What’s On Stage In London: February 2014

Welcome to February’s edition of our What’s On Stage In London series, where we look at the month ahead to give you our pick of new openings. Organised by (very general) category and opening date, we hope this will allow you to browse and book ahead of time so you don’t miss out on seeing your favourite London shows. Useful? Missing something? Pile of crap? Please let us know. 

Rigoletto at London Coliseum (photo: a scene from the Canadian Opera Company production of Rigoletto 2011, by Michael Cooper)

Rigoletto at London Coliseum (photo: a scene from the Canadian Opera Company production of Rigoletto 2011, by Michael Cooper)

Musicals & Opera

Treat your ears with: Mozart, Handel, Verdi and … X Factor? 

1 Feb - Don Giovanni at Royal Opera House — As always with the Royal Opera House, book quickly if you’d like to see this new production of Mozart’s sublime tragicomedy as tickets are selling fast. £9-£195, until 24 Feb

1 Feb - Oh, What A Lovely War! at Stratford East — Built upon the songs that ordinary British soldiers sang during a war that killed ten million in four years this production is a powerful comment against war and staged to coincide with the 100th anniversary of WW1. £10-£49.50, until 15 March

11 Feb - Wuthering Heights at Barons Court Theatre — Wuthering Heights. Staged as a musical. £10/£8.50, until 15 Feb

12 Feb - Kiss Me, Figaro! at Riverside Studios — Merry Opera present a new opera with a romcom twist, featuring classic music by Mozart, Handel and Puccini. £22.50, until 2 March

13 Feb - Rigoletto at London Coliseum — A new English National Opera production of Verdi’s masterpiece from Olivier Award-winning director Christopher Alden. £84-£110, until 14 March

20 Feb - The Full Monty at Noel Coward Theatre — The 1997 film was a cracker and now The Fully Monty is on stage. Complemented by songs from the soundtrack, we think it’s going to be hot stuff (or just bloody funny). £4.75-£52.50, until 14 June

21 Feb - The A-Z of Mrs P at Southwark Playhouse — London. Maps. Isy Suttie. There is literally nothing we don’t like the sound of at this brand new musical, which tells the story of Phyllis Pearsall, the creator of the first London A-Z. £22/£18, until 29 March

22 Feb - Urinetown at St James Theatre — The UK premiere of the Tony award-winning musical about a city of the future where all public toilets have been monopolised and getting caught short can have disastrous consequences. £17.50-£39.50, until 3 May

28 Feb - Rodelinda at London Coliseum — Director Richard Jones takes on Handel’s epic story of love, power and mistaken identity in another English National Opera production. £84-£99, until 15 March

27 Feb - I Can’t Sing! – The X Factor Musical at London Palladium — Hotly anticipated, this musical comedy written by comedian Harry Hill takes on the monster reality show of the same name. £20-£65, until 25 October

Dance

Performances inspired from fire, street dance, fairytales and alcohol.

4-6 Feb - Don QuixoteGiselle and Swan Lake at New Wimbledon Theatre — Three one-off performance over three nights as these classic ballets are brought to life by the Russian State Ballet of Siberia. £13.90-£49.90+bf

5 Feb - Drunk at Bridewell Theatre — Celebrating one of our greatest vices, dance-drama Drunk explores our love of alcohol with the help of an original score, live band and talented company of dancers. £20, until 1 March

7 Feb - Rhapsody / The Art of Fugue / Gloria at Royal Opera House — A celebration of three defining choreographers of The Royal Ballet: Frederick Ashton, Kenneth MacMillan and Wayne McGregor. £4-£64, until 15 Feb

8 Feb - Ignis at The Print Room — Original music and choreography combine in this dance theatre performance inspired by the powerful qualities of fire. £23/£17, until 1 March

18 Feb - Blaze at Peacock Theatre — Pop, lock and drop it at Blaze, a high-energy street dance show that has performed to over 300,000 people around the world. £12-£38, until 8 March

21 Feb - Cloud Gate Dance Theatre of Taiwan at Sadlers Wells – Cloud Gate was the first contemporary dance company in any Chinese speaking community. Now they are known for their original performances and spectacular sets. £22-£38, until 27 Feb

