What's On Stage In London: October 2014

Ruth Hargreaves
By Ruth Hargreaves Last edited 108 months ago
What's On Stage In London: October 2014

Welcome to October’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.

Best of Be Festival at Barbican Centre


8 October: Best of BE FESTIVAL at Barbican Centre — Three highlights from this year’s BE (Birmingham European) FESTIVAL, which champions daring theatre-makers from across the continent, are showcased together at Barbican's Pit theatre. £16, until 8 Nov

13 October: Afrovibes at The Albany — Celebrating 20 years since the end of Apartheid, Afrovibes will feature music, theatre, dance, photography and film, reflecting on what it is to be part of 21st century South Africa. Until 18 October

13 October: London Horror Festival at Etcetera Theatre  — Back for a fourth year, London Horror Festival celebrates horror in the performing arts with a daily programme of theatre, comedy, performance and spoken word. Until 31 October

Four Minutes Twelve Seconds is on stage at Hampstead Downstairs. Details below


2 October: Four Minutes Twelve Seconds at Hampstead Downstairs — Jack is smart and outgoing, but one incident can change everything. In a world where smartphones are ubiquitous, James Fritz’s drama throws a light on the sorts of insidious opportunities new technology offers. £12/£10, until 1 November

4 October: East is East at Trafalgar Studios — Jane Horrocks stars in this play, made famous by the 1999 film, about an English mother whose loyalties are divided between her strict Muslim husband and the free will of her children. £29.50-£69.50, until 3 January

6 October: Warde Street at Park Theatre — A political drama set in the aftermath of the July 7th 2005 London bombings, Warde Street follows an ordinary man who tries to start over. £19.50/£16, until 26 October

8 October: The Distance at Orange Tree Theatre — Relationships are hard: long-term ones harder still. When Bea returns home after five years abroad having made a bold choice about her life, old friends struggle to support her. £10-£20, until 8 November

14 October: Free Fall at Pleasance Islington — From emerging writer Vinay Patel, Free Fall follows two strangers as they meet at the Dartford Crossing at midnight; one settled in for a night supervising the toll machines, the other intent on suicide. £12/£10, until 1 November

23 October: Grand Guignol at Southwark Playhouse — Theatre du Grand Guignol opens its doors in Paris, 1903. The plays are rife with madness and murder and the public love them, but when the boundaries between theatre and truth begin to blur, things threaten to get a little gory. £10-£18, until 22 November

Oh I Can't Be Bothered is on stage at Soho Theatre. Details below


1 October: Oh, I Can’t Be Bothered at Soho Theatre — Award-winning theatre company RashDash return with a show about two inseparable friends that combines physicality, text and song. £10-£15, until 19 October

6 October: The Man Jesus at The Lyric — Travel back two thousand years to witness key moments in the life of ‘the man Jesus’, through the eyes of the people who knew him. £20-£45, 7.30pm

7 October: The Proposal/To Be A Wife at Hen and Chickens Theatre — A double bill of comedy on the theme of same-sex marriages and LGBT rights. £9, until 11 October

8 October: Alice on the Underground at Chickenshed Theatre — A spirited London teenager running away from home befriends a breakdancing, busking rabbit, who takes her on a journey on the Underground, which gets curioser and curioser. £10/£8, until 25 October

8 October: Milk Milk Lemonade at Ovalhouse — A comedy show about a teenage boy, Emory, growing up on a farm with little but a chicken for company...or so his Nanna thinks. Little does she know about his relationship with Elliot, the boy down the road - and it's not the sort of relationship she would approve of. £10/£6, until 25 October

9 October: Going Straight at Soho Theatre — In this sketch comedy, gay virgin Rob and unstoppable womaniser Gabe really need to change their hedonistic ways so they join a strange religious cult but their new found god has some very weird rules. Probably not one for the easily offended. £10, until 18 October

9 October: Stowaway at Shoreditch Town Hall — As a plane descends into Heathrow, a stowaway immigrant from India drops to the ground from its underbelly, landing in the local B&Q car park. This is the story of that immigrant, a man who finds himself away from everything he knows. £11, until 10 October

21 October: Spine at Soho Theatre — Spine charts the explosive friendship between a ferocious, wise-cracking teenager, Amy, and the elderly East End widow, Glenda, who wants to save her from the Tory scrapheap.  £15/£12.50, until 2 November

The Five & the Prophecy of Prana at Barbican © Hugo Glendinning


7 October: Ballet Revolución at Peacock Theatre — The cast of 19 dancers perform a fast-paced blend of contemporary dance, ballet, street dance and hip hop, with a soundtrack encompassing Bruno Mars, Usher, Beyoncé, David Guetta, J-Lo, Prince and Rihanna. £15-£45, until 25 October

8 October: Lord of the Flies at Sadler’s Wells — Performed in London for the first time, Lord of the Flies is a new dance production, inspired by William Golding’s classic dystopian novel. The action is transferred from deserted island to deserted theatre. £10-£45, until 11 October

20 October: A Harlem Dream at Young Vic — A timeless story of forbidden love and betrayal is told through popping, locking, lindy hopping and burlesque. £10-£19.50, until 1 November

