII’s wives like never before, with Aragon, Boleyn, Seymour, Cleves, Howard and Parr retelling their stories of love, loss and their infamous shared ex. The show, which was created by Toby Marlow and Lucy Moss, is set to outrageous pop-rock music (and backed by the former queens’ all-female band, the Ladies in Waiting).

BOOK IT: sixthemusical.com

Grease The Musical

Where? Dominion Theatre (268-269 Tottenham Court Road, London W1T 7AQ)

When? Monday–Saturday evenings, with matinee shows on Thursdays and Saturdays. Currently booking until 28 October 2023.

Grease is coming back to the West End? Tell me more, tell me more! The hit stage production is back in London for a limited run this summer and autumn, with musical veterans Dan Partridge, Olivia Moore and Jocasta Almgill reprising their roles as Danny, Sandy and Rizzo while Louise Redknapp, Jason Donovan and Peter Andre take up supporting roles as Teen Angela and Vince Fontaine respectively. The storyline sees students return to Rydell High, where greaser Danny and girl-next-door Sandy are unexpectedly reunited after a dreamy summer romance – but will their relationship survive senior year in an American high school?

BOOK IT: greasemusical.co.uk

Moulin Rouge! The Musical

Where? Piccadilly Theatre (Denman Street, W1D 7DY)

When? Monday–Saturday evenings, with matinee shows on Wednesdays and Saturdays. Currently booking until February 2024.

Moulin Rouge the Musical

Ever since Baz Luhrmann’s pop musical debuted back in 2001, Moulin Rouge has been the musical for those dreaming of living la vie de bohème in Paris. The glitzy stage version never gets old. A riot of music, colour and opulence set in 19th century Paris, the show follows the love affair of writer Christian and courtesan Satine. A brilliant score features reworked pop hits including ‘Lady Marmalade’ and ‘Diamonds Are a Girl’s Best Friend’, plus the original song ‘Come What May’, which was written for the film.

BOOK IT: moulinrougemusical.co.uk 

Cabaret at the Kit Kat Club

Where? Playhouse Theatre (Northumberland Avenue, WC2N 5DE)

When? Monday–Saturday evenings, with matinee shows on Wednesdays and Saturdays. Currently booking until June 2024.

Cabaret

(Photo by Joel Palmer)

Having racked up seven Olivier Awards, this intimate revival of Cabaret is one of the West End’s hottest tickets. Set in Berlin on the cusp of the 1930s, the hit musical – which seats the audience on tables around the stage – charts the friendship between Sally and writer Cliff Bradshaw, with the plot revolving around a cabaret venue called the Kit Kat Club. In reality, we’re in the Playhouse Theatre, and you should make sure to arrive early to absorb tidbits of The Prologue around the bar and the rest of the building. Add stage-side dining and/or pre-drinks to your ticket to really enfold yourself in the Kit Kat Club.

BOOK IT: kitkat.club 

Matilda The Musical

Where? Cambridge Theatre (Earlham Street, London WC2H 9HU)

When? Tuesday–Saturday evenings, with matinee shows on Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays. Currently booking until 15 December 2024.

Matilda The Musical

Matilda The Musical

One for the kids (or the kids at heart), Matilda The Musical has made a big name for itself over the past few years, based on Roald Dahl’s popular children’s book, created by the Royal Shakespeare Company with lyrics by Tim Minchin. Having won seven Olivier awards in 2012, the musical received a film version at the end of 2022. If you’d like to experience the magic of the screen on stage, this is the one for you.

BOOK IT: uk.matildathemusical.com

The Book of Mormon

Where? Prince of Wales Theatre (Coventry Street, W1D 6AS)

When? Monday–Saturday evenings, with matinee shows on Fridays and Saturdays. Currently booking until January 2024.

Since it debuted at the Prince of Wales Theatre in 2013, The Book of Mormon has been delighting audiences with its witty, satirical humour. Created by Trey Parker and Matt Stone – the duo behind South Park – the show follows the journey of two Mormon missionaries who travel to Africa to promote their religion. It’s fun and light-hearted – but also thought-provoking, with a catchy soundtrack featuring fan favourites like ‘I Believe’ and ‘I Am Africa’.

