London's Summer Theatre 2013

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The Shed, National Theatre

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The Shed, National Theatre
Mission Drift at The Shed, National Theatre
Shakespeare's Globe Theatre
Open Air Theatre, Regent's Park
To Kill a Mockingbird, Open Air Theatre, Regent's Park
Dinosaur Zoo, Open Air Theatre, Regent's Park
Merrily We Roll Along, Harold Pinter Theatre
The Book of Mormon
The Cripple of Inishmaan, Noel Coward Theatre
Indian Tempest, Shakespeare's Globe Theatre
Indian Tempest, Shakespeare's Globe Theatre
A Doll's House, Duke of York's Theatre
Lenny Henry in Fences at the Duchess Theatre
John Simm, Simon Russell Beale and Harry Melling in The Hothouse at Trafalgar Studios
The Scoop at More London Free Festival
Chimerica, Harold Pinter Theatre
Chimerica, Harold Pinter Theatre
Sweet Bird of Youth, Old Vic Theatre
The Same Deep Water As Me | The Donmar Warehouse
Private Lives | Gielgud Theatre


Helen Mirren, Simon Russell Beale and Daniel Radcliffe are just some of the A-list stars appearing on the London stage in summer 2013. Head to Shakespeare's Globe and Regent's Park Open Air Theatre for atmospheric al fresco acting.

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National Theatre

South Bank, South Bank, London, SE1 9PX

Tube: Temple Station , Waterloo Station


A critically acclaimed production of Othello, directed by Nicholas Hytner and starring Adrian Lester, plays out at the Olivier Theatre at the National as part of the venerated theatre's 50th anniversary season. Also on at the National this summer are The Amen Corner directed by Rufus Norris which tells the story of an uncompromising female pastor who finds that her congregation are turning against her, and Strange Interlude Eugene O'Neill's sweeping First World War drama in which Anne-Marie Duff stars.

Over at the National's exciting new temporary space, The Shed, is Mission Drift, a musical tale created by the New York ensemble The Team. There follows a new version of Romeo and Juliet for young audiences aged 8 years and over, The Grandfathers presented by the Bristol Old Vic Young Company, and The Hush which is part-gig, part-play and part-installation. The final show of the summer at The Shed, Home, tells the stories of the young Londoners through a mix of beatboxing and R&B and runs from 7th August right through to the end of the summer, ending on 7th September.


Shakespeare's Globe Theatre

A replica of Shakespeare's open-roof, wood-and-thatch Globe Playhouse.

21 New Globe Walk, Bankside, Bankside, London, SE1 9DT

Tube: Mansion House Station


A hotly anticipated production of 'Indian Tempest' by the French theatre company Footsbarn, from 29th July to 3rd August 2013, is sure to be a highlight of Shakespeare's Globe's 2013 summer season. Performed in a replica of Shakespeare's 16th century theatre, catching a play at Shakespeare's Globe Theatre has become a much love tradition of spending summer in London and the 2013 programmer doesn't disappoint. There's a mix of Shakespearean classics from the romance of A Midsummer Night's Dream to the comedy of The Taming of the Shrew, starring an all-female cast. There's the great tragedy, Macbeth, and all three of the history plays of Henry VI.

In a first for the Globe, acclaimed English trumpet soloist Alison Balsom stars in Gabriel playing music by Purcell and Handel using the natural (valveless) trumpet which was the supreme musical instrument of the Restoration.

Added to these are plays celebrating new writing including Blue Stockings and The Lightning Child which continue on through to the autumnal months. September also sees the return of the Belarus Free Theatre with its performance of King Lear which was first seen here in 2012 as part of the ambitious Globe to Globe project. The theatre company - which is banned from performing in its home country - premieres its first English language production, Trash Cuisine, at The Young Vic this summer.


Open Air Theatre, Regent's Park

The oldest fully professional, permanent outdoor theatre in Britain.

Inner Circle, Regent's Park, Regent's Park, London, NW1 4NR

Tube: Regent's Park Station


If stuffy auditoriums aren't your thing, the Open Air Theatre in the heart of Regent's Park offers a chance to enjoy quality theatre under a star-lit sky and in 2013 the season begins with Harper Lee's To Kill a Mockingbird. Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice is adapted for the stage by Simon Reade in the year the well loved romantic comedy celebrates its 200th anniversary. Filling the open air of Regent's Park with The Sound of Music, Rodger and Hammerstein's classic musical will provide the conclusion to this year's Open Air Theatre season. Continuing with their Shakespeare productions aimed at younger audiences, 'The Winter's Tale' is reimagined for everyone aged six and over. Also for young people aged three and above, the Dinosaur Zoo presents a live show of prehistoric creatures and gives audiences the chance to get up close and personal with the dino stars on the picnic lawn after the show.


