What’s On Stage In London: April 2014

Welcome to April’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. 

Titus Andronicus at Shakespeare's Globe.

Titus Andronicus at Shakespeare’s Globe.

Musicals and Opera

Treat your ears with: Yankees, Football, Rod Stewart, The Kinks and Puccini. 

1 AprilDamn Yankees at Jack Studio Theatre — Based on the novel The Year the Yankees Lost the Pennant by Douglass Wallop, this musical looks at what happens when a middle-aged baseball fan sells his soul to the Devil. £14/£11, until 12 April

2 AprilOnce We Lived Here at King’s Head Theatre — A UK premiere of this Australian musical that centres around one family’s sheep station in Victoria, Australia. £15-£25, until 26 April

3 AprilThe Beautiful Game at Union Theatre — Over 12 years after it was first seen in the West End, Andrew Lloyd Webber and Ben Elton’s The Beautiful Game, about two teenagers pursuing careers as footballers in politically-troubled Ireland, receives its first London revival. £20/£18, until 3 May

5 AprilLa Boheme at Normansfield Theatre — Vill InCanto performs opera pieces in the style of a music salon so that the audience is in close proximity to the performance. Tonight they cover Puccini’s classic. £20/£16, 7.30pm

8 AprilShellShock at Waterloo East Theatre — A new British musical, featuring 14 original new songs, about the impact one soldier’s return has on his young family. £15/£13, until 19 April

14 AprilSunny Afternoon at Hampstead Theatre — Exploring the rise to stardom of The Kinks, one of Britain’s most iconic bands, Sunny Afternoon is the musical life story of frontman Ray Davies with music and lyrics by the man himself. £15-£32, until 24 May

14 AprilTonight’s the Night at Churchill Theatre Bromley — Another rock legend’s music is brought to the stage, with this musical comedy inspired by the songs of Rod Stewart. £17.90-£45.90, until 19 April

15 AprilA Spoonful of Sherman at St James Studio — Having sold out performances earlier this year, A Spoonful of Sherman returns to celebrate 90 years of Sherman family music including hits from shows such as Mary Poppins, Chitty Chitty Band Bang and The Jungle Book. £20-£25, until 22 April

23 AprilAvenue Q at Greenwich Theatre — Sell a Door Theatre Company revive this critically acclaimed musical at their London home, Greenwich Theatre. £18.50-£26, until 11 May

Dance

Tap, ballet, family and The Tempest.  

3 AprilSoLe Sanctuary at Sadler’s Wells — Tap dancer Savion Glover makes a return to London, to perform the art he has perfected as well as deliver his more unique moves. £12-£38, until 6 April

8 AprilAlain Platel’s tauberbach, Sadler’s Wells — Critically acclaimed contemporary ensemble les ballets C de la B present Alain Platel’s new creation. £17.50, until 9 April

9 AprilLAC (After Swan Lake) at London Coliseum — Les Ballets de Monte Carlo make their London Coliseum debut with their re-interpretation of the infamous Swan Lake. £22-£75, until 12 April

10 AprilThe Winter’s Tale at Royal Opera House — The world premiere of a new ballet by Artistic Associate Christopher Wheeldon, based on Shakespeare’s enduring tale of love, loss and reconciliation. £5-£95, until 8 May

11 AprilThe Rite of Spring & Petrushka at Sadler’s Wells — A Stravinsky double bill of dance theatre, the two performances together are said to be “a contrast in light and dark”. £12-£38, until 12 April

15 AprilRodin at London Coliseum — Eifman Ballet returns to London with the UK premiere of Rodin, a story inspired by the world-famous sculptor’s passionate relationship with his apprentice, who spent 30 years in a mental asylum following their breakup. £10-£65, until 17 April

16 AprilThe Rashomon Effect/Vertical Road at Sadler’s Wells — Following a national tour, National Youth Dance Company returns with a brand new double bill by Guest Artistic Director Akram Khan. £10/£5, 7.30pm

18 AprilRapunzel (Family Weekend) at Sadler’s Wells — Dance for all the family, at Sadler’s Wells’ annual two-day festival where dance is teamed with an array of games and activities happening all over the building. This year, balletLORENT’s Rapunzel returns to the main stage. £15, until 19 April

19 AprilAnna Karenina at London Coliseum — Alongside Rodin (above), Eifman Ballet also present a performance of Anna Karenina as part of the UK-Russia Year of Culture 2014. £10-£65, 2pm and 7.30pm

24 AprilNanny McPhee at Peacock Theatre — A ballet adaptation of the blockbuster film comes to the stage courtesy of London Children’s Ballet. £14-£55, until 27 April

25 AprilThe Tempest Replica at Sadler’s Wells — Pite’s Kidd Pivot company presents its latest work, The Tempest Replica, based on motifs from Shakespeare’s The Tempest. £17.50, until 26 April

Rodin at London Coliseum

Rodin at London Coliseum

Contemporary

The more unusual subject matters: Banksy, public toilets, a public leader-off and a new King Charles.

