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London Theatre Reviews

Planning a theatre trip and not sure whether to splurge on the star power and spectacle of a West End musical, experience an intimate drama in a Fringe venue, or check out the latest in new writing at the Royal Court?

See what our reviewers thought about all the latest London theatre offerings with our full theatre reviews listings! From classic dramas to new musicals, our editorial team have written about what they loved and what they didn’t. View our London Theatre Guide reviews below.

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  • Photo credit: Dawn Hope, David Thaxton, Mary Moore, Marc Pickering,, Yazdan Qafouri and Nicola Blackman in The Sorcerer's Apprentice (Photo by Geraint Lewis)

    "Magic, the means to impress the people around you" is continually sung by the title character in The Sorcerer's Apprentice, and it's easy to see why. Inspired by J. W. Goethe's fantastical 18th century poem, which subsequently influenced Dukas's orchestral piece, The Sorcerer's Apprentice sees Eva, a sorcerer's daughter, use her newly discovered powers to impress others and change the world.Due to have had its premiere at Southwark Playhouse earlier this year, the production is now taking place...

  • Richard Holt in Sherlock Holmes, The Case of the Hung Parliament

    Things aren't going too well in Britain's political higher political echelons: the Home Secretary, Foreign Secretary, and Lord Chamberlain have all been found hanged and unless decisive action is taken fast, the Prime Minister will be next to go - and on his birthday, no less. What to do? If you're Dr Watson, it's time to call in a Zoom room full of amateur sleuths, who are then tasked with deciding which of a handful of suspects may be the murderer. It's a race against time, but one that at...

  • Adrian Lester and Danny Sapani in Hymn (Photo by Marc Brenner)

    From live to livestream: that's the unexpected path charted over time by the new two-hander Hymn, which pairs the playwright Lolita Chakrabarti with her husband, actor Adrian Lester, nine years after their collaboration on Red Velvet took them to the West End and New York. Conceived specifically for the constraints of the pandemic, the original intention here was for a modestly conceived piece that could be performed before a socially distanced audience at this important Off West End venue....

  • T'Shan Williams and Carly Mercedes Dyer in The Color Purple (Photo by Pamela Raith)

    The Color Purple has been one of my lifelines in the last year. The inspiring message of discovering your own power to make it through hard times feels relatable and helpful during these seemingly endless days of lockdown. The experience of seeing the show, which features a rousing, gospel-infused score from Brenda Russell, Allee Willis, and Stephen Bray, in the theatre can feel akin to going to church. When I saw the original Broadway production on tour and the stripped down John Doyle-directed...

  • Janie Dee in 'All On Her Own' (Photo by Danny Kaan)

    Solo plays are everywhere these days and why not? Made to order for the constraints and restrictions of our time, the resurgence of the monologue has given rise to entertainments as varied as last year's reboot of Alan Bennett's Talking Heads, seen first on TV and then onstage at the Bridge Theatre, all the way to Clint Dyer and Roy Williams's Death of England: Delroy, in which a single performer, Michael Balogun, brought the National's largest stage to teeming, vibrant life. So it's not too...

  • Emily Redpath and Sam Tutty in 'Romeo and Juliet' (Photo by Ryan Metcalfe)

    This gets an A for effort, I suppose. It can't be easy during the pandemic working on Shakespeare given the size and scope of his plays, both of which run counter to the demands of social distancing and other dictates of our infectious times. All credit, therefore, to Metcalfe Gordon Productions for even daring to mount a new Romeo and Juliet available for streaming in this climate: a project put together in two weeks that by necessity required the cast to film their parts individually so as to...

  • Lawrence Hodgson-Mullings in Dick Whittington at the National Theatre (Photo by The Other Richard)

    The National Theatre regularly trawls the world repertoire but has only infrequently dipped a raucous toe into arguably this country's best-loved theatrical institution, the Christmas pantomime, or panto. I dimly recall a Cinderella at this address in 1983, when I had only just moved to the UK, and Christmas 2020 saw only the first panto since then - a busy, bustling, openhearted version of Dick Whittington that closed before opening night (so what else is new in these Covid-ridden days) but...

  • A Christmas Carol at the Old Vic (photo by Manuel Harlan)

    A lot has changed between 1843 and 2020, but when it comes to A Christmas Carol, not much feels different, especially this year. Although the Charles Dickens classic has been on stages across the world for holidays seasons for years, this year not excepted, something rings a little closer to home with the classic tale, particularly in Jack Thorne's adaptation, produced here as part of the Old Vic's virtual In Camera series. Ebenezer Scrooge is a bit like Covid-19 to start, in that his...

  • Ben Ashenden and Alex Owen in 'The Comeback.' (Photo by Marc Brenner)

    The Comeback? More like The Shutdown, if Tuesday night's performance this week was any gauge, given that London theatreland went dark yet again as of the next morning. That decision was in accordance with tier 3 restrictions prohibiting people from gathering in playhouses, even though the "sold out" sign in front of the Noel Coward Theatre was met, upon entry into the auditorium, with plenty of deliberately empty seats in accordance with COVID-era protocol pertaining to social distancing and the...

  • Flight (Photo by Mihaila Bodlovic)

    This really is a small wonder. Created by Scottish company Vox Motus and first seen three years ago, it's the story of two orphaned brothers, Aryan and Kabir, who flee their home in Afghanistan to make a new life in London. It's based on the novel Hinterland, by Caroline Brothers - but this, co-presented here by the Bridge and the Barbican, is no ordinary literary adaptation. Instead, its perilous odyssey unfolds in exquisitely detailed model boxes, arranged as a revolving diorama. Each audience...

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