22 October: The Five & the Prophecy of Prana at Barbican — Japanese Manga artist Akio Tanaka joins the award-winning team behind Pied Piper for an explosive narrative dance work integrating hip-hop, Manga and martial arts. £16-£32, until 2 November

23 October: Dance Till Dawn at Aldwych Theatre — Set in 1940s LA, this dance romance unfolds between a beautiful starlet and her handsome lover, embodied by Flavia Cacace and Vincent Simone. £45, until 3 January

28 October: Jump at Peacock Theatre — Take a pair of hapless burglars, put them into the home of a very unusual family, then mix everything with gravity-defying dance and martial arts. £15-£38, until 15 November

29 October: The Lonely Room at Blue Elephant Theatre — Eloise Carles and Flavia Bertram perform a mime duet, telling the story of two women trapped in the in-between of life. £7.50/£6, until 31 October

30 October: Siena at Southbank Centre — La Veronal dance company got inspired by the city of Siena for this show which focuses on art and the human body. £20/£12, 7.30pm

30 October: JOHN at National Theatre — This is a new verbatim dance-theatre work by Lloyd Newson, Artistic Director of DV8 Physical Theatre. Expect a mix of dance movements and spoken word. £15-£35, until 13 January

Made in Dagenham at Adelphi Theatre

Opera and Musicals

1 October: Damn Yankees at Landor Theatre — When a devilish dealmaker offers Joe Boyd the chance to help his beloved Washington Senators win the Pennant race against those Damn Yankees, Joe takes it. But as the Senators' stats soar, Joe realises he's losing his wife and looks for a loophole. Enter sizzling-hot temptress Lola, a charter member of the Home-wreckers Hall of Fame. £20, until 8 November

2 October: The Girl of the Golden West at London Coliseum — Set in the American Wild West during the Californian gold rush, Puccini’s opera follows the lives of saloon-bar owner Minnie and a community of miners who struggle to cope with the harsh realities of survival in a bleak environment. £87.50-£115, until 1 November (please note the ENO website is currently making visitors enter a queue as there's heavy traffic due to the Sweeney Todd announcement)

3 October: Altar Boyz at Greenwich Theatre — Pop act Altar Boyz are in New York for the last night of their Raise the Praise tour - with songs including Girl You Make Me Wanna Wait and Jesus Called Me On My Cell Phone - but will their piousness end in the big city? £12.50-£21, until 18 October

4 October: The Scottsboro Boys at Garrick Theatre — This musical brings to life the true story of nine young black men, in a Kafkaesque legal case that made history. In 1931 Alabama, the boys, though clearly innocent, were accused of raping two white women, tried and convicted quickly by the authorities. This brilliant play charts their struggles to get the convictions overturned. £18.50-£106.25, until 21 February

4 October: Sunny Afternoon at Harold Pinter Theatre — The rise of British band The Kinks is profiled, from their beginnings on a dead end street to gobal fame. £15-£75, until 29 November

6 October: Marry Me A Little at St James Studio — Two ex-lovers, on separate Saturday nights, are alone in the flat they once shared, remembering the highs and lows of their relationship. Each is visited by memories of the other, as they contemplate what made them fall in love, stay in love and ultimately fall out of love. £12-£18.50, until 11 October

9 October: Memphis at Shaftesbury Theatre — In 1950s Memphis, a young man falls for a beautiful club singer and dreams of helping her musical career take off. It's set at a time when rock 'n' roll, blues and gospel music were shaking up the mainstream.  £10-£90, until 28 March

9 October: Made in Dagenham at Adelphi Theatre — Gemma Arterton takes on the role of Rita O'Grady, a 1968 worker at the Ford car plant in Dagenham. When it's announced that Rita and her co-workers' pay will be cut, Rita finds herself leading her colleagues against Ford, and the union supposed to support them. £15-£69.50, until 28 March

10 October: Neville’s Island at Duke of York’s Theatre — In this comedy, four out-of-shape businessmen find themselves shipwrecked in the Lake District when a team-building exercise gets out of hand, with one sausage to share between. Squabbling ensues. £15-£45, until 3 January

10 October: War Correspondents at Stratford Circus — While reporting the outbreak of war, a journalist is held at gunpoint, caught in the no-man's land between two nations. £8/6, until 11 October

16 October: The Marriage of Figaro at London Coliseum — Mozart’s opera whisks us through the events of one crazy day as Figaro, the Count’s valet, tries to wed Susanna, the Countess’s maid, before their philandering master can bed her first. £94-£125, until 23 November (please note the ENO website is currently making visitors enter a queue as there's heavy traffic due to the Sweeney Todd announcement)

19 October: Soviet Zion at The Jewish Museum — The story of an American family and a Ukrainian family who both move to Siberia in 1939 to participate in a movement to create a Yiddish utopia. When they arrive, the reality isn't what they expected, and they have to make sacrifices to achieve the freedom they want. £18/£16, until 20 October

19 October: Blind at New Diorama Theatre — What influences young people today in the way they behave? UK beat-boxing champion Grace Savage explores the theme. £12/£10, until 20 October

