Recent figures prove that Andrew Lloyd Webber was wrong about the effect of the Olympics on the West End. In an article published by the Telegraph, Webber was pleased to announce that his previous statement on BBC Radio 4 was incorrect. In December 2011, Webber said that this would be a “bloodbath of a summer” for the West End, but in actual fact his theatres were up 25% on this time last year.
Visitors to Lloyd Webber's theatres, belonging to The Really Useful Group, have increase during the Olympics and takings were up by £250,000 on previous weeks. He mentioned that visitors to Theatreland this year had a different demographic to previous years. Whereas before summer visitors tended to be from overseas, this year there has been an increase in patrons coming from the UK instead.
War Horse, which plays at the New London Theatre, has had a very successful summer so far, with very limited availability. The show continues to be jam-packed for the next few months and shows no sign of slipping from the top of our charts.
The Adelphi Theatre where Sweeney Todd has been on since March, actually closed for the duration of the Olympics in fear of not attracting audiences. The producers of the show now admit they’re sorry for not running it over the last two weeks.
Other news in the Theatreland is that of the closure of Chicago, which will be sorely missed after is 15-year run at several different theatres. Other departures include the West End’s first mainstream burlesque performance The Hurly Burly Show, which leaves the Duchess Theatre in a few weeks, and the much-enjoyed Blood Brothers announced for October. But, we’re still bubbling with excitement for the announcement of the new shows, and the West End is eagerly waiting for the arrival of fantastic new shows, including Baggage, which stars former Hear’Say singer Suzanne Shaw and possibly former Busted member James Bourne’s Loserville at the Garrick by early October.
These reported theatre figures are impressive, but why not still try and grab a bargain? London Theatre Direct has many theatre and restaurant packages that offer great value and a wonderful evening. Combine contemporary Asian cuisine at Tamarai with a trip to see Woman In Black at the Fortune Theatre to complete your visit to London this summer and find out for yourself what has been happening in Theatreland.