1 AprilI Found My Horn at Trafalgar Studios — Directed by Harry Burton and adapted from a book by Jasper Rees, I Found My Horn makes its West End debut, telling the story of one man’s attempt to confront his demons through making music. £15-£30, until 3 May

1 AprilBanksy: The Room In The Elephant at Arcola Theatre — Based on an incredible true story, Banksy: The Room In The Elephant tells the story of a man forced out of his makeshift home by a few painted words, and one street artist’s attempt to make amends. £12-£17, until 26 April

1 AprilOccupied at Theatre503 — Driven by a desire for belonging, two Romanian immigrants kidnap an Englishman to learn how to be English. Set in a derelict Victorian public toilet, Occupied is a darkly comic play about identity in crises. £15/£10, until 26 April

2 AprilWaist at The Hope Theatre — Waist is a new play about kebabs, satyrs, and not being alone, from a Royal Court Young Writer who has been shortlisted for the RSC Other Prize. £14/£12, until 26 April

2 AprilAn Evening With Gary Lineker at Waterloo East Theatre — Sorry if this disappoints, but this isn’t actually an evening with Gary Lineker. Instead it’s a comedy about one of the most dramatic football matches of all times, and five friends whose lives will be changed by the end of it. £10-£14, until 5 April

3 AprilHandbagged at Vaudeville Theatre — “The monarch – Liz. Her most powerful subject – Maggie … One destined to rule, the other elected to lead. But when the stiff upper lip softened and the gloves came off, which one had the upper hand?” A provocative comedy about two giants of the 20th century. £21-£53.50, until 2 August

3 AprilBirdland at The Royal Court Theatre — Rock star Paul is at the height of his fame during the last week of his international tour, but what happens when the music starts to jar and the return home becomes a reality? £10-£32, until 31 May

3 April – King Charles III at Almeida Theatre — A controversial new play by Mike Bartlett, looking at the people beneath the crowns and the conscience of Britain’s most famous family, as Prince Charles ascends the throne after the death of The Queen. £9-£36, until 31 May

8 AprilA Double Bill of New Writing by James McAnespy at White Bear Theatre — CLG and Sitting Up For Michael — two bittersweet comedies that explore themes of family, bereavement, unemployment, bullying and other aspects of 21st century life in Ireland. £14/£10, until 27 April

15 AprilArchimedes’ Principle at Park Theatre — A town is haunted by an incident at the nearby Scouts centre. Swimming lessons come to a halt when a swimming instructor is accused of inappropriately touching a child. How much do we really know about the people we work with? £19.50/£16, until 7 May

22 AprilOn Tidy Endings and Safe Sex at Tristan Bates Theatre — Two short plays from Tony Award-winning Harvey Fierstein about sexuality, health and losing someone you love. £13/£10, until 17 May

22 AprilThe Believers at Tricycle Theatre — Frantic Assembly and Bryony Lavery follow the success of their previous collaborations with this highly visceral exploration of love and loss. £11-£29, until 17 May

30 AprilForeplay at Kings Head Theatre — A psycho-sexual thriller of betrayal and revenge, Foreplay looks into the public, and private, lives of some of the greatest intellectuals of the 20th century. £15.75-£25, until 31 May

Gandini Juggling at Udderbelly Festival

Gandini Juggling at Udderbelly Festival

Alternative

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

1 April – Richard III at Rose Theatre Bankside — Who was Richard III? Shakespeare told us he was evil but was he really a dangerous tyrant? Down among the foundations of The Rose, puppets, music and physical theatre will bring the history of one of England’s most debated figures to life. £13.20/£11, until 26 April

2 April: Never Try This At Home at Soho Theatre — A satire looking back at 1970s kids’ TV shows. Expect custard pies, buckets of water and foam hammers aplenty – waterproof ponchos provided. You’ve been warned. £10-£20, until 27 April

