What’s opening in theatre’s this month (January 2024)
Posted on 1 January 2024
It’s the start of a new week, a new month, and a new year, and we have a whole host of new shows to look forward to!
With themes of censorship, family estrangements, blackmail, and revolution, 2024 is shaping up to be a very diverse year for London theatre indeed, and it’s only just getting started! If the remaining eleven months are as exciting as the first (and with The Devil Wears Prada, Mean Girls the Musical and MJ the Musical coming up this year, we feel like they might) then we have a real doozy of a year ahead of us. Take a look at what’s on in the West End this month and add them to your 2024 bucket list! (or bucket and spade list in the case of The Hills of California’s postcard to Blackpool…)
Cruel Intentions: The 90s Musical (11 January)
New year, same fear that time is passing at an alarming rate? Then let Cruel Intentions transport you back to the comforting world of the 90s. The sexy yet sinister show is jam packed with the decades much loved anthems including TLC ‘No Scrubs’, *NSYNC ‘Bye Bye Bye,’ and R.E.M. ‘Losing My Religion.’ (Just listing the songs has made us nostalgic for the squeaks of our Argos inflatable sofa as we chilled listening to these tunes).
Popular, powerful, and pretty stinking rich, deadly stepsibling duo, Sebastian and Katyhryn, are used to getting what they want. No matter the cost. In a cold-hearted bet, Kathryn forces her brother to seduce the headmaster’s daughter Annette, a naïve and squeaky-clean girl who is adamant to remain a virgin until marriage. Weaving a web of temptation in the hopes to trap the innocent teenager, the pair hatch a plan to destroy her and anyone else who dares to get in their way. However, when they find themselves falling for their own lies, their actions turn the entire high school on its head and the consequences are explosive.
Cirque du Soleil: Alegría (11 January)
The internationally renowned company make their much-anticipated return to the West End! With scorching batons and dazzling acrobatic opulence, the 25th anniversary of Alegría: In a New Light guarantees to make those dark January nights that much brighter!
The once-magnificent kingdom of Alegría is in free fall after the death of their King. The countries youth seek hope and resurgence in their new landscape; however, the old order is adamant that the realms tired traditions and strict rules are upheld. A desire for change is growing in the streets, and soon even the court jester is vying for the throne. The empires residents must bind together to defy the status quo and bring joy to the world once again.
Accompanied by a thunderous live score, Alegría: In a New Light, is an immersive experience infused with a magical spirit, thrilling acrobatics, surreal costumes, and playful humour.
The King and I (20 January)
Whistle a happy tune, The King and I is returning to the West End! Rodgers and Hammerstein's much-loved musical epitomises the golden age of theatre, and with its touching themes of love and understanding, its easy to see why this masterpiece has stood the test of time.
Be transported into a world of rich traditions, complex relationships, and political intrigue, as we follow schoolteacher Anna (Call the Midwife’s Helen George) and her unlikely friendship with the King of Siam (Broadway legend Darren Lee).
East meets West in this celebration of human connection. When widowed British schoolteacher Anna is hired by the King of Siam in his attempts to modernise his country, it isn’t just the kids that are taught a lesson or two. After a rocky start to their working relationship, Anna eventually reaches an understanding with the stubborn king. A tale beyond its years, The King and I teaches us that love can transcend the greatest of differences.
Set to one of the finest scores ever written, including the timeless ‘Getting to Know You’ and ‘Shall We Dance’ - the musical features a company of over 50 world-class performers alongside a full-scale orchestra. It certainly hits all the right notes with us!
A Mirror (22 January)
Wedding season has begun early! You have been invited to celebrate the nuptials of Leyla and Joel, now would the congregation please stand and swear the Oath of Allegiance…
Interrogating censorship, authorship and free speech, A Mirror is a new, explosive play from critically acclaimed playwright Sam Holcroft. Starring Jonny Lee Miller (Elementary, Trainspotting) and Tanya Reynolds (Sex Education), the play within a wedding is an immersive experience that leaves the congregation in the heart of the action. In a story where creativity clashes with corruption, the question arises: who gets to determine what qualifies as art and what stands as truth?
After a sold out run at the Almeida Theatre, the thought-provoking theatre production has had audiences falling in love. The West End transfer is sure to sell out, RSVP yes now to avoid future heartbreak.
The Hills of California (27 January)
Start your new year with a trip to the seaside! Continuing their collaboration after the critically acclaimed, award-winning success of The Ferryman, Jez Butterworth, and Sam Mendes, team up once more to present The Hills of California.
Blackpool. 1976. The beaches are teaming with blistered, sunburnt holidaymakers as they capitalise on the highest recorded temperatures in recent history. Ice creams melt in the blaze and donkeys trudge down the sand as they transport chubby toddlers on their backs. Local businesses are booming. Hotels are at full capacity and fish and chip shops are low on vinegar. However, not all residents of the seaside town are enjoying the sunshine. Far away from the seafront, the Webb sisters are trapped in a dilapidated guest house, caring for their mother who lies dying upstairs.
‘This house. It’s called “Sea View”. It’s just I’ve looked out of every window, and you can’t. You can’t see the sea.’ Butterworth’s emotionally charged script explores how binding family ties can be. The powerful new play is already slated as the most highly-anticipated productions of 2024, don’t miss your chance to see it.