Top 10 London theatre openings this February
There's no better mood-lifter than spending an evening in the theatre discovering something new, be it a big Broadway transfer of a musical, or seeing a perfect play premiere. This February will have it all, and some perfect ways to rid yourself of the January blues once and for all.
Whether its major musicals opening like 9 to 5 or Come From Away, plays such as Ivo van Hove's latest stage adaptation, or another healthy dose of Harold Pinter, there's plenty to get stuck into this coming month.
All About Eve
Noel Coward Theatre
Ivo van Hove returns to London with the eagerly-anticipated stage adaptation of the classic film All About Eve. He's assembled a top-notch cast, with Gillian Anderson starring as Broadway legend Margo Channing who takes obsessed fan Eve Harington (played by Lily James), under her wing, unaware her act of kindness may come back to haunt her.
Come From Away
Another major Broadway musical makes the transatlantic trip over from Broadway as the brilliant Come From Away touches down in the West End. It tells the many stories that came out of the small town of Gander in Canada in the midst of the 9/11 attacks; the town's airport became the impromptu destination for the 9,000 passengers whose flights were diverted as air space was shut. With music and lyrics by Irene Sankoff and David Hein, this massively affecting musical weaves together the stories of strangers from across the world, and the result is one of the most original new musicals of the last few years.
9 to 5 the Musical
Dolly Parton's musical 9 to 5 opens in the West End, bringing some of the singer's biggest hits to the stage. Caroline Sheen, Amber Davies and Natalie McQueen star as three office workers seeking revenge on their piece-of-work boss Franklin Hart Jr, played by Brian Conley. Bonnie Langford also stars as Roz Keith, Hart's assistant. Featuring classic hits like "9 to 5", "Backwoods Barbie" and "Here for You", 9 to 5 could be the perfect feel-good musical to lift the January blues.
Pinter 7: The Dumb Waiter and A Slight Ache
Harold Pinter Theatre
The final production in the Pinter at the Pinter season is an absolute belter with the doubleheader of The Dumb Waiter and A Slight Ache. While the former will grab the headlines, with starring performances by Martin Freeman and Danny Dyer as two hitmen awaiting their next target, A Slight Ache will also exhibit huge acting talents in John Heffernan and Gemma Whelan. Given the high standard Jamie Lloyd's season has kept so far, we're expecting this final exciting production to deliver more theatrical delights.
Only Fools and Horses the Musical
Theatre Royal Drury Lane
There's a lot of talk in London about the lack of British musicals premiering in the West End. Well, they don't get much more British than this as classic BBC sitcom Only Fools and Horses gets the stage musical treatment, with a couple of new Cockney classics by Chas and Dave. Written by Jim Sullivan, son of the show's creator John Sullivan, and Paul Whitehouse, who also stars as Grandad, the musical will see Del Boy looking for love, Rodney preparing for his wedding with Cassandra, and Grandad taking stock on life so far. It's certainly a bit left-field for a musical, but we think it sounds lovely jubbly knees-up.
Home, I'm Darling
Duke of York's Theatre
Direct from the National Theatre, Katherine Parkinson stars in Laura Wade's new play as a housewife who is made redundant and decides to become a full-time housewife. Obsessed with the notion of an idealistic 1950s life, the play delves into how our view of gender roles in the home has changed, and how our lives change to keep up with the demands of society. Tamara Harvey's production is played out on Anna Fleischle's beautiful 50s set which is worth the trip alone.
She's tackled some of America's most popular television shows on stage at the Almeida in recent years with Mr Burns and The Twilight Zone, but now Anne Washburn turns her attention to a different television icon:
reality TV star President of the United States, Donald Trump. Shipwreck imagines what a meal with the leader of the free world might be like. It features a cracking cast, including Fisayo Akinade, Justine Mitchell and Adam James.
The American Clock
The Old Vic
There's a mini-Arthur Miller season playing out in the West End over the coming months, with David Suchet and Brendan Coyle starring in The Price at Wyndham's Theatre, and All My Sons following Rachel Chavkin's production of The American Clock at the Old Vic. Clare Burt, Clarke Peters and Paul Bentall star in the play about a family during the Great Depression in America, which will see three sets of actors rotate the central characters for each performance.
Berberian Sound Studio
Renowned sound designer Tom Scutt makes his directional debut at the Donmar this month with the premiere of Joel Horwood's take on the 2012 horror film Berberian Sound Studio. The play sees a British sound engineer arrive at a studio in Italy to begin work on what he believes is a documentary about horses, but is in fact an Italian thriller.
All In a Row
Alex Oates and Dominic Shaw reunite following their success with dark web drama Silk Road with a new play about the challenges of raising an autistic child. Inspired by Oates' own experiences as a carer, the play focuses on dreamers Tamora and Martin, and carer Gary as social services decide to intervene in the case. It stars Charlie Brookes, Simon Lipkin, Michael Fox with puppeteer Hugh Purves.
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