Top 10 theatre openings in London this July
We can’t guarantee that London weather will always be in our side, but we can be certain that we’re in for a treat at the theatre this July. And even when golden hour ensures London sparkles in the sun, there’s cooler ways to spend an evening, like watching a West End show inside an air-conditioned theatre.
Sure, theatre may still be socially distanced, but July could be the final month of West End theatre without a full capacity audience forevermore. This July, there’s West End debuts from Sutton Foster and Emma Corrin, Andrew Lloyd Webber musicals are put firmly back on the map and there's magical moments a-plenty. Here’s our top 10 picks for London theatre in July.
We’ve been praying for theatre miracles for over a year, and now our theatre wishes have been granted as The Prince of Egypt reopens at the Dominion Theatre. The DreamWorks animation has been epically transformed for the stage, completed by 10 original songs by Wicked composer Stephen Schwartz.
Its original cast, including Liam Tamne, Luke Brady and Alexia Khadime return to a musical that we deemed as a “biblical pageant… with moments of spectacle.” The Prince of Egypt will reopen with socially distanced performances from 1 July - 4 September. After this, The Prince of Egypt will resume full capacity performances.
Dominion Theatre, from 1 July.
The aptness of a play called The Comeback coming back to the West End is not missed on us. After performances were cut short in December, The Pin’s debut play returns for three weeks at the Noel Coward Theatre. The comedy play sees up-and-coming-comics try to attract the attention of a Hollywood director, potentially changing their future careers.
In a 2020 review, “The Comeback for its part exists in the tradition of madcap West End entertainments… Words are repeatedly misunderstood (usually because they are taken too literally), props get tossed back and forth, and one pair of stand-ups gets mistaken for the other: a further test of credibility that the prevailing good will of the enterprise allows us to overlook.”
Noel Coward Theatre, from 7 July.
The West End production of Pretty Woman: The Musical now has a new home at the Savoy Theatre, welcoming audiences back to Rodeo Drive this July. Aimie Atkinson and Danny Mac reprise the roles of Vivian and Edward respectively in this romcom musical, with a book by Pretty Woman film creatives Garry Marshall and J. F. Lawton.
In a 2020 review, “What makes [Pretty Woman] ultimately both digestible and credible are the sympathetic performances of the two leads. [Director and choreographer] Jerry Mitchell, knows just how to make these transformations work. He ups the energy and momentum throughout.” There's great music too, including the famed Roy Orbison hit.
Savoy Theatre, from 8 July.
The Crown’s Golden Globe-winning Emma Corrin makes her stage debut in Joseph Charlton’s Anna X. It’s the final play in Sonia Friedman Productions RE:EMERGE season, with Corrin playing Anna, an influencer that has spent too much time constructing their desired identity.
Anna X is inspired by the actions of Anna Sorokin, a Russian-born woman who conned New Yorkers out of hundreds of thousands of dollars by pretending to be a German heiress. Thankfully, there’s no pretending here: Anna X is opening at the Harold Pinter Theatre in July.
Harold Pinter Theatre, from 10 July.
No, it’s not 1991. Original cast members Jason Donovan and Linzi Hateley will star in this summer’s revival of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, reunited on stage for the first time in 30 years. Jac Yarrow reprises his Olivier-nominated title role in the Andrew Lloyd Webber hit, donning the colourful coat once more in this Biblical musical.
Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat was due to begin previews from 1 July, but has been postponed to later in the month as a result of a positive contact with Covid. Rest assured though, Joseph’s dreams for a bright summer in the West End will still come true.
London Palladium, from 12 July.
Usually the home of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, the magic theme continues at the Palace Theatre with Wonderville Magic and Illusion. World-class artists come together for a thrilling production, sure to leave you speechless. So far, acts confirmed include The Illusionists’ Chris Cox and Josephine Lee, and Magic Circle Awards triple-winner Edward Hilsum. Get ready to step back in time for a vaudevillian journey of illusion, where anything can happen.
Palace Theatre, from 16 July.
After performances at Theatre Royal Bath, David Mamet’s Oleanna transfers to the Arts Theatre for a limited engagement this summer. Rosie Sheehy and Jonathan Slinger play a female student and college professor respectively, both caught up in a nightmare after she files a claim of sexual harassment. Directed by Lucy Bailey, Oleanna has been updated into a modern-day storyline that’s suitable for the #MeToo era.
Arts Theatre, from 21 July.
Sutton Foster reprises her Tony-winning turn as Reno Sweeney in the West End revival of Anything Goes. Even though it’s not all smooth sailing on board, get ready for a joyful evening on the S. S. American, complete with Cole Porter songs including “You’re The Top” and “Blow Gabriel Blow” and enough tap dancing to satisfy a lifetime.
Anything Goes features a whole host of acting veterans too, including Robert Lindsay, Gary Wilmot and Felicity Kendal making her stage debut. You’ll definitely get a kick out of seeing Anything Goes in London.
Barbican, from 23 July.
The Phantom isn’t just in our minds anymore, he’s back on stage. Even though The Phantom of the Opera set has been renovated, you can still expect the traditional Phantom fare. The chandelier. The boat scene. The phantom mask.
Lucy St. Louis will also make history as the first actress of colour to play Christine Daae in The Phantom of the Opera at Her Majesty’s Theatre. The Phantom of the Opera is set to a lush score including “Think Of Me” and “All I Ask Of You” and you can find out everything about The Phantom of the Opera here.
Her Majesty’s Theatre, from 27 July.
It’s not just the return of Jersey Boys that we’re looking forward to this summer. We can’t wait to step inside the Trafalgar Theatre, London’s newest theatre opening in July, and you can take a first look here. The Olivier Award-winning musical Jersey Boys dramatises Frankie Valli’s career as the Four Seasons’ leading vocalist, warts and all. The jukebox musical is jampacked with all the hits: “Sherry,” “Walk Like A Man” and “Who Loves You.” Don’t be “Beggin’” for theatre tickets this July.
Trafalgar Theatre, from 28 July.
Photo credit: The Comeback, Pretty Woman and Oleanna (Photos courtesy of The Comeback, Pretty Woman and Oleanna respectively)