What’s On Stage In London: May 2014

Ruth Hargreaves
By Ruth Hargreaves Last edited 89 months ago
What’s On Stage In London: May 2014

Welcome to May’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? Please let us know.

Miss Saigon at Prince Edward Theatre.

Musicals and Opera

1 May - The Pajama Game at Shaftesbury Theatre — This broadway classic transfers to London's West End, telling the story of blossoming love within a 1950s pajama factory. £20-£65, until 13 September

3 May - Miss Saigon at Prince Edward Theatre — Love, war and music abounds as Miss Saigon returns to London following its run at London's Theatre Royal Drury Lane 25 years ago. £27.50-£67.50, until 25 October

3 May - Thebans at London Coliseum — British composer Julian Anderson teams up with playwright Frank McGuinness for a musical re-telling of Sophocles' Theban tragedies. Poor old Oedipus. £43-£60, until 3 June

6 May - How To Succeed in Business Without Really Trying at Ye Olde Rose and Crown Theatre — A satire of big business, climbing the corporate ladder and the dangers of power in this musical revival. £15/£12.50, until 24 May

9 May - In The Heights at Southwark Playhouse — Winner of the 2008 Tony Award for Best Musical, In The Heights is a journey into Washington Heights, one of Manhattan’s most vibrant communities. £12-£22, until 7 June

12 May - Somewhere Under the Rainbow at Landor Theatre — Join West End performer Sharon Sexton as she charts the life, loves and music of Liza Minnelli, in the London debut of Cillian O'Dee's one-woman show. £15, until 17 May

14 May - Romeo and Juliet at Rose Theatre, Kingston — Riverside Opera present Gounoud's version of the tragic tale marrying professional soloists with a community chorus. £9-£26, until 17 May

14 May - The Blonde Bombshells of 1943 at Upstairs at the Gatehouse — It's 1943 and Betty's female swing band urgently needs new recruits, a story inspired by Ivy Benson's all-girl dance band. £10-£18, until 29 June

15 May - The Last Five Years at Greenwich Theatre — Ever felt the sensation of time going backwards? What if the love of your life was still moving forwards? Two New Yorkers are falling in and out of love, but they'll only meet in the middle. £10-£15, until 17 May

17 May - Triptych at The Print Room — Opera Erratica and The Print Room present an original opera, inspired by the structure of puccini's Il Trittico, and comprising three genre pieces: a tragedy, a comedy and a piece about nuns. £23/£17, until 7 June

17 May - Operantics! at Rose Theatre Kingston — Opera for all the family, as Laura Bacon and Riverside Opera provide a musical and theatrical introduction to the genre. Singalong! £10/£5, 3pm

19 May - Godspell at The Lyric Theatre — From the composer of Wicked, Godspell returns to London for a one-night-only Broadway revival to raise money for the excellent Make-A-Wish Foundation. £22.50-£47.50, 7.30pm

A Darker Shade of Fado at artsdepot


1 May - It Goes Here Now at Blue Elephant Theatre — Dance theatre Tempered Body explores the cultural debate on genetic modification and designer babies through contemporary dance. £8.50/£7, until 2 May

1 May - A Darker Shade of Fado at arts depot — Artist Nuno Silva brings together an international team of dancers for a Fado performance, a type of traditional dance described at 'the blues of Portugal'. £12/£10, 7.30pm

3 May - Breakin’ Convention at Sadler’s Wells — Sadler’s Wells’ critically acclaimed international festival of hip hop dance theatre is back for its 11th year, with another line-up of hip hop dance performances by companies from around the world. £20/£15, until 5 May

6 May - Havana Rakatan at Peacock Theatre — Salsa, mambo, jazz, bolero, son, cha-cha-cha and rumba all come alive in a dance display of Cuban passion, performed alongside a live eight-piece band. £15-£42, until 24 May

8 May - Tragédie at Sadler’s Wells — Focusing on the anatomy of the human body, Tragédie sees nine male and nine female dancers stripped bare to explore the human condition. £12-£32, until 10 May

16 May - Cosi Fan Tutte at London Coliseum — A new English National Opera production of Mozart’s masterpiece, Cosi Fan Tutte, follows a trail of deceit, lust and the blurred lines between reality and make-believe as two men decide to 'test' their fiancees. £84-£110, until 2 July

20 May - Rambert at Sadler’s Wells — Dance company Rambert brings an eclectic programme to Sadler's Wells, showcasing the dancers’ athleticism and versatility. £8-£38, until 24 May

