Summer Theatre in London

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Jesus Christ Superstar

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Jesus Christ Superstar
Tristan & Yseult
The Wind in the Willows
A Tale Of Two Cities
Much Ado About Nothing
Oliver Twist
Boudica
 

 

London's stages play host to award-winning theatre shows all year round but the warmer months bring another realm of opportunities, with the streets and the parks becoming the stage. Read on to discover the best al fresco theatre in London this summer.

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The Kite Runner

Matthew Spangler's adaptation transfers to the Playhouse Theatre.

Playhouse Theatre, Northumberland Avenue, London, WC2N 5DE

Tube: Embankment Underground Station , Charing Cross Station

 

Dates: 8th June to 26th August 2017

 

Adapted by Matthew Spangler from the best-selling novel by Khaled Hosseini, The Kite Runner charts the heartrending story of friends Amir and Hassan, whose childhood innocence is tainted forever by an incident during a kite-flying tournament. Directed by Giles Croft, this adaptation transfers from the Wyndham's Theatre to the Playhouse Theatre stars former Casualty actor Ben Turner as the central character, Amir. Hosseini told the Evening Standard, the stage version is 'very different' to the film: "What is appealing is it lets you put a lot more of the book and text on the stage."

 
 
 

Tristan & Yseult

The internationally acclaimed production is revived this summer.

Shakespeare's Globe Theatre, 21 New Globe Walk, Bankside, London, SE1 9DT

Tube: Mansion House Station

 

Dates: 13th - 24th June 2017

 

Kneehigh Theatre's production, Tristan & Yseult, which catapulted the company to international success more than a decade ago, is revived at Shakespeare's Globe this summer as part of a major Celtic tour for the company. A tale of forbidden desires, the original play examines the love and betrayal between Tristan, King of Cornwall, and his wife Yseult. The Cornish King rules with his head not his heart but that doesn't stop him from falling head over heels for his enemy's sister. Emma Rice directs the production, which blends comedy, live music, grand passions and tender truths.

 
 
 

The Wind in the Willows

Kenneth Grahame's classic story is brought to life in a new musical.

London Palladium, 8 Argyll Street, London, W1F 7TF

Tube: Oxford Circus Station

 

Dates: From 17th June 2017

 

Following successful runs in Plymouth and Southampton, The Wind in the Willows transfers to the London Palladium in June. Kenneth Grahame's classic story is brought to life in the new musical by Oscar-winning screenwriter and Downton Abbey creator Julian Fellowes and Olivier Award-winning composer George Stiles and lyricist Anthony Drewe. Rufus Hound stars as Mr Toad while other cast members include David Birrell as Badger, Fra Fee ad Mole, Sophia Nomvete and Mrs Otter and Thomas Howes and Rat. Producer Jamie Henry is also ensuring little ones across the capital get to enjoy the classic story by sending free copies of the book to every school and library in London.

 
 
 

The Ferryman

Jez Butterworth's emotionally wrought family drama comes to the West End.

Gielgud Theatre, Shaftesbury Avenue, London, W1D 6AR

Tube: Piccadilly Circus Station , Leicester Square Station

 

Dates: 20th June 2017 to 6th January 2018

 

Following a sold out run at the Royal Court, Jez Butterworth's The Ferryman comes to the West End from June 2017. The Olivier Award-winning playwright, who will forever be remembered for Jerusalem, returns with an emotionally wrought family drama set in 1981 rural Derry. American Beauty's Sam Mendes directs the play, which beings as the Carney farmhouse in Northern Ireland prepares for the annual harvest. A day of hard work on the land and a traditional night of feasting and celebrations lie ahead. But this year they will be interrupted by a visitor. With such an impressive creative team, we advise booking before it sells out.

 
 
 

Greenwich and Docklands International Festival

Two weeks of free outdoor theatre and street performances.

Greenwich, , London, SE10 9HF

Tube: North Greenwich Station

 

Dates: 23rd June - 08th July 2017

 

The whole of Greenwich comes alive for the Greenwich and Docklands International Festival, a two-week free festival of street performances, art and dancing in the streets. This year promises to offer something different and reveal new perspectives on the world through outdoor theatre. It kicks off with A View from the Bridge, which tells the story of dock workers and illegal migrants in search of the American dream. A further theatre highlight is Rear View, presented on a specially adapted double decker bus. The Greenwich Fair also returns with four new shows and the proceedings come to a close with The Colour of Light, which sees enormous colour wheels roll through the streets of Woolwich accompanied by a soundtrack composed by Shri Sriram.

 
 
 
 

Committee

The real-life events of the Kids Company collapse is turned into a musical.

The Donmar Warehouse, 41 Earlham Street, Seven Dials, London, WC2H 9LD

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

 

Dates: 24th June to 12th August 2017

 

Hadley Fraser, Josie Rourke and Tom Deering have transformed the real-life event of the collapse of Kids Company into a musical to be staged at the Donmar Warehouse. The absurdly titled production, The Public Administration And Constitutional Affairs Committee Takes Oral Evidence On Whitehall's Relationship With Kids Company, looks specifically at the evidence given by Camila Batmanghelidjh and Alan Yentob to The Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee. It asks the public to consider how civic life in the UK is really governed and what happens when something goes wrong. Who holds us accountable?