London's Best Summer Musicals


The best musicals this month include Merrily We Roll Along which has transferred from the Menier Chocolate Factory to the Harold Pinter Theatre in London's West End for a 12 week limited season. While The Book of Mormon has been a hugely successful transfer from Broadway to the West End, The Royal Shakespeare Company's Matilda the Musical recently reversed that cultural exchange and has replicated its success in London on Broadway. Another Roald Dahl story which has undergone a musical makeover is Charlie and the Chocolate Factory which comes to the West End under the directorship of Sam Mendes and is sure to be a sweet success, continues at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane throughout the summer.


Sweet Bird of Youth, Old Vic Theatre

Sweet Bird of Youth is directed by Marianne Elliott and stars Kim Cattrall.

103 The Cut, South Bank, London, SE1 8NB

Tube: Waterloo Station , Southwark Station, Lambeth North Station


The director of the Old Vic's summer play Sweet Bird of Youth, Marianne Elliott, recently won an Olivier Award for Best Director for The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time at the National Theatre. And if that wasn't reason enough to see her latest play, the fact that Sex And The City actress Kim Cattrall stars in the title role might just convince you. Cattrall takes on the role of fading Hollywood legend Alexandra Del Lago in Tennessee Williams's novel in a production which forms part of Kevin Spacey's final season at the helm of the theatre. Cattrall has already proved her mettle on stage, last appearing in the West End in 2010 in Noel Coward's Private Lives, a production that subsequently transferred to Broadway. Charles Spencer, writing in The Telegraph, was reminded of, "the kind of woman Marilyn Monroe might have become had she lived a little longer...".


Private Lives | Gielgud Theatre

Anna Chancellor and Toby Stephens are the divorced couple in Noel Coward's comedy.

Shaftesbury Avenue, Soho, London, W1D 6AR

Tube: Piccadilly Circus Station , Leicester Square Station


Following on from The Audience at the Gielgud Theatre this summer is a West End transfer for Chichester Festival Theatre of Private Lives starring Anna Chancellor and Toby Stephens. Noel Coward's comedy drama about a divorced couple who meet unexpectedly five years later has already been praised for its "wonderfully fresh, stylish and razor-sharp account" by The Independent who proclaimed it to be "the best Private Lives we have seen since Alan Rickman and Lindsay Duncan struck sparks off each other in the West End a decade ago". Book now.


Events at Gielgud Theatre

To Kill A Mockingbird

10th March to 13th August 2022 - Various Times | £27.50-£77.50, Premium Seats £97.50-£152.50, rescheduled from May 21-Oct 31, original tickets remain valid

To Kill A Mockingbird Gielgud Theatre 2022-03-102022-08-13 Where:
Gielgud Theatre, Shaftesbury Avenue London, W1D 6AR
Category: Theatres
All events at Private Lives | Gielgud Theatre

The Cripple of Inishmaan, Noel Coward Theatre

St Martin's Lane, Covent Garden, London, WC2N 4AU

Tube: Leicester Square Station , Covent Garden Station, Charing Cross Station, Piccadilly Circus Station


This summer, Martin McDonagh's 'The Cripple of Inishmaan' is given its first major London revival since its premiere in 1996. Part of Michael Grandage's Noel Coward season - a season of five plays with over 100,000 tickets at 10 - the revival of this dark comedy will see Daniel Radcliffe take the lead role. If you want to see 'The Cripple of Inishmaan' at the Noel Coward Theatre this summer you can book tickets now . 'Cripple' Billy Claven is eager to broaden his horizons and escape the gossip, poverty and boredom of the small isle Inishmaan. After learning that a Hollywood film crew will be setting up camp on the neighbouring isle to create a documentary about life on the islands, Billy takes a chance and strives for a part in the film. Surprisingly, he succeeds and sets out to prove to everyone how much he wants to realise his dream.


A Doll's House, Duke of York's Theatre

St Martins Lane, Covent Garden, London, WC2N 4BG

Tube: Leicester Square Station , Charing Cross Station, Covent Garden Station, Piccadilly Circus Station, Embankment Underground Station


Zoe Wanamaker (best known for the BBC's My Family and her role as Madame Hooch in the Harry Potter series) stars in David Leveaux's well received production of Passion Play, the celebrated dark comedy on love and infidelity by Peter Nichols. Find the best ticket priced tickets and book now to see this " beautifully judged production which does full justice to an ingenious modern classic" (Charles Spencer, The Telegraph).

Also at the Duke of York's this summer comes A Doll's House, which transfers to the Duke of York's Theatre in August following two successful runs at The Young Vic. The sell-out success from Simon Stephens - who also worked on the multi Olivier Award-winning A Curious Incident of a Dog in the Night Time - was widely praised, "warmly recommended" (The Telegraph) and nominated for three Evening Standard Awards back in 2012 and enjoyed another successful run earlier this year. Now, the "sexy, passionate interpretation" (Evening Standard) of Henrik Ibsen's 1879 play comes to the West End for a limited 12-week run. Controversial at the time, A Doll's House is acutely critical of 19th century marriage norms but, despite contrary beliefs, Ibsen insisted the play was not a fight for women's rights. This revival will see Hattie Morahan and Dominic Rowan return as the title roles Nora and Torvald.