22 May - Choreographics at Barbican — Five English National Ballet company members work with five composers to develop original musical dance performances in response to the Great War. £15, until 24 May

27 May - Vortex Temporum at Sadler’s Wells — The dancers of Rosas pair with their long-time collaborators, the musicians of Ictus to celebrate the intricacies of contemporary music. £12-£27, until 29 May

27 May - Flash Mob at Peacock Theatre — Back for a second season, Flash Mob features a huge range of dance style from street dance to salsa, Celtic to contemporary, and also features performers from Strictly Come Dancing and Britain's Got Talent. £15-£38, until 8 June


6 May - A Trick to Catch the Old One at Rose Theatre Bankside — Thomas Middleton's tale of scheming, greed and money comes to the atmospheric Rose Theatre. £12/£10, until 24 May

13 May - Desdemonda: A Play About a Handkerchief at Park Theatre — Playwright Paula Vogel exposes a very different side to Othello's wife, in this re-imagining of Shakespeare's classic. £12-£19.50, until 8 June

13 May - Romeo & Juliet at The Space — Off West End-nominated director, Amber Elliott, returns to The Space with Shakespeare's tragic story of young love. £12/£10, until 31 May

13 May - Woyzeck at The London Theatre — Georg Buchner's unfinished play deals with jealousy, dehumanisation and the ever shifting boundaries of reality in the face of tragedy. £10.50/£5, until 18 May

14 May - Romeo & Juliet at Rose Theatre Kingston — Another retelling of this Shakespeare classic but this time in opera form, as Riverside Opera stages Charles Gounod's operatic interpretation in a brand new English translation. £9-£26, until 17 May

15 May - All My Sons at Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre — Arthur Miller’s 20th Century classic is a story of denial, guilt and social responsibility, as a wartime secret threatens to overshadow a long summer's day. £25-£53, until 7 June

17 May - Antony & Cleopatra at Globe Theatre — Virtue, vice, love and politics combine in Antony and Cleopatra, Shakespeare’s play on the conflicting claims of sex and power. £15-£39, until 24 August

20 May - Medea at The London Theatre — Euripides' tragedy centres around a one woman's revenge against her unfaithful husband and how far she goes to convey her wrath. £12.50, until 25 May

28 May - Hamlet at Riverside Studios — It's Hamlet, it needs no introduction. But this production will be the penultimate theatrical production at Riverside Studios before its two-year closure for expansion and refurbishment. £14/£12, until 22 June

Pirate Gran at artsdepot


4 May - The Magic Cavern 1000th Performance at Barons Court Theatre — Join The Magic Cavern, London's longest running magic and illusion show, and its creator/presenter Richard Leigh for his 1,000th performance. £8-£12, 3pm

4 May - The Frog & The Princess at artsdepot — Join the Frog and the Princess in an emotional journey from rejection to friendship as they discover that, deep down, they are not so very different after all. Based on the Brothers Grimm fairytale. £7, 11am and 2pm

16 May - Chalk About at Unicorn Theatre — Dance about, question about and chalk about at this playful look at identity and how we see ourselves. £10-£16, until 17 May

22 May - O Snap at Unicorn Theatre — Designed for children aged 13+, O Snap brings together three young dancers to explore friendship, loyalty and what matters most when you're young. By choreographer Erik Kaiel. £10-£16, until 23 May

23 May - Pirate Gran at artsdepot — Meet Gran: she bakes, she knits. Oh, she's a pirate too. With a pet crocodile and sense of adventure, Pirate Gran is never dull. Little audience members are encouraged to don their finest swashbuckling outfits. £11/£9, until 24 May

24 May - Alice in Wonderland at Greenwich Theatre — Lewis Carroll’s classic characters spring to life in a new adaptation for the whole family, full of music, madness and mystery. £16/£11, until 1 June

28 May - I, Peasebottom and I, Caliban at Polka Theatre — Shakespeare for littluns as interpretations of two tales from the Bard come to Polka Theatre: A Midsummer Night's Dream and The Tempest. £12.50/£9, until 31 May

28 May - Primetime at Royal Court Theatre — Little writers take to the big stage with this series of imaginative new short plays, written by primary school children aged 8-11. £10/£5, until 31 May

