A haunting tale
Britain’s oldest dance company, Rambert, is showcasing its classic GhostDances alongside other works at Sadler’s Wells for the first time in 14 years (16-20 May; p. 52). First performed in 1981, Christopher Bruce’s eerie contemporary work is on a UK tour and will be performed at Sadler’s as part of a triple bill. Ghost Dances is a tribute to victims of oppression in South America set to Latin American folk beats. It sees the daily lives of ordinary people depicted through joyful, compassionate dances, interrupted by death in the form of ghost dancers dressed in rags and skeleton masks. The triple bill also features Didy Veldman’s The 3 Dancers – a true tale of passion and betrayal that inspired the Picasso painting of the same name.
Faulty Towers: The Dining Experience
Seventies-style dining and interactive comedy combine in this theatrical experience based on the cult TV comedy. Thur-Sat 7pm; Sat 1pm; Sun 1pm & 6pm. Tickets £59-£69. www.faultytowers-uk.com. The Torquay Suite Theatre, Amba Hotel Charing Cross, Strand, WC2N 5HX. T: 0845-154 4145. E8. Station: Charing Cross. Kingsway Hall Hotel, 66 Great Queen St, WC2B 5BX. D8. Station: Holborn.
The Goat, or who is Sylvia?
Martin, a middle-aged, successful architect, has a perfect life until it’s thrown into turmoil when he confides in his best friend that he has fallen in love with a goat. Mon-Sat 7.30pm; Thur & Sat 3pm (no show 29 May-3 Jun). Tickets £15-£99. www.trh.co.uk. Theatre Royal Haymarket, Haymarket, SW1Y 4HT. T: 020-7930 8800. E7. Station: Piccadilly Circus.
From 31 May: Two men, unlikely friends, stagger through crippling prison work, breaking free in nights of playful escapism. This drama draws on Robben Island where Nelson Mandela was imprisoned. Check for times. Tickets £12-£20. www.southwarkplayhouse.co.uk. Southwark Playhouse, 77- 85 Newington Causeway, SE1 6BD. T: 020-7407 0234. Off map. Station: Elephant and Castle.
Life of Galileo
From 6 May: An out-of-this-world production of Brecht’s masterpiece on a wrap-around set, directed by BAFTA-winner Joe Wright. Mon-Sat 7.30pm; Wed & Sat 2.30pm. Tickets £10-£38. www.youngvic.org. Young Vic, 66 The Cut, SE1 8LZ. T: 020-7922 2922. F9. Station: Waterloo.
Fast-moving and farcical, this comedy was written by the French playwright Molière and first performed in 1668 in Paris. This new adaptation, by Sean Foley and Phil Porter, sees Griff Rhys Jones take the lead role as Harpagon, a stingy widower who is more concerned with money than he is with his children. Mon-Sat 7.30pm; Wed & Sat 2.30pm. Tickets £15-£87.50. www.garricktheatre.org. Garrick Theatre, 2 Charing Cross Rd, WC2H 0HH. T: 0844- 482 9673. E7/8. Station: Leicester Square.
A murderer strikes at a party in Agatha Christie’s long-running whodunnit. Please check for times and prices. www.the-mousetrap. co.uk. St Martin’s Theatre, West St, WC2H 9NZ. T: 0844- 499 1515. D7. Station: Leicester Square.
From 2 May: Nell Gwynn charts the rise of an unlikely heroine, from her roots in Coal Yard Alley to her success as Britain’s most celebrated actress, and her hard-won place in the heart of the king. But at a time when women are second-class citizens, can her charm and spirit protect her from the dangers of the court? And at what cost? Check for times. Tickets £5-£45. www.shakespearesglobe.com. Shakespeare’s Globe, 21 New Globe Walk, SE1 9DT. T: 020-7401 9919. E10. Station: Blackfriars.
Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour
From 9 May: Following sold-out seasons at the National Theatre, Edinburgh Festival Fringe and a UK tour, this National Theatre of Scotland play from the creator of Billy Elliot is an uplifting story of six Catholic choir girls from Oban let loose in Edinburgh for a day. It’s funny, heartbreaking and rude. Please check for times. Tickets £19-£79. www.dukeofyorks theatre.co.uk. Duke of York’s Theatre, 104 St Martin’s Lane, WC2N 4BG. T: 0844-871 7627. E8. Station: Leicester Square.
The Play That Goes Wrong
Hilarious slapstick comedy about a drama society staging a murder mystery. What could possibly go wrong? Tue-Sat 7.30pm; Sat 2.30pm; Sun 3pm & 7pm. Tickets £22-£67.50. www.theplaythatgoes wrong.com. Duchess Theatre, 3-5 Catherine St, WC2B 5LA. T: 0844- 482 9672. D8. Station: Covent Garden.
The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui
Chicago! It’s a city of jazz and gangsters, in a time of Prohibition and poverty. Among the murk of the Great Depression, there’s room for a small-time crook like Arturo Ui (Lenry Henry) to make a name for himself. Ui and his henchmen just want to look after you, to offer protection for workers, for jobs, for businesses. There’s nothing to fear, right? But a little bribery here, some harmless corruption there, and soon something much more dangerous takes hold… Mon-Sat 7.30pm; Thur & Sat 2.30pm. Tickets £10-£40. www.donmarwarehouse.com. Donmar Warehouse, 41 Earlham St, WC2H 9LX. T: 0844-871 7624.