22 October: The Anatomy of Melancholy at TestBed1 — An opera about depression, genetics and renaissance medicine. Definitely worth trying if you fancy an alternative approach to opera. £12.50 until 25 October

29 October: La Boheme at London Coliseum — Experience Puccini's great operatic love story, tracing the doomed relationship between the impoverished poet Rodolfo and his seamstress girlfriend Mimì. £94-£125, until 6 December (please note the ENO website is currently making visitors enter a queue as there's heavy traffic due to the Sweeney Todd announcement)

The Way Back Home at Southbank Centre


8 October: Grandad, Me and Teddy Too at Polka Theatre — Polka's Adventure Theatre is transformed into a magical winter garden, to follow this adventure story about the special place grandparents have in young children’s lives. £11.50/£9, until 8 February

9 October: How Nigeria Became: A Story, And A Spear That Didn’t Work at Unicorn Theatre — Commemorating the centenary of Nigeria as part of Black History Month, this is a creative insight into Nigeria's beginnings in 1914, for ages 8+. £10-£16, until 9 November

25 October: That Catherine Bennett Show at Southbank Centre — An artist and her nine year old niece want to invent a new kind of pop star. A show about family activism, children's rights and believing in your own power to change the world... even if you're nine. £10/£5, until 28 October

28 October: Psst! Secrets of a White Rabbit at Barbican — There's a rabbit on the loose, but it's no ordinary bunny. Conjured out of tissue paper by a duo of gentle clowns, let him guide you through a music-filled fantasy land where even the simplest things can become grandiose.. £8, until 4 November

29 October: The Way Back Home at Southbank Centre — A space adventure based on a popular book for audiences aged four to eight. When a boy discovers a single-propeller aeroplane in his closet, he does what any young adventurer would do: flies into outer space. £14/£7, until 2 November

30 October: Nosferatu at Unicorn Theatre — Unconventional French theatre-makers, Bob Théâtre, return to the Unicorn for a Halloween full of humour, horror and an inventive use of light bulbs. £10-£16, until 2 November

Here Lies Love at National Theatre


1 October: iAm at Kensal House Community — A fast-paced, interactive show about our attachment to technology. Mixing immersive theatre, interactive games and a futuristic scenario, the play addresses big subjects like morality and community in a digital age. £9/£6, until 25 October

1 October: Here Lies Love at National Theatre — Fresh from New York, Here Lies Love by David Byrne and Fatboy Slim transforms Dorfman Theatre into a pulsating nightclub to trace the astonishing journey of Imelda Marcos, First Lady of the Philippines, from her meteoric rise to power to descent into infamy and disgrace. £15-£45, until 8 January

21 October: Sweeney Todd at Harrington’s Pie and Mash Shop — This is currently sold out, but with a promise of more tickets to be released, it's worth knowing about this site-specific version of Sweeney Todd, taking place in a pie and mash shop. £13-£20, until 29 November

29 October: Who Do We Think We Are at Southwark Playhouse — What makes you the person you are today? In 2013 a group of older actors met in a rehearsal room to explore their family histories. A remarkable collection of stories emerged, here fused with live music. £10-£18, until 15 November

'Tis Pity She's A Whore at Sam Wanamaker Playhouse


1 October: The Taming of the Shrew at Jack Studio Theatre — Immersion Theatre transport one of Shakespeare’s controversial comedies to sixties London, as suitors vie to woo and wed the wealthy daughters of gangland powerhouse Baptista Minola. £14/£11, until 18 October

3 October: Henry IV at Donmar Warehouse — Phyllida Lloyd returns to Donmar for a new version of Shakespeare's history play  £7.50-£35, until 29 November

8 October: Uncle Vanya at St James Theatre — Anya Reiss re-imagines this tragicomedy, where a respected professor returns to his farmland which has been managed without him for many years, bringing with him a new, beautiful, young wife. But their arrival turns the lives of the residents and his family upside down. £15-£49.50, until 8 November

10 October: The Cherry Orchard at Young Vic — Director Katie Mitchell returns to the Young Vic to direct a new version (by Olivier Award winner Simon Stephens) of Anton Chekhov’s great play. £10-£35, until 29 November

10 October: Our Town at Almedia Theatre — Award-winning US actor-director David Cromer directs an intimate version of Thornton Wilder’s iconic American play about two people who fall in love, marry and live out their lives in a small town that serves as an allegory for American life. £9-£36, until 29 November

15 October: The Rivals at Arcola Theatre — This brand new production adds modern touches to Sheridan’s late Restoration comedy masterpiece. £12-£18, until 15 November

23 October: ’Tis Pity She’s A Whore at Sam Wanamaker Playhouse — Compassionate and disturbing, John Ford’s great story of doomed love enters the one of the most challenging moral territories of all: incest. £10-£60, until 7 December

29 October: Romeo and Juliet at National Theatre’s temporary venue — A swift, contemporary version of Shakespeare's infamous tragedy. £12/£8, until 14 November

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

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Last Updated 24 September 2014