Top 10 London Theatre Shows and Where to Watch Them

London is famed for its marvellous shows and a trip to the British capital would be incomplete without seeing at least one of them.

Along with the world renowned West End musicals, there are theatrical plays, side-splitting comedy shows as well as outstanding opera and ballets that are not to be missed.

There are discounts available for those who wish to book London theatre tickets online and you will save a great deal of money by doing so.

So without further ado, here are ten of the best London shows...

1. The Lion King

Watch the award-winning adaptation of Disney's The Lion King at the Lyceum Theatre, you will be wowed with the astonishing special effects and wonderful costumes. Alongside music by Elton John, the evocative rhythms of Africa set the atmosphere of the Serengeti Plains, both of which are bound to amaze and mesmerise spectators of all ages.

  

2. Aladdin

Go for an unforgettable trip to the Prince Edward Theatre to see another Disney favourite, the musical extravaganze; Aladdin, which will take you on a magical carpet ride to the mystical world of Agrabah, a whole new world where dreams and wishes come true.

3. Les Misérables

Cameron Mackintosh’s celebrated production of Boublil and Schönberg's Les Misérables can be seen at the Queen's Theatre. The sensational show has been watched by over 70 million people in 22 different languages and in more than 40 different countries worldwide, and it is still going strong!

4. Matilda the Musical

Another London show that is popular with younger viewers, The Royal Shakespeare Company's production of Matilda, the Musical has won multiple awards and can be watched at London's Cambridge Theatre. It is a celebration of over 100 years since the birth of Roald Dahl, the dearly loved children's author.

5. Mamma Mia!

Mamma Mia, the Musical has been watched by more than 10 million people and you can see it too, live at the Novello Theatre in London. This is the ultimate feel-good show which is a definite must-see for anyone who loves music by ABBA. Mamma Mia! Here I go again!

6. Thriller

The London West End show Thriller is live at the Lyric Theatre. This outstanding musical tribute celebrates the life of the King of Pop, Michael Jackson and his brothers in the Jackson 5. Get ready for standing ovations and two hours of non-stop hit music that will take your breath away.

7. Wicked

Don’t miss the award winning musical Wicked at the Apollo Victoria. The show is based on the Gregory Maguire novel, which unfolds the untold story of the Witches of Oz and how they got their names.

8. The Phantom of the Opera

Andrew Lloyd Webber's epic musical, The Phantom of the Opera, is a long-running London show with spectacular special effects at Her Majesty's Theatre. The Phantom of the Opera is another definite must-see for all eager theatre goers.

9. 42nd Street

Mark Bramble’s production of 42nd Street will most definitely dazzle its audience with a glitzy cast and a ritzy blast of good old Broadway glam at the West End’s Theatre Royal, Drury Lane.

10. Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

Based on an original new story by J.K. Rowling, watch the world famous wizard; Harry Potter embark on a new escapade in a West End show by playwright Jack Thorne. Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Part One and Part Two have been highly anticipated at the Palace Theatre in London.

Top 20 London Theatres

There are over 230 theatres in London, the largest being the Royal Albert Hall which has seating for over 5000 people. It could be argued that it is more of a concert hall than a theatre but with it being the venue for performances by the Cirque du Soleil, the English National Ballet and not forgetting the Royal Variety Performance, it has definitely earned the heavyweight title of being the largest theatre in London.

To narrow down your choice of which ones to see first, we have compiled a list of twenty of the best London theatres that are definitely worth a visit.

1. Royal Opera House

With origins that date back as far as 1732, The Royal Opera House is an influential performing arts venue in Covent Garden and home to The Royal Opera, as well as The Royal Ballet, and the Orchestra of the Royal Opera House.

2. Shakespeare's Globe

Take a journey back in time at Shakespeare's Globe, a reconstruction of the open-air Elizabethan playhouse in Bankside where many of Shakespeare's plays were once performed. The original theatre was built in 1599 and accommodated up to 3000 people. Now with modern safety measures, the reconstructed site now seats 1400 viewers. Read some fun facts on Shakespeare's Globe Theatre.

3. National Theatre

There are three individual auditoriums within the National Theatre on London's South Bank. They are the Olivier Theatre, the Dorfman Theatre and the Lyttleton Theatre. The theatre offers an assortment of new and old shows, from Shakespeare to newer works by modern-day playwrights.