BOOK IT: thebookofmormonmusical.com 

Tina – The Tina Turner Musical

Where? Aldwych Theatre (49 Aldwych, London WC2B 4DF)

When? Tuesday–Saturday evenings, with matinee shows on Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays. Currently booking until September 2024.

Tina Turner the Musical

This acclaimed production about the life of artist Tina Turner smashed Box Office records when it debuted in 2018. It returned to the Aldwych Theatre last year, with Aisha Jawando taking on the role of Tina alongside Jammy Kasongo as Ike.

BOOK IT: tinathemusical.com

Frozen The Musical

Where? Theatre Royal Drury Lane (Catherine Street, London WC2B 5JF)

When? Wednesday–Sunday evenings, with matinee performances on Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays. Currently booking until June 2024.

frozen

From Disney instant-classic to stage phenomenon, Frozen The Musical has been wow-ing audiences young and old since it debuted on the West End in September 2021. Perfect West End winter viewing.

BOOK IT: frozenthemusical.co.uk

Everybody’s Talking About Jamie

Where? Peacock Theatre (Portugal Street, London WC2A 2HT)

When? Returning for a limited run from 8 February to 24 March 2024.

Everybody's Talking About Jamie

Lively, funny and life-affirming, Everybody’s Talking About Jamie is returning for a limited run in 2024 (if you’re not London-based, catch the show on tour across the UK). It draws on the real-life story of Jamie Campbell, showcased on-screen in a 2011 documentary, a then-teenager living on a council estate in Sheffield who yearns to be accepted as a drag artist.

BOOK IT: everybodystalkingaboutjamie.co.uk

Wicked

Where? Apollo Victoria Theatre (17 Wilton Road, Pimlico, London SW1V 1LG)

When? Tuesday–Saturday evenings, with matinee shows on Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays. Currently booking until June 2024.

Wicked

Helen Woolf (Glinda) and Nikki Bentley (Elphaba). Photo by Matt Crockett.

Wicked is one of London’s longest running musicals of all time. No surprise to anyone who’s seen it: from the heart-warming story to its epic costumes and endlessly catchy songs, Wicked is a true masterpiece. Based on Gregory Maguire’s 1995 novel, Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West, the play re-imagines the Land of Oz, proposing an alternative universe to that of L. Frank Baum’s The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. At its core, Wicked is the story of a deep friendship between two young women: the ostracised green Elphaba – later known as the Wicked Witch of the West – and beloved blonde Glinda, the Good Witch of the North.

BOOK IT: wickedthemusical.co.uk

Hamilton

Where? Victoria Palace Theatre (79 Victoria Street, London SW1E 5EA)

When? Monday–Saturday evenings, with matinee shows on Thursdays and Saturdays. Currently booking until March 2024.

Cast of Hamilton onstage

Reuben Joseph as Hamilton, Waylon Jacobs, Jake Halsey-Jones and Emile Ruddock and Company. Photo by Danny Kaan

If you haven’t seen Hamilton yet, where have you been? Lin-Manuel Miranda’s jewel of a hip-hop musical about America’s founding father Alexander Hamilton has garnered rave reviews worldwide – and the hype is going nowhere.

BOOK IT: hamiltonmusical.com

Les Misérables

Where? Sondheim Theatre (51 Shaftesbury Avenue, London W1D 6BA)

When? Monday and Wednesday–Saturday evenings, with matinee performances on Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays. Currently booking until March 2024.

Les Mis logo

The world’s longest running musical, Les Mis has returned to the refurbished and renamed Sondheim Theatre (formerly the Queen’s) for a limited season. Set in 19th century France, the musical dramatises Victor Hugo’s 1862 novel about ex-convict Jean Valjean, who is hunted for decades by the policeman Javert.

BOOK IT: lesmis.com

The Lion King

Where? Lyceum Theatre (21 Wellington Street, London WC2E 7RQ)

When? Tuesday–Saturday evenings, with matinee performances on Wednesdays and Saturdays. Currently booking until February 2024.

Disney's The Lion King

This one needs no introduction. The theatrical version of Disney classic The Lion King returns to its London home for more than two decades this July, where it has been enjoyed by over 16 million people. Londoner Kayi Ushe takes on the role of Simba in his journey from wide-eyed cub to King of the Pridelands – a great one to see with the kids.

BOOK IT: thelionking.co.uk

Main image: Tina – The Tina Turner Musical, Manuel Harlan