22 FebThe Sleeping Beauty at Royal Opera House — Journey with The Royal Ballet to an enchanted world of princesses, fairy godmothers and magic spells in Petipa’s classic ballet. £4-£75, until 9 April (booking opens at 10am on 14 January)

25 FebBallet Black at Royal Opera House — Cassa Pancho’s company of black and Asian classically trained dancers perform pieces by Arthur Pita, Christopher Marney and Martin Lawrance. £8-£25, until 4 March

Cloud Gate Dance Theatre of Taiwan at Sadlers Wells

Cloud Gate Dance Theatre of Taiwan at Sadlers Wells

Drama

Focused, thoughtful or hard-hitting, these productions look set to provide high drama. 

2 FebThe Domino Heart at Finborough Theatre — The story of three total strangers who are inextricably linked, The Domino Heart is the UK debut of Canadian playwright Matthew Edison. £18/£16 until 18 Feb

3 FebNot I, Footfalls, Rockaby at Duchess Theatre – Lisa Dwan’s one-woman Samuel Beckett trilogy transfers to Duchess Theatre for a limited time after its run at the Royal Court. £12-£25, until 15 Feb

4 FebMatryoshka’s Journey at Barons Court Theatre — A symbolic play about a girl who, having come to the realisation that for her whole life she has never shown her true self, embarks on a journey to find herself. £12/£10, until 9 Feb

4 FebJoy Division – Nazi Sex Slaves Story at The London Theatre — This over 18s only play tells the story of the women used as sex slaves in Nazi Germany’s forced labour camps. £12.50, until 8 Feb

4 FebThe White Carnation at Jermyn Street Theatre — The White Carnation transfers after a sell-out run at the Finborough Theatre for three weeks only, telling the ghostly tale of one man’s chance to do things differently. £22/£18, until 22 Feb

6 FebIn Skagway at Arcola Theatre — A tale of the desires and loyalties of two women in an American wilderness, in a lyrical first play by Irish writer Karen Ardiff. £17/£12, until 1 March

7 FebWaiting for Summer at Etcetera Theatre — Swivel Theatre Company presents a series of short plays about Arab women in revolution. £8.50, until 9 Feb

10 FebIn The Thrice Ninth Kingdom at Tristan Bates Theatre — Set against the backdrop of increasing violent attacks on young gays and lesbians in Russia and in many other parts of the world, this play focuses on the reality of life for persecuted minorities. £16/£14, until 16 Feb

10 FebA Taste of Honey at National Theatre — One of the taboo-breaking plays of the 1950s, A Taste of Honey celebrates the vulnerabilities and strengths of the female spirit in a deprived and restless world. £12-£50, until 5 April

11 FebJack Charles v The Crown at Barbican – Ilbijerri Theatre Company presents a one-man show that, using words and song, tells the story of Australian legend Uncle Jack Charles. £18, until 15 Feb

16 FebMissing at New Diorama — In Britain, one person goes missing every two minutes. This is the crux of a new play, devised from first-hand interviews gathered by the cast and developed in collaboration with journalists from national newspapers. £12.50/£10.50, until 17 February

18 FebOur Big Land at Ovalhouse — A play with songs that explores the 2,000 year history of Romany Gypsies through one woman’s very personal story. £14/£10/£8, until 8 March

18 FebThe Prime of Miss Jean Brodie at Barons Court Theatre — Stage adaptation of the novel by Muriel Spark, that captured a vivid picture of school life in 1930′s Edinburgh and that most memorable of teachers, Miss Jean Brodie. £12/£10, until 9 March

18 FebFrankenstein at Lion & Unicorn Theatre — Rescued near the North Pole, a dying Victor Frankenstein tells British explorer Captain Robert Walton the incredible tale of his cursed life, in this adaptation by Adam Dechanel. £19/£15, until 5 March

20 FebVersailles at Donmar Warehouse — At the start of the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of hostilities in 1914, this major new play draws connections between pivotal moments at the end of WWI and the world we live in today. £7.50-£35, until 5 April