8 AprilOrpheus at Battersea Arts Centre — Little Bulb Theatre bring their acclaimed Orpheus production back to Battersea Arts Centre, where the audience are transported to 1930’s Paris for a musical re-imagining of the Greek myth. £15-£25, until 17 May

10 April – Udderbelly Festival at Southbank Centre — Udderbelly is back inside the upside-down purple cow for another summer of cabaret, circus and physical theatre. We’re especially looking forward to Gandini Juggling and Late Night Gimp Fight. Until 13 July

18 AprilBrand New Ancients by Kate Tempest, Battersea Arts Centre — You’ll need to be quick if you want to secure tickets for this spoken word performance by Kate Tempest, as she tells an everyday epic over a live score played by tuba, cello, violin, drums and electronics. £15, until 20 April

18 AprilBearskin at The Islington — Travel into a story world with Arcane Productions, as they bring a classic Grimm’s fairy tale called Bearskin to life. Part of their ongoing series called The Travelling Storybox. £12.65/£8.50, from 6.30pm

22 AprilOdyssey at Battersea Arts Centre — We’re back at Battersea Arts Centre for a retelling of Homer’s epic, told with illustration, puppetry, projections and visual trickery. £17.50/£15, until 23 April

29 AprilRed Bastard at The Pleasance — Eric Davis — aka Red Bastard — is a comedy monster. Well he certainly looks like one. Join him for a night of crossed boundaries, existential crises and improvisation. £10-£15, until 6 May

Red Bastard at The Pleasance

Red Bastard at The Pleasance

Drama

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

1 AprilA Small Family Business at National Theatre — Alan Ayckbourn’s A Small Family Business, an exposure of entrepreneurial greed, returns to the National where it premiered in 1987, this time with Nigel Lindsay as the lead. £15-£50, until 31 May

1 AprilBlood Wedding at Lion & Unicorn Theatre — Produced by the KDC Theatre, a London-based amateur theatre group dedicated to giving Londoners the chance to put on and perform plays, Blood Wedding explores love lost, love won and love that refuses to die. £12/£10, until 5 April

2 AprilBomber’s Moon at Park Theatre — Meet former RAF gunner Jimmy and his new care assistant David at this drama by Screenwriter William Ivory. Both have been through the wars. £12-£19.50, until 11 May

4 AprilA View from the Bridge at Young Vic — Arthur Miller confronts the American dream in a new production this dark and passionate tale, featuring Mark Strong and Nicola Walker and directed by Ivo van Hove. £10-£35, until 7 June

9 AprilOh My Sweet Land at Young Vic — A dramatic exploration of the crisis in Syria, told through the stories of its 2 million refugees. £19.50/£10, until 3 May

10 April - Good People at Noel Coward Theatre — Imelda Staunton plays Margie, a single-mother whose plan to corner an ex boyfriend results in unexpected consequences for them both. On stage for 10 weeks only following a run at Hampstead Theatre. £12.25-£87/25, until 14 June

10 AprilPrivacy at Donmar Warehouse — Is there really such a thing as privacy anymore? James Graham brings wit and insight to this dramatic investigation of the digital age, exploring how how governments and corporations collect and use our personal information. £7.50-£35, until 31 May

14 AprilWomen of Twilight at Pleasance Theatre — The acclaimed 11F revival of Sylvia Rayman’s hard-hitting ‘all-women play’ comes to the Pleasance for a limited run of 13 performances. £14/£10, until 27 April

15 AprilThe Silver Tassie at National Theatre — Sean O’Casey’s rarely performed anti-war play of 1928 focuses on the horror and waste of war, approaching the topic with dark humour and wit. £15-£50, until 21 May

22 AprilLucifer Saved at Lion and Unicorn Theatre — The Abyss Theatre Company combine poetry and theatre to tell the story of an army chaplain who loses a very important memory while serving in Berlin. £19/£15, until 17 May

22 AprilMartine at Finborough Theatre — Originally written in 1922, Martine was produced all over the world during the 1920s. The tragic love story follows a young girl as she meets a young man just back from fighting in Syria. £14-£18, until 17 May

30 AprilMy Name Is at Arcola Theatre — This new play about shifting identities is based on a true story, and centres around a young girl who turns her back on Western life. £12-£17, until 24 May

Privacy at Donmar Warehouse.

Privacy at Donmar Warehouse.

Classic

Still going strong after all this time: Marston, Brontë, Wilde and of course, Shakespeare.

