Musicals

In the pink: Luke MacGregor as Edward Cooper in Eyam at Shakespeare’s Globe

The Old Vic’s Sylvia may be the new Les Mis

29 September 2018 9:00 am

Sylvia, the Old Vic’s musical about the Pankhurst clan, has had a troubled nativity. Illness struck the cast during rehearsals.…

Aristocrats by Brian Friel at Donar Warehouse Credit: Johan Persson

Brian Friel’s Aristocrats should be called ‘Posh People Move House’

1 September 2018 9:00 am

Non-stop chatterbox and mystifyingly revered fabricator of sub-Chekovian paddywhackery, Brian Friel has received another production at the Donmar. His play…

Contains at least 15 laugh-out-loud moments: Genesis Inc. reviewed

7 July 2018 9:00 am

Listen to the crowd. I often delay passing judgment on a show until the audience delivers its verdict. This is…

A full-on Freudian Oklahoma! at Grange Park Opera

16 June 2018 9:00 am

Oh, what a beautiful morning! In Jo Davies’s production of Oklahoma! the audience spends the overture staring at the side…

Roger Allam as John Christie in David Hare’s The Moderate Soprano

A champion actor and fully paid-up member of the human race: Roger Allam interviewed

26 May 2018 9:00 am

On stage Roger Allam has covered pretty much everything in his four decades as an actor. Off it, he is a fully paid-up member of the human race, as Michael Henderson discovers

Large chunks felt lifted from The Archers: Nightfall reviewed

26 May 2018 9:00 am

The Bridge’s big summer show is Nightfall by prize-winning newcomer Barney Norris. Widowed Jenny wants her grown-up kids, Lou and…

Flop of the year? Royal Court's Instructions for Correct Assembly reviewed

28 April 2018 9:00 am

‘Hunt the Flop’, the Royal Court’s bizarre quest for dud plays, has found a candidate for this year’s overall prize.…

Missing in action: Cosmo Jarvis and Oliver Alvin-Wilson in The Twilight Zone at the Almeida

The latest astonishing achievement from the creators of War Horse

13 January 2018 9:00 am

The Twilight Zone, an American TV show from the early 1960s, reinvented the ghost story for the age of space…

As a musical, it’s overwhelming – politically, it’s an outrage: Hamilton reviewed

6 January 2018 9:00 am

It’s all about the rhythm. Hamilton is a musical that tells the story of America’s foundation through the medium of…

Huge audiences, gongs galore and Broadway awaits Everybody’s Talking About Jamie

2 December 2017 9:00 am

Everybody’s Talking About Jamie opened at the Sheffield Crucible in February for a standard three-week run. The show is based…

Bring on the dancing-girls: Follies at the Oliver

It’s hard to care about these geriatric bed-hoppers: Follies at the Olivier reviewed

16 September 2017 9:00 am

Stephen Sondheim’s Follies takes a huge leap into the past. It’s 1971 and we meet two middle-aged couples who knew…

Bin Laden the pin-up, a Tory singalong and comedy magic: Edinburgh Fringe roundup

19 August 2017 9:00 am

Brexit the Musical is a peppy satire written by Chris Bryant (not the MP, he’s a lawyer). Musically the show…

Adorably twerpish: Simon Bird as Philip in ‘The Philanthropist’

I can't praise this show highly enough: The Philanthropist reviewed

29 April 2017 9:00 am

Christopher Hampton’s 1968 play The Philanthropist examines the romantic travails of Philip, a cerebral university philologist, forced to choose between…

Star quality: Chaim Topol as Tevye

Why do people flock to Fiddler on the Roof – a musical about exile, pogroms and poverty?

18 February 2017 9:00 am

Why do people flock to a musical about exile, pogroms and poverty? Neil Armstrong investigates

Let’s dance: Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling in ‘La La Land’

Even with caveats it is still more wonderful than almost anything else: La La Land reviewed

14 January 2017 9:00 am

You will have registered the buzz surrounding La La Land and clocked its seven Golden Globe wins and 11 Bafta…

A treat to hum along to but don't ask me what it's about: Bowie's Lazarus reviewed

19 November 2016 9:00 am

One of David Bowie’s last works, Lazarus, is a musical based on Walter Tevis’s novel The Man Who Fell to…

Did Rodgers and Hammerstein intend Allegro for the theatre? Or for euthanasia treatment?

27 August 2016 9:00 am

‘European premiere of classic American musical’ is a phrase that deeply alarms the experienced playgoer. As I tootled along to…

Carly Bawden as Alice and Joshua Lacey as the White Rabbit

Damon Albarn’s wonder.land will not succeed at the National. It might work in Vegas

9 January 2016 9:00 am

Damon Albarn and Rufus Norris present a musical version of Alice in Wonderland. A challenging enterprise even if they’d stuck…

Please let's have more musicals like this Kiss Me, Kate at Opera North

10 October 2015 9:00 am

Opera North’s new production of Cole Porter’s masterwork Kiss Me, Kate has been so widely and justly praised that I…

Why I’m stepping down after 28 years as The Spectator pop critic

10 October 2015 9:00 am

Pop's place in culture has changed drastically. Marcus Berkmann explains why, after 27 years, it is time to step down as The Spectator's pop critic

Edinburgh Fringe highlights: world-class improv, Bible study and an hour with a gentle genius

29 August 2015 9:00 am

Showstopper! The Improvised Musical offers a brand new song-and-dance spectacular at every performance. It opens with a brilliantly chaotic piece…

A clear-eyed account of socialism: Paul Higgins and Stella Gonet in ‘Hope’ at the Royal Court

If you thought politics was boring, you should check out today’s political theatre

2 May 2015 9:00 am

How has political theatre fared during the coalition? Not very well, writes Lloyd Evans

Nicholas Hytner’s sod-you farewell: Rules for Living at the Dorfman reviewed

11 April 2015 9:00 am

Experts are concerned that Alan Ayckbourn’s plays may soon face extinction. Fewer than 80 of these precious beasts still exist…

The Heckler: Why I’m allergic to Stephen Sondheim

21 March 2015 9:00 am

I came out in a rash when I heard that Emma Thompson was to star in Stephen Sondheim’s Sweeney Todd…

Yanks buy stacks of tickets in the West End. Why is Made in Dagenham so rude to them?

15 November 2014 9:00 am

Go slow at Dagenham. The musical based on the film about a pay dispute in the 1960s starts as a…