The Testament of Mary at Barbican


1 May - Wolf Hall & Bring Up the Bodies at Aldwych Theatre — Royal Shakespeare Company present a new dramatisation of Hilary Mantel's award-winning novels, set in Tudor England. £10-£59, until 6 September

1 May - The Testament of Mary at Barbican — Fiona Shaw portrays the Virgin Mary as a mother struggling with the loss of a son, adapted from Colm Tóibín's Man Booker Prize-shortlisted novel of the same name. £16-£35, until 25 May

6 May - Yesterday’s Tomorrow at The Drayton Arms Theatre — Based on actual events, following two servicemen who come to the end of their tour of duty to realise their 'unlawful' feelings for each other. £12, until 31 May

6 May - Donkey Heart at Old Red Lion Theatre — Moscow, now. A small flat. One family, three generations, the same hangover. Nina Raine returns with a show about life after communism. £10-£16, until 31 May

6 May - Dead At Last, No More Air at Camden People’s Theatre — Marking two decades since the playwright’s death, Just a Must presents the English language premiere of this piece by Austrian writer Werner Schwab. £12/£10, until 17 May

6 May - Diary of a Madman at Jack Studio Theatre — He is a clerk; he feels himself to be a great man; others do not; between this gap his madness grows. Nikolai Gogol’s classic short story adapted for the stage. £10/£8, until 10 May

7 May - Spring Awakening at Richmond Theatre — Frank Wedekind's 1906 play about the intensity and confusion of youth caused riots when it first premiered and continues to ask pressing questions about how young people are shaped for their future. £11.90-£30.40, until 10 May

12 May - Le Gateaux Chocolat: Black at Soho Theatre — With a repertoire featuring Wagner, Purcell, Nina Simone and Whitney Houston, Black is a confessional portrait of Nigerian singer Le Gateau Chocolat’s life. £10-£20, until 24 May

14 May - The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance at Park Theatre — A tale from the American West?: Journey into the Wild West in this story of good versus evil, of law versus the gun, of one man versus Liberty Valance. £12-£19.50, until 22 June

14 May - Incognito at Bush Theatre — An autopsy, a brain surgeon, a neuropsychologist. Three interwoven stories explore the nature of identity and how we are defined by what we remember. £15/£10, until 21 June

20 May - John Ferguson at Finborough Theatre — Rediscovered and commissioned by the Finborough Theatre, John Ferguson is another of their series of rediscovered Irish dramas. £16/£14, until 14 June

20 May - En Un Lugar Del Quijote at Riverside Studios — Ron Lalá presents its own version of Don Quixote of La Mancha, through live music and spoken word. £20/£15, until 25 May

21 May - Johnny Got His Gun at Southwark Playhouse — Metal Rabbit brings the UK premiere of Dalton Trumbo’s anti-war novel to Southwark Playhouse in the form of Bradley Rand Smith’s Obie-winning adaptation. £10-£18, until 14 June

25 May - Spokesong at Finborough Theatre — Ulster playwright Stewart Parker's tale about a Belfast bike shop owner's attempts to keep afloat in a city being torn about, opens in the first London production in nearly 40 years. £18/£16, until 10 June

27 May - Quietly at Soho Theatre — We're back in Belfast for a meeting between two individuals with a shared violent past — a tale by writer Owen McCafferty. £12.50-£17.50, until 22 June

28 May - Between Us at Arcola Theatre — What do stand-up, being a proud father, therapy and adoption have in common? They’re all different ways of feeling good about yourself. But what happens if this is not enough? £12-£17, until 21 June

28 May - Clarence Darrow at The Old Vic — Kevin Spacey takes on the role of pioneering American lawyer Clarence Darrow, who is best known for the infamous 'Thrill Killers' trial in 1924. £10-£60, until 15 June

31 May - Hotel at The Shed — Secluded, isolated, the perfect desert island escape. Just what Robert and the family need. But beyond the white sand and beautiful sunsets, dark clouds gather. A storm is coming. £12-£20, until 2 August

Yellow Face at The Shed.