3 AprilThe Malcontent at Sam Wanamaker Playhouse — John Marston’s Jacobean comedy, first performed in the Blackfriars playhouse, is back to continue its obsession with lust, greed and violence. £10-£60, until 19 April

8 AprilThe Notorious Mrs Ebbsmith at Jermyn Street Theatre — First performed in the West End in 1895, this is the first ever revival of the play by Victorian playwright Arthur Wing Pinero, about two mysterious Londoners’ arrival in Venice. £20/£16, until 3 May

8 AprilWuthering Heights at Rosemary Branch Theatre — A brand new production of Emily Brontë’s complex tale of cruelty, passion, jealousy and revenge. £13/£11, until 27 April

8 AprilSchool for Scandal at Barons Court Theatre — Haven’t you heard? You’ll never guess! From the private clubs of Soho to the designer shops of Sloane St, tales are circulating and scandal is spreading. Set in the present day, Urgent Breath’s new production draws on the themes of celebrity and tabloid journalism. £12-£10, until 13 April

9 April’Tis Pity She’s A Whore at the Barbican — Transposed to a contemporary, visceral setting, John Ford’s potent tragedy charts an incestuous relationship. Presented by Barbican Artistic Associate Cheek by Jowl. £21-£26, until 26 April

16 AprilThe School for Scheming at Orange Tree Theatre — Just how far will people to go to attain position and fortune and who will they be prepared to sacrifice along the way? A new production of Dion Boucicault’s classic comedy. £12.50-£22, until 17 May

16 AprilDorian Gray at Riverside Studios — London’s dark underbelly comes to the fore in Oscar Wilde’s Dorian Gray. Join this A Ruby in the Dust production and step into Victorian London’s murky streets. £18.50/£15, until 10 May

23 AprilUncle Vanya at Wyndham’s Theatre — The renowned theatre director, producer and screenwriter Andrei Konchalovsky transfers his production of Anton Chekhov’s Uncle Vanya from Moscow’s Moccobeta State Academic Theatre to London’s Wyndham’s Theatre. £24.75-£77.25, until 3 May

24 AprilTitus Andronicus at Globe Theatre — Grotesquely violent and experimental, Titus Andronicus a terrible cycle of mutilation, rape and murder. Cheery stuff. £5-£39, until 14 July

28 April1984 at Playhouse Theatre — The critically acclaimed Headlong production of 1984 transfers to the Playhouse Theatre London, following its successful run at Almeida Theatre. £25-£67, until 19 July

'Tis Pity She's A Whore at the Barbican

‘Tis Pity She’s A Whore at the Barbican

Kids

Minotaurs, rubbish and animated squiggles.

4 AprilMinotaur at Polka Theatre — Freddie receives a mysterious text from his dad, a soldier fighting in a faraway war. Soon he is transported to the twisting, turning labyrinth of ancient Minos and must travel through time to fulfil his destiny. Can he rescue his father? £13.50/£9, until 24 May

4 AprilCharlie and Lola’s Extremely New Play at artsdepot — Enter a magical journey through the seasons as Charlie and Lola, from the ever popular BBC TV series return to the stage for and adventure with puppets, live action and music. £8-£13, until 9 April

5 AprilThe Butterfly Lovers at Blue Elephant Theatre — A captivating tale about friendship, The Butterfly Lovers is a vibrant new adaptation for children of the Chinese legend of Liang and Zhu. £4.50/£3, until 19 April

8 AprilMy First Ballet: Coppélia at Peacock Theatre — A melodic score and narration accompany this comic family tale about an eccentric toymaker and his mechanical doll. £10-£25, until 19 April

8 AprilTown Mouse Country Mouse at Polka Theatre — A musical puppet play retelling two classic Æsop’s Fables – Town Mouse and Country Mouse and Belling the Cat. £11/£8.50, until 12 April

11 April – Rubbish at Southbank Centre — Immerse yourself in an inventive world with leading children’s theatre company Theatre-Rites, where rubbish in transformed before your eyes with the touch of a puppeteer’s hand. £12/£6, until 21 April

26 AprilSensacional at Unicorn Theatre — Bring your toddler to a sound and light show in which they are the participants. Once they’ve put on a white suit they become part of a digital world of ladybirds, shapes, squiggles and squarks that won’t keep still. £10, until 11 May

Sensacional at Unicorn Theatre

Sensacional at Unicorn Theatre

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

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