4. Lyceum Theatre

The Lyceum, with over 2000 seats is a West End theatre located in the City of Westminster, on Wellington Street, just off the Strand. With origins that date as far back as 1765, the theatre was the venue for an assortment of entertainments including a circus.

5. The Young Vic

The Young Vic on the Cut, located near the South Bank is one of London’s most influential theatres with a global reputation for staging ground-breaking, bold and compelling dramas that often attract a younger audience.

6. The Old Vic

One of London’s most historical theatres, the Old Vic theatrein Waterloo opened in 1818 and was the first home of the National Theatre. The acclaimed site has set the stage for many of the world’s most celebrated performers, including Peter O’Toole and Daniel Radcliffe.

7. Her Majesty's Theatre

Originating from 1705, Her Majesty’s Theatrehas hosted many awarding winning musicals including West Side Story and The Phantom of The Opera to name a few. Just a stone’s throw away from Trafalgar Square, Piccadilly Circus and St James’s Park, theatre goers take in the great atmosphere of the city as wells as the one behind the theatre doors.

8. Queen's Theatre

Opened in 1907, the Queen’s Theatre in Shaftesbury Avenue on the corner of Wardour Street is a performing arts theatre which has an ornate auditorium and is the London home of Les Misérables.

9. Prince of Wales Theatre

Along with the Queen’s Theatre and the Prince Edward Threatre, the Prince of Wales Theatre which was established in 1884 is now part of Delfont Mackintosh Theatres, one of the largest London theatre owners. It is located in Coventry Street, near Leicester Square.

10. Prince Edward Theatre

The Prince Edward Theatreis a West End theatre which opened in 1930 and is situated on Old Compton Street, just north of Leicester Square.

11. Apollo Victoria

The Apollo Victoria Theatre in London which also opened in 1930 is the venue for the hit musical Wicked. This impressive site has a seating capacity for over 2,300 people and is conveniently located right next to Victoria Station.

12. London Coliseum

The London Coliseum opened in 1904 and is the home to the English National Opera in St Martin’s Lane, central London, as well as being the host to the English National Ballet and other visiting companies. It is one of the largest theatres in London.

13. Adelphi Theatre

The Adelphi Theatre on the Strand is an eye-catching Art Deco building which dates back to 1930. The theatre was restored to its original grandeur in 1993.

14. Lyric Theatre

The 19th century Lyric Theatreopened in 1888 and is located on Shaftesbury Avenue in London's West End. It is also home to the record breaking Thriller Live!

15. New London Theatre

The New London Theatre has over 1000 seats and it is home to the famous musical Cats by Andrew Lloyd Webber. Based near Covent Garden, the theatre is a only a small walk from the famous market, piazza and the Royal Opera House.

 

16. Sadler's Wells Theatre

With a seating capacity for over one and a half thousand spectators, the Sadler's Wells theatre site in Islington dates back all the way to 1683. It is now a world famous dance venue, hosting a diversity of prominent international and British dance shows, including all forms of dance such as contemporary, ballet, tap dance, flamenco and Bollywood.

17. Barbican Centre

The Barbican Centre houses a concert hall, two art galleries, two theatres, three cinemas, a library, as well as restaurants, shops and a conservatory, making it the largest performing arts centre in the whole of Europe. It is also where the London Symphony Orchestra is based, and hosts an exhilarating intercontinental array of shows, conferences and festivals.

18. Regent's Park Open Air Theatre

The Regent's Park Open Air Theatre which opened in 1932 seats 1200 viewers in its delightful open air auditorium in the warmer months. This cultural hub in the heart of a Royal Park hosts some of the best musicals in London.

19. Unicorn Theatre

Dedicated to younger audiences, the Unicorn Theatre in London Bridge presents a stimulating line up of first-rate shows, focused at introducing young people to the enchantment and delight of theatre.

20. The Roundhouse

The Roundhouse was originally built in 1847 for a railway turntable. It is now one of North London’s most well known music and theatre venues, hosting an international variety of events.

For more information on what's happening in the theatres of London, check out the fromtheboxoffice theatre blog which contains features and interviews as well as information on buying tickets and where to find cheap tickets for West End shows, comedies and musicals.

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