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Top 10 London Musicals
London's West End is well known for its musicals. From long running hit shows such as The Phantom of the Opera and Les Miserables which have been entertaining audiences for over 30 years to welcoming some of Broadway's most recent hits, London certainly is a place to enjoy an exciting musical production. With so much on offer from jukebox shows full of the hit songs from your favourite artists to musicals based on films and books, the West End provides audiences some of the best form of entertainment possible.
Our list of Top 10 London musicals is ranked by London Theatre's current top selling shows.
- Wicked at Apollo Victoria Theatre
- The Lion King at Lyceum Theatre
- Les Miserables at Queen's Theatre
- The Phantom of the Opera at Her Majesty's Theatre
- The Book of Mormon at Prince of Wales Theatre
- Disney's Aladdin at Prince Edward Theatre
- Matilda the Musical at Cambridge Theatre
- Mamma Mia at Novello Theatre
- Dreamgirls at Savoy Theatre
- School of Rock at New London Theatre
1. Wicked at the Apollo Victoria Theatre
Having played at the Apollo Victoria Theatre in the West End since September 2006 Wicked continues to be one of the world's most popular musicals and is a must see for any visitor to London. Based on the book by Gregory Maguire the musical takes a look over the rainbow to the magical world of Oz and examines everything that happened before Dorothy dropped in. Winner of over 90 international awards Wicked is the 16th longest-running West End musical of all time and celebrated its 10th Anniversary in the West End on 27 September 2016, having been seen by almost 6 million people. A fantastic score full of memorable hits including "Defying Gravity", Wicked tells a heart-warming story of friendship, love and acceptance and continues to resonate with audiences from all over the world.
Perfect for: Teenagers, Groups, Family, Special Occasions, Trips to London.
2. The Lion King at the Lyceum Theatre
Walt Disney's The Lion King continues to play to sold-out houses in London's West End after 17 years at the Lyceum Theatre. Based on the hit 1994 animated film of the same name The Lion King features all the songs from film by Elton John and Tim Rice, including "Can You Feel the Love Tonight", "Be Prepared" and "The Circle of Life". After opening on Broadway in 1997 the stage musical has now been seen throughout the world in numerous productions, each bringing the classic story to life in new and inspiring ways. Featuring award-winning puppetry and costume design by Julie Taymor, The Lion King redefines the meaning of magic on stage. As one of the most successful pieces of live entertainment ever created, audiences return year after year to be bowled over by this incredible and iconic musical.
Perfect for: Children (over 6 years old), Special Occasions, Trips to London, School Groups, First Time Theatregoers.
3. Les Miserables at the Queens Theatre
The West End's longest running musical Les Miserables shows no signs of slowing down. Originally opening at the Barbican Theatre in 1985 the show famously transferred to the West End where it defied the critics to become one of the most well-known musicals of all time. Since being adapted into a major Oscar-nominated film the stage musical has brought in new fans from all over the world who are attracted to the romantic story, wonderful stage designs and iconic score which includes the hits "On My Own", "I Dreamed a Dream", "At the End of the Day" and "Empty Chairs at Empty Tables". Having been revived all over the world, the original West End production of Les Miserables is the only place where you can experience the original production in all of its glory.
Perfect for: Teenagers, Date Nights, Anniversaries, Special Occasions, Film fans.
Second only to Les Mis is Andrew Lloyd Webber's mega-musical The Phantom of the Opera which continues to bring in audiences at the Her Majesty's Theatre over 30 years since it first opened. Based on the Gothic horror novel of the same name this sweepingly romantic musical went on to become one of the most successful pieces of live entertainment in history and continues to hold the record as Broadway's longest running musical of all time. With stunning set designs and visual effects the story of a mysterious opera ghost obsessed with a beautiful young Soprano unfolds against one of Lloyd Webber's most instantly recognisable scores, including the hit songs "All I Ask of You", "Think of Me", "Angel of Music" and of course, "The Phantom of the Opera". Fans from all over the world come to see the musical in London often returning again and again to relive one of the West End's most recognisable institutions.