D8. Station: Covent Garden.
Tick Tick‚ Boom!
3-27 May: An aspiring composer questions his life choices on the eve of his 30th birthday in Jonathan Larson’s autobiographical rock musical. The Tony Award-winner tells the story of the sacrifices he made to achieve his big break in theatre. Set in 1990, this compelling story of personal discovery embraces the ideal of holding on to your dreams through life’s most difficult challenges. Containing 14 songs, 10 characters, three actors and a band, this play takes you on the journey that led to a Broadway blockbuster. Tue-Sat 7.45pm (except 9 May); Thur & Sat 3.15pm. Tickets £14.50-£18. www.parktheatre.co.uk. Park Theatre, Clifton Terrace, Finsbury Park, N4 3JP. T: 020-7870 6876. Off map.
Station: Finsbury Park.
Set in a film studio in New York, this play follows the life of a young woman who has an urgent story to tell. But here, people are products, films mean money and sex sells. And the rights to your life can be a dangerous commodity to exploit. This neighbourhood theatre is worth making a visit to. Please check for times. Tickets £10-£39.50. www.almeida.co.uk. Almeida Theatre, Almeida St, N1 1TA. T: 020-7359 4404. Off map. Station: Highbury & Islington.
From 18 May: Twins Sebastian and Viola are shipwrecked on Illyria, separated and believing each other to be dead. Beside herself with grief, Viola disguises herself as a boy and goes into the service of Duke Orsino. The duke, madly in love with Countess Olivia, sends Viola to woo on his behalf. Please check for times. Tickets £5-£45. www.shakespearesglobe.com. Shakespeare’s Globe, 21 New Globe Walk, SE1 9DT. T: 020-7401 9919. E10. Station: Blackfriars.
Ugly Lies the Bone
The European premiere of a hard-hitting play about the trauma of fighting on the frontline. Directed by Indhu Rubasingham – the artistic director of north London’s Tricycle Theatre – Ugly Lies the Bone is a topical drama about a soldier scarred from Afghanistan. Please check for times. Tickets £15-£50. www.nationaltheatre.org.uk. Lyttelton Theatre, National Theatre, South Bank, SE1 9PX. T: 020-7452 3000. E8. Station: Waterloo.
To 27 May: A lighthouse stands on the remote East Coast of America during World War II. When Christopher’s father’s plane is shot down, he is sent to live there with an aunt he has never met and her mysterious Japanese housekeeper. Soon, he hears music through the walls. Is his imagination getting the better of him, or are the ghosts warning of real danger? Soon the whispers become something louder. Mon-Sat 7.30pm; Thur & Sat 2.30pm. Tickets £15-£39.50. www.theother palace.co.uk. The Other Palace, 12 Palace St, SW1E 5JA. T: 0844-264 2140. F7. Station: Victoria.
Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?
To 27 May: Starring Imelda Staunton ( Gypsy, Sweeney Todd); Conleth Hill ( Game of Thrones, The Producers); Luke Treadaway ( The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time) and Imogen Poots in her West End debut. Martha has invited new professor Nick and his wife Honey to her home with George for after-party drinks. The young couple are drawn into George and Martha’s toxic games until the
Stomp has used over 30,000 brooms, 20,000 bins, 10,000 drumsticks and 50,000 boxes of matches
evening climaxes in a moment of devastating truth-telling. Mon-Sat 7.30pm; Wed & Sat 2.30pm. Tickets £15-£90. www.whosafraidofvirginia woolf.co.uk. Harold Pinter Theatre, Panton St, SW1Y 4DN. T: 0844- 871 7622. E7. Station: Piccadilly Circus.
The Wipers Times
To 13 May: Ian Hislop and Nick Newman’s stage adaptation of their award-winning BBC film tells the true and extraordinary story of the satirical newspaper created in the mud and mayhem of the Somme, interspersed with comic sketches and spoofs. Mon-Sat 7.30pm; Thur & Sat 2.30pm & 7.30pm. Check for prices. www.arts theatrewestend.co.uk. Arts Theatre, 6-7 Great Newport St, WC2H 7JB. T: 020-7836 8463. E7. Station: Leicester Square.
The Woman in Black
Adapted from Susan Hill’s novel, this play follows a lawyer who visits a remote house after a woman’s death. Tue-Sat 8pm; Tue & Thur 3pm (not 23 May); Sat 4pm. Tickets £19.50-£60. www.thewomanin black.com. Fortune Theatre, Russell St, WC2B 5HH. T: 0844- 871 7626. D8. Station: Covent Garden.
From 13 May: It’s 1980s Berlin. The Cold War rages and the world sits at a crossroads between capitalism and communism. On the border between East and West, a young soldier (John Boyega) and the love of his life are desperately trying to build a better future for their child. But the cost of escaping poverty is high in this searing tale of the people society leaves behind (p. 44). Please check for times. Tickets £12-£60. www.old victheatre.com. The Old Vic, The Cut, SE1 8NB. T: 0844-871 7628. F9. Station: Waterloo.