1 May - London 2012: Glasgow at Rosemary Branch — Two LOCOG employees are faced with a dilemma that could potentially spark a war in Korea in this comedic portrayal of the darker side of London 2012. £10/£8, until 5 May

1 May - Rites of War at Stratford Circus — Performed on a six metre high climbing wall, aerialists and dancers combine with music, film projections and news commentary in this collaboration between choreographers, directors and the BBC's Afghanistan Correspondent. £12/£10, until 3 May

5 May - Yellow Face at The Shed — Tony award-winner and Pulitzer Prize finalist David Henry Hwang, explores the impact race has had on the East Asian experience in America. £12-£20, until 24 May

6 May - Scottish Widows at White Bear Theatre — A new play by Oliver Award-winning playwright Grae Cleugh, Scottish Widows is a new series of monologues about widowhood. £14/£10, until 24 May

7 May - Waiting for Godot at Arcola —  Comedy duo Totally Tom bring contemporary character comedy to Beckett's absurdist play. £15-£20, until 14 June

7 May - Fleabag at Soho Theatre — Fancy a rather vague description? 'A rip-roaring account of some sort of a female living her sort of life'. There you go. £15-£22.50, until 25 May

7 May - Microcosm at Soho Theatre — Alex is happy, he just wishes those kids would stop hanging around his house. But they're just kids, not dangerous, right? £10-£15, until 25 May

7 May - Way Back at Pleasance Theatre — A new comedy set on Beachy Head, exploring the taboo themes of suicide, existential crises and... disabled toilets. £10/£8, until 11 May

10 May - Bakersfield Mist at Duchess Theatre — Inspired by true events, this new play by Stephen Sachs and starring Kathleen Turner asks what makes art and people truly authentic. £25-£85, until 30 August

12 May - Nordic Noir Double Take at Riverside Studios — London Toast Theatre presents a double bill of Nordic Noir: the first part an example of Nordic Noir drama and the second part a comedic examination of the genre. £20/£18, until 18 May

14 May - This May Hurt A Bit at St James Theatre — Stella Feehily’s new play explores one family’s journey through the NHS and asks: what is the prognosis for this much-loved, and fiercely debated, institution? £5-£34, until 21 June

21 May - Squirrels/The After Dinner Joke at Orange Tree Theatre — A double-bill, featuring a 1974 film about the nature of creativity and a satire about the politics of charity. £12/£10, until 7 June

22 May - Red at Blue Elephant Theatre — An evening of storytelling, rap, poetry, song and comedy, all inspired by the colour red. £10, until 23 May

London Wonderground at Southbank Centre


Now - The Drowned Man: A Hollywood Fable at Temple Studios — This isn't exactly a new starter, but Punchdrunk's immersive production set across four floors within the vast former Royal Mail sorting office in Paddingdon, has been recently extended until the end of June. We highly recommend it if you're up for some alternative theatre, we've been five times and are still trying to figure it all out. £37.50, until 29 June

1 May - Venice Preserv’d at Paynes & Borthwick wharf — Another immersive production, this time from theatre company Spectator's Guild transports you to 17th century Venice for a carnival parade with the enemy. £10-£45, until 8 June

2 May - Faulty Towers Dining Experience at Royal Albert Hall — RAH's Elgar Room is transformed into the Fawlty Towers restaurant, where diners will be haphazardly served a 70's style three-course meal by Basil, Sybil and Manuel. Only a third of the show is scripted so every dining experience is different. Would you care for...a rat? £67.30, until 8 May

6 May - Secret Theatre London — Lovers of surprises should enjoy the experience of Secret Theatre London, where you buy a ticket before finding out either the location or title of the production you'll be seeing. Your only assurances are that the production will be unusual and proceeds go to charity. £18.50, until 31 May

7 May - London Wonderground at Southbank Centre — You'll find cabaret, circus and general physical bamboozlement under Southbank Centre's Speigeltent throughout the summer. Pricing varies per show, until 28 September

14 May - Biding Time at Arcola Theatre — A musician, theatre director and film maker collaborate to tell the story of an aspiring singer-songwriter through live music, visuals, performance artists and...silent disco technology? £10/£8, 7.45pm

15 May - London Burlesque Festival at various venues — With names like The Schmoozer, Crown Jewels and Sexy Circus Sideshow, who could resist? Enjoy the most eclectic and diverse acts in burlesque, across this 10 day festival. Pricing varies per show, until 25 May

17 May - Alien: The Stage Adaptation at Leicester Square Theatre — Paranoid Dramatics returns to London with its unique stage adaptation of the sci-fi classic Alien — apparently described by one audience member as 'the single greatest thing I have ever been lucky enough to see'. £20, 3pm and 7pm

London Burlesque Festival.

What are you planning on seeing on stage in London this May? Seeing something not listed here? Tell us in the comments.

Last Updated 15 April 2014