25 FebVariation On A Theme at Finborough Theatre — An emotionally charged story of desire and disillusionment, this production of Terence Rattigan’s Variation on a Theme stars twice Olivier Award nominated Rachael Stirling. £18/£16/£4, until 22 March

25 FebBlue Remembered Hills at New Diorama — Seven seven-year-olds spend a WWII afternoon playing but soon things take a dark turn. New Rep Theatre present Dennis Potter’s Blue Remembered Hills. £12.50/£10.50, until 15 March

A Taste of Honey at National Theatre

A Taste of Honey at National Theatre

Contemporary

The more unusual subject matters: inside the Tower of London, a runaway rabbit, a faltering donut shop and Picasso’s relationship with the Mona Lisa.

3 Feb - Awake at Etcetera Theatre — It’s the middle of the night, but three women in three different houses cannot sleep. Through worry, through nerves, through fear, they are awake. £8, until 3 Feb

3 Feb - The Keepers at Etcetera Theatre — Inside the Tower of London live an unusual set of guardians. The Keepers follows seven characters whose whole lives are spent inside those same four walls, defending a country they never see. £8, until 5 Feb

4 Feb - Ham and Static at The Space — Two plays: the first retelling the story of Noah’s Ark and the second a coming of age tale about a technology-dependent generation. £12/£8, until 15 Feb

4 Feb - Running On Empty at Soho Theatre – Dance, theatre and song combine in this performance about a woman’s loss and her struggle for a future £17.50/£15, until 16 Feb

5 Feb - Him With His Foot In His Mouth at Greenwich Theatre — A one man show about saying the wrong thing (we’ve all been there), based on the novella by Saul Bellow. £21/£18.50, until 8 Feb

11 Feb - Superior Donuts at Southwark Playhouse — Arthur Przybyszewski runs the small donut shop set up by his Polish immigrant father and while neglected and damaged, Superior Donuts survives on a diverse group of loyal local customers. A new play from Tony- and Pulitzer Prize-winning American playwright Tracy Letts. £18/£16, until 8 March

11 Feb - The Final Revelation of Sherlock Holmes at Pleasance Theatre — All is not well at 221b Baker Street, but could one last case repair Holmes and Watson’s fortunes? Performed by Let Them Call It Mischief — a theatre company dedicated to bringing theatre about London to a London audience.  £13.50/£10, until 2 March

11 Feb - The Peculiar Tale of Pablo Picasso and the Mona Lisa at The Jack Studio Theatre — Based on true events, Picasso finds himself embroiled in a tale of mayhem and is arrested in association with the theft of the Mona Lisa from the Louvre. £14/£11, until 1 March

11 Feb - The Secret Life of You and Me at Ovalhouse — “A live scrap book. An unfinished love affair. A made up true story”. Part live performance, part art installation, artist Lowri Evans attempts to piece together the milestones of her life, your life and all of our lives. £14/£10/£8, until 15 Feb

12 Feb - Thirsty at Greenwich Theatre — Another boozy focus, Thirsty by award-winning company The Paper Birds weaves together real stories, memories and booze-based confessions, all collected from a ‘drunken hotline’ an online questionnaire. £16/£11, until 13 Feb

18 Feb - Wanted: Rabbit at Unicorn Theatre — Dutch theatre-makers Maas Theater & Dans. bring us the story of three police officers on the hunt for a bunny on the run. £10-£16, until 23 Feb

25 Feb - Analog.Ue at National Theatre — Daniel Kitson returns to the National Theatre with a new show about a prerecorded story. £12, until 20 March

The Final Revelation of Sherlock Holmes at Pleasance Theatre

The Final Revelation of Sherlock Holmes at Pleasance Theatre

Classic

Still going strong after all this time: Shakespeare, Marlowe, Orwell, Williams and even more Shakespeare

4 FebRichard III at Upstairs at the Gatehouse — Hiraeth Artistic Productions presents Shakespeare’s drama at this 128-seat fringe venue, above The Gatehouse Pub in Highgate. £16/£14/£10, until 1 March

4 FebDoctor Faustus at Rose Theatre Bankside — The infamous legend of the man who sells his soul to the Devil in exchange for 24 years of knowledge and power is back at Rose Theatre where it was first performed 420 years ago. £12/£10, until 28 Feb

