Top 10 picks for 2018: The Birthday Party, Strictly Ballroom, Tina, Long Day’s Journey & more

In Features, London theatre, Musicals, Native, Opinion, Plays, Reviews, Sticky by Emma ClarendonLeave a Comment

With plenty of great shows coming to London in the new year, here’s Love London Love Culture’s top 10 favourites to book for now…. Click on links to BUY tickets in the Mates Ticket Shop. 

1, The Birthday Party, Harold Pinter Theatre: sixty years after the play’s premiere, Harold Pinter’s play is being revived in the West End from January 2018 for a limited season. The cast is set to include Toby Jones, Stephen Mangan, Zoë Wanamaker and Pearl Mackie.

Stanley Webber (Toby Jones) is the only lodger at Meg (Zoë Wanamaker) and Petey Boles’ (Peter Wight) sleepy seaside boarding house. The unsettling arrival of enigmatic strangers Goldberg (Stephen Mangan) and McCann (Tom Vaughan-Lawlor) disrupts the humdrum lives of the inhabitants and their friend Lulu (Pearl Mackie), and mundanity soon becomes menace when a seemingly innocent birthday party turns into a disturbing nightmare.   

2. Long Day’s Journey into Night, Wyndham’s Theatre: following a successful run at the Bristol Old Vic, Richard Eyre’s production of Eugene O’Neill’s play transfers to the Wyndham’s Theatre from the 27th January.

The Tyrones’ summer home, August 1912. Haunted by the past but unable to face the truth of the present, the Tyrones and their two sons test the bonds of a family caught in the cycle of love and resentment. As day turns to night and the family indulge in their vices, the truth unravels leaving behind a quartet of ruined lives.

3. Eugenius!, The Other Palace: after a successful concert performance at the London Palladium, this brand new musical will have a fully staged run at The Other Palace from the 22nd January.

4. Frozen, Theatre Royal Haymarket: Suranne Jones stars in this upcoming production of  Bryony Lavery’s award winning play directed by Jonathan Munby, at the theatre from the 9th February.

One sunny evening a young girl walks to visit her Grandma, she never arrives. A play about retribution, remorse and redemption, Frozen explores the interwoven lives of three strangers as they try to make sense of the unimaginable.

5. Pippin, Southwark Playhouse: Stephen Schwartz’s musical returns to London for the first time in five years, following a successful run at the Hope Mill Theatre, Jonathan O’Boyle’s production will play at the Southwark Playhouse from the 23rd February.

6. Strictly Ballroom, Piccadilly Theatre: transferring to the West End, Drew McOnie’s production is set to star  Zizi Strallen and Jonny Labey as and Fran and Scott, with Will Young taking up the bandleader role.

Strictly Ballroom tells the inspiring story of Scott Hastings, a championship ballroom dancer who defies all the rules and follows his heart, not only to find his true calling but also his true love.

7. Tina – The Tina Turner Musical, Aldwych Theatre:  this world premiere production is written by Olivier Award-winning playwright Katori Hall and directed by  Phyllida Lloyd. It will feature all of the singer’s greatest hits including “What’s Love Got To Do With It”, “River Deep – Moutain High” and “Proud Mary” .

From humble beginnings in Nutbush, Tennessee, to her transformation into the global Queen of Rock ‘n’ Roll, Tina Turner didn’t just break the rules, she rewrote them. This new stage musical reveals the untold story of a woman who dared to defy the bounds of her age, gender and race.

8. Chess, London Coliseum:  Tim Rice’s musical is heading back to the West End next year from the 26th April for its first major revival in 30 years. Including the songs ‘I Know Him So Well’ and ‘One Night In Bangkok’, this new revival is directed by Laurence Connor.

9. Peter Pan, Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre: opening the theatre’s new Summer season on the 17th May, Timothy Sheader and Liam Steel’s take on J.M. Barrie’s classic story returns to the Open Air Theatre filled with as much magic and puppetry as before.

10. The Lieutenant of Inishmore, Noel Coward Theatre: Michael Grandage will direct Poldark star Aidan Turner in this revival of Martin McDonagh’s satire on terrorism, heading to the Noel Coward Theatre from the 23rd June 2018.

Who knocked Mad Padraic’s cat over on a lonely road on the island of Inishmore and was it an accident? He’ll want to know when he gets back from a stint of torture and chip-shop bombing in Northern Ireland: he loves that cat more than life itself.

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Emma Clarendon
Emma Clarendon studied drama through A-Level before deciding she was much better suited to writing about theatre than appearing onstage. She’s written for a number of online publications ever since, including The News Hub and Art Info. Emma set up her own blog, Love London Love Culture, in April 2015 and tweets at LoveLDNLoveCul.
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Emma Clarendon on FacebookEmma Clarendon on InstagramEmma Clarendon on RssEmma Clarendon on Twitter
Emma Clarendon
Emma Clarendon studied drama through A-Level before deciding she was much better suited to writing about theatre than appearing onstage. She’s written for a number of online publications ever since, including The News Hub and Art Info. Emma set up her own blog, Love London Love Culture, in April 2015 and tweets at LoveLDNLoveCul.

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