Perfect for: Adults, Date Nights, Special Occasions, Trips to London, Book fans.
5. The Book of Mormon at the Prince of Wales Theatre
One of London's newer musicals The Book of Mormon exploded onto the West End stage, transferring to the Prince of Wales Theatre following a record breaking Tony Award-winning opening in New York. From the creators of South Park this musical comedy is frivolous, naughty and downright shocking and frequently leaves audiences rolling in the aisles with laughter. The Book of Mormon has gone on to become one of the West End's most popular shows despite only opening in 2012, but its tongue-in-cheek attitude and hilarious songs and music continue to keep it playing to sold out houses.
Perfect for: Young Adults, Adults, Dad, First Time Theatregoers, South Park and Comedy fans.
After only opening in the West End in 2016 Disney's Aladdin continues to make magic and delight fans of the original Disney film of the same name. A huge hit on Broadway the musical features all of your favourite songs from the film and includes some brand new music and characters. With a hugely talented cast of exceptional singers and dancers Aladdin is designed to grant all three of your musical theatre wishes in one. Expect brilliant special effects, a flying carpet and songs such as "A Whole New World" and you'll find yourself on a magic carpet ride back to your childhood.
Perfect for: Children, Young Adults, Families, Trips to London, Disney fans.
7. Matilda the Musical at the Cambridge Theatre
The RSC's musical production of Roald Dahl's much-loved novel opened in the West End in 2011 and has consistently been delighting audiences since. Opening around the world including a Tony-nominated production on Broadway, Matilda the Musical has gone on to win over 50 major international awards, including 12 for Best Musical. Featuring a smart and witty original score by Tim Minchin this musical adaptation is one of the most successful British musicals of modern times, and entertains audiences both old and young. Winner of seven Olivier Awards it features excellent direction, design and knock-out performances from a highly talented cast of adults and children.
Perfect for: Children, Young Adults, Families, Trips to London.
8. Mamma Mia! at the Novello Theatre
The West End's biggest party, Mamma Mia! is a show that you already know you're going to love. Featuring a string of ABBA songs this is one of the world's most successful musicals and continues to attract audiences time and again to relive the musical comedy story, fun songs and hilarious characters. Journey to a secluded Greek island and meet single mother Donna who is doing everything she can to throw a wedding for her daughter Sophie. When three possible dads surprise her it's anyone's guess who will end up walking down the aisle. Pull out your flares and get involved with the West End's most loved party musical.
Perfect for: Groups, Trips to London, Special Occasions, First Time Theatregoers
9. Dreamgirls at the Savoy Theatre
One of the West End's newest musicals is a Broadway classic. Some 35 years after originally opening in New York the London premiere opened to sold-out houses at the Savoy Theatre in December 2016. Having inspired a film adaptation starring Beyonce and Jennifer Hudson, Dreamgirls tells the story of a black girl-group in America throughout the 1960s and explores the racism and challenges faced in the music industry. With a pop-rock heavy score Dreamgirls boasts an impressive cast of theatre performers, currently led by Glee star Amber Riley who is consistently bringing down the house each evening with her delivery of songs such as "Listen", "One Night Only" and of course, "And I am Telling You (I'm Not Going)". Nominated for multiple Olivier Awards this is one brand new musical you won't want to miss.
Perfect for: Young Adults, Adults, Music Fans, Musical Theatre Fans, Special Occasions.
10. School of Rock at the New London Theatre
Andrew Lloyd Webber's latest musical has already proved to be a huge hit on Broadway and opened in the West End to a string of five star reviews. Based on the popular film of the same name starring Jack Black it follows a down-on-his-luck musician who tries to pass off a school teacher and ends up creating a rock band from his prep-school pupils. The main draw of the production remains the hugely talented cast which includes three teams of children who all play their own music and 'rock out' on stage each night. A fun and light-hearted new musical that's set to inspire children and young people and delight audiences of all ages.
Perfect for: Teenagers, Dad, Rock Music Fans, Families, Trips to London.
Keep up to date with all of the Top London Musicals by visiting our What's On London Theatre page.
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