Chimerica | Harold Pinter Theatre

Lucy Kirkwood's Chimerica transfers to the West End on 6th August.

Harold Pinter Theatre, 6 Panton Street, Soho, London, SW1Y 4DN

Tube: Piccadilly Circus Station , Leicester Square Station


Dates: 06th August - 19th October 2013


Following a successful run at the Almeida Theatre where Lucy Kirkwood's Chimerica was given its world premiere on 20th May 2013, the play transfers to the Harold Pinter Theatre for a limited 11-week run. Twenty three years after Tiananmen Square, Joe, a young American photojournalist, is driven to discover the truth behind the unknown hero he captured on film in 1989. This provocative piece, which examines the changing fortunes of the two countries, is directed by Lyndsey Turner ('Posh' at the Royal Court and the West End). The play has been acclaimed by critics and audiences alike. "If we see a better new play this year, we'll be extremely lucky", says Michael Billington in The Guardian while Telegraph critic Charles Spencer "cannot rate it highly enough".


Fences | Duchess Theatre

Lenny Henry stars in this "cracking production" of August Wilson's American drama.

Duchess Theatre, Catherine Street, Covent Garden, London, WC2B 5LA

Tube: Covent Garden Station , Temple Station


Dates: 19th June - 14th September 2013


Comedian Lenny Henry proved he can do serious acting as well as he can do stand-up with Othello in 2009 and now he's back in Fences, a "cracking production" (Telegraph) of August Wilson's American drama. In the 1983 play set in the 1950s, Henry stars as African American Troy Maxson, an embittered bin man in his 50s, whose career in baseball was cut short by race laws, a role previously undertaken by the likes of Denzel Washington and James Earl Jones. Fences tours the UK before opening in London's West End in June at the Duchess Theatre. Ticket deals for Fences are available now. Reviews of Paulette Randall's "excellent production" at Theatre Royal Bath have claimed Lenny Henry as "magnificent", capable of delivering "moments of wrenching intensity", (Charles Spencer, Telegraph).


The Hothouse | Trafalgar Studios

Simon Russell Beale and John Simm star in Harold Pinter's tragi-comedy.

Trafalgar Studios, 14 Whitehall, Westminster, London, SW1A 2DY

Tube: Charing Cross Station , Embankment Underground Station


Dates: 04th May - 03rd August 2013


Simon Russell Beale and John Simm (currently appearing in BBC TV series The Village) star in Harold Pinter's tragi-comedy The Hothouse, Jamie Lloyd's second production at Trafalgar Studios following the hugely successful debut of his Trafalgar Transformed season, which opened with James McAvoy starring in Macbeth. Set during Christmas day in a state-run mental institution, the play reveals the cruelty handed out by its leader whose power goes unchecked. Get tickets for The Hothouse now, ends 3rd August.


The Scoop at More London Free Festival

Free al fresco theatre performed in the amphitheatre next to City Hall.

The Scoop at More London, The Queen's Walk, Bridge City, Bankside, London, SE1 2DB

Tube: London Bridge Station


Dates: 01st June - 31st October 2016


The Scoop at More London, next to City Hall, is a huge open air amphitheatre next to the Thames, making it an ideal al fresco venue for a Free Festival of music, theatre, film and fringe performances. Running throughout the summer, the 2013 festival includes The Pantaloons performing Sherlock Holmes (evenings from 12th to 14th June 2013), The Magic Flute presented by Merry Opera (from 26th to 28th June 2013), the Prince of Thebes and Oedipus and Antigone both of which are performed Wednesday to Sunday evenings from 7th August until 1st September 2013. This is what al fresco summer entertainment should be about: no tickets necessary - so you can just turn up and enjoy the show, outdoors. What better way to make the most of summer - and it's all for free.


The Same Deep Water As Me | The Donmar Warehouse

Nick Payne's new comic drama about personal injury lawyers opens 1st August.

41 Earlham Street, Seven Dials, Covent Garden, London, WC2H 9LD

Tube: Covent Garden Station , Leicester Square Station, Tottenham Court Road Station


A new play from 'Constellations' author Nick Payne - the play which won last year's Evening Standard Award - The Same Deep Water As Me opens at the Donmar this August. In this comic drama about Luton's finest personal injury lawyers we meet Andrew and Barry at Scorpion Claims and a collection of characters who are doing something wrong but who create a whole ideology to justify their actions. The shady world of 'no win, no fee' litigation is revealed in this witty new play which John Crowley returns to the Donmar to direct. The Irishman has previously directed 'Into the Woods', 'Juno and the Paycock' and 'Tales from Hollywood' at the Covent Garden theatre.

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