 
 
 

A Tale Of Two Cities

A new play by Matthew Dunster adapted from the novel by Charles Dickens.

Open Air Theatre, Regent's Park, Inner Circle, Regent's Park, London, NW1 4NR

Tube: Regent's Park Station

 

Dates: 7th July to 5th August 2017

 

The second production in this year's Open Air Theatre season, A Tale of Two Cities is a new play by Matthew Dunster adapted from the novel by Charles Dickens. The Victorian story about the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer is as timely as ever, drawing on current concerns of austerity, immigration and the widening poverty gap across Europe. Further productions in this year's season include Oliver Twist and Jesus Christ Superstar.

 
 
 

Much Ado About Nothing

A fresh interpretation of Shakespeare's comedy.

Shakespeare's Globe Theatre, 21 New Globe Walk, Bankside, London, SE1 9DT

Tube: Mansion House Station

 

Dates: 14th July to 15th October 2017

 

Matthew Dunster, Associate Director at Shakespeare's Globe, revives Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing in 2017. The fresh interpretation sees the love stories of Hero and Claudio, and Beatrice and Benedick transported to 1910 Mexico, at the outbreak of the Civil War. Here, stubborn bachelor Benedick is compelled to prove his love for Beatrice by vowing to kill his best friend. Dunster is an Olivier Award-nominated director known for recent productions Imogen, Hangmen, The Seagull and Liberian Girl. There will also be a special midnight performance of the production on Friday 22nd September 2017.

 
 
 

Oliver Twist

A new adaptation of the classic tale created especially for children.

Open Air Theatre, Regent's Park, Inner Circle, Regent's Park, London, NW1 4NR

Tube: Regent's Park Station

 

Dates: 17th July to 5th August 2017

 

Anya Reiss has adapted Charles Dickens' Oliver Twist for this year's Regent's Park Open Air Theatre season, creating a production especially for children. Little ones aged six and over will be able to discover the original story of Victorian London's most famous child in the beautiful surroundings of the central open air theatre. For adults, this year's season also stages On The Town, A Tale of Two Cities and Jesus Christ Superstar.

 
 
 

King Lear

Director Nancy Meckler makes her Globe debut.

Shakespeare's Globe Theatre, 21 New Globe Walk, Bankside, London, SE1 9DT

Tube: Mansion House Station

 

Dates: 10th August to 14th October 2017

 

Best known as artistic director of Shared Experience for 22 years, director Nancy Meckler makes her Globe debut in 2017 with Shakespeare's King Lear. The emotionally wrought drama sees King Lear take the bold decision to divide his kingdom among his three daughters. However, he doesn't anticipate the terrible consequences of his actions and how his generosity will be cruelly repaid.

 
 
 
 

Jesus Christ Superstar

The hugely popular musical returns for another season.

Open Air Theatre, Regent's Park, Inner Circle, Regent's Park, London, NW1 4NR

Tube: Regent's Park Station

 

Dates: 11th August to 16th September 2017

 

Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber's seminal musical returns to the Open Air Theatre once again this year, concluding the 2017 season. "A gorgeous, thrilling, heavenly musical" ran The Guardian headline above its four-star review back in 2015 and it's proved just as popular ever since. Over 45 years after Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber's rock opera Jesus Christ Superstar was first staged, Timothy Sheader's new production introduces a new generation to legendary hits like I Don't Know How to Love Him, Gethsemane and Superstar. This time it's reimagined as a rock festival under the musical direction of Tom Deering with choreography by Drew McOnie and Tom Scutt's "rusty, rough and ready set, with its cruciform walkway".

 
 
 

Against

The world premiere of Christopher Shinn's gripping new drama.

Almeida Theatre, Almeida Street, London, N1 1TA

Tube: Angel Station

 

Dates: 12th August to 30th September 2017

 

Ben Whishaw, who has appeared as Q in the Bond films, in London Spy and The Hour and who won a BAFTA for the BBC adaptation of Richard II, returns to the Almeida following his acclaimed performance as Dionysos in Bakkhai. In Against, Christopher Shinn's gripping new drama set in Silicon Valley, he plays Luke, an ambitious aerospace billionaire who sets out to change the hi-tech landscape. A world premiere, this production is directed by former Royal Court boss Ian Rickson, who also directs Damian Lewis in Edward Albee's The Goat, or Who Is Sylvia? staged in the West End earlier this year.

 
 
 

Boudica

The world premiere of Tristan Bernays' brand new play.

Shakespeare's Globe Theatre, 21 New Globe Walk, Bankside, London, SE1 9DT

Tube: Mansion House Station

 

Dates: 8th September to 1st October 2017

 

This September, Shakespeare's Globe hosts the world premiere of Tristan Bernays' brand new play, Boudica. Directed by Eleanor Rhode, the ancient history play tells the story of one of Britain's most infamous women, who was a queen, a warrior and a rebel. The epic tale of power, politics and love is set in AD 61, Britannia and follows Boudica, the widow of The King of the Iceni, as she tries to claim her rightful throne.

 
 
 
 
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