4 FebA Midsummer Night’s Dream at Jack Studio Theatre — A Midsummer Night’s Dream is an iconic comedy, but in this production by Immersion Theatre, the  audiences chooses what world they want to experience: the dream or the nightmare. £14/£11, until 8 Feb

6 FebA Midsummer Night’s Dream at Barbican — Another installation of this Shakespeare classic, this time courtesy of Bristol Old Vic’s Artistic Director Tom Morris and Handspring Puppet Company (who worked together on War Horse) for a beautifully visual version. £16-£35, until 15 Feb

8 FebHannah at Unicorn Theatre — A reimagining of Marlowe’s Doctor Faustus that follows the character of Hannah, a girl whose life is turned upside down. £10-£16, until 2 March

8 Feb1984 at Almeida Theatre – April, 1984. 13:00. Comrade 6079, Winston Smith, thinks a thought, starts a diary, and falls in love. But Big Brother is always watching. A new adaptation of George Orwell’s classic. £8-£32, until 29 March

10 FebCover Her Face at Bethnal Green Working Men’s Club – A new version of John Webster’s The Duchess of Malfi, performed by an all-male cast. £12+bf, until 15 Feb

13 FebThe Fat Man’s Wife at Canal Cafe Theatre — Written by Tennessee Williams in 1938, The Fat Man’s Wife remained unproduced until 2004, when it opened in New York. This is its UK premiere. £12.50/£10.50, until 2 March

14 FebMore Ado About Nothing at The Cockpit — described on the website as “a totally Chinese version of Much Ado About Nothing“. Interesting. £15/£12, until 15 Feb

Kids

Monsters or ducklings?

15 Feb - Not Now, Bernard at Unicorn Theatre — “There’s a monster in the garden and it’s going to eat me“. We loved (and still love) this rather macabre children’s book by David McKee about a young boy whose parents are too preoccupied to notice their new visitor, now brought to life by Unicorn Theatre. £10-£16, until 9 March

18 Feb - Ugly Duckling at Polka Theatre — Major Mustard combines puppetry, music and storytelling in a reworking of this popular tale that brings together many of the themes of Hans Christian Andersen’s poignant story. £10/£8+bf, until 22 Feb

Alternative

Think you’ve already seen it all? Give these more unusual productions a go. 

9 FebInterval. So Far at The Cockpit — In a one-night special, Interval Productions perform a little bit of every show they’ve ever done. £18/£15

10 FebCirque Berserk at New Wimbledon Theatre — Direct from Hyde Park’s Winter Wonderland, Cirque Beserk bring their circus skills and stunt action to the theatre. £21.90-£29.90, until 12 Feb

13 Feb - Ghost Stories at Arts Theatre — If you were too scared to try out this knee-trembler of a show during its original run in 2010/2011, now you have another chance. Ghost Stories (which is just that – ghost stories, on stage) is back for another jumpy, screamy, bladder twitchy run. From £25, until 24 May

17 FebBallad of the Burning Star at Battersea Arts Centre – Armed with music, killer heels and a lethal troop of divas, an enraged Israeli executes a story of victimhood, persecution and love on a journey into the core of the conflicted Jewish State. £15/£12, until 8 March

18 FebOpus: Circa & Debussy String Quartet at Barbican — Fourteen artists tumble, spin and fly around to Shostakovich’s music, played live on stage by the Debussy String Quartet. £16-£30, until 22 Feb

20 FebPortofino Ballad at Barbican — Puppets, music and storytelling combine imaginatively in Peter Rinderknecht’s poignant show about family ties. £8.50, until 23 Feb

25 Feb - Mozart Undone at Barbican — Live rock concert, visual spectacle, cabaret act, this theatre concert takes the music of Mozart and gives it a distinctly rock’n'roll twist. £16-£28, until 1 March

Opus: Circa & Debussy String Quartet at Barbican. Photo: Herve All

Opus: Circa & Debussy String Quartet at Barbican. Photo: Herve All

What are you planning on seeing on stage in London this February? Any of the above tickle your fancy? Seeing something not listed here? Tell us in the comments. 

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