SeatPlan Logo
Bleak Expectations hero image
Bleak Expectations hero image
Bleak Expectations hero image
    [a] joyously silly Dickensian romp
    English eccentricity at its madcap best
    The Daily Telegraph
Book Tickets, Earn Rewards - Find Out More!

Bleak Expectations Tickets

Join Pip Bin and his friends on a hilarious Dickensian adventure, featuring guest appearances from some of your favourite comedians.

A star-studded Dickensian parody

What would happen if Charles Dickens drank too much gin, lived for another 150 years, and wrote a West End play? Find out in Bleak Expectations at the Criterion Theatre, the daft new comedy that sends up the best of Victorian melodrama.

Join orphan Pip Bin, his sisters Pippa and Poppy, and his best friend Harry Biscuit as they outrun the clutches of scheming Mr. Gently Benevolent. Will virtue win over evil? Will depressing boarding schools and devilish plotting be foiled once and for all? And most importantly, will there be a happy ending with lots of romance?

The Bleak Expectations play is a fantastically silly adaptation of Mark Evans’ award-winning BBC Radio 4 series.

If an ultimate parody of Dickens’ greatest hits wasn’t enough, each week, familiar faces from the world of showbiz will take to the stage. Tom Allen, Adjoa Andoh, Jo Brand, Alexander Armstrong, Stephen Fry, Sue Perkins, and Lee Mack are just some of the stars donning bonnets, tails, and dastardly disguises in this madcap comedy.

This uproarious and witty show is at the Criterion Theatre for a strictly limited season, so book Bleak Expectations tickets now to join the fun.

Sorry this show closed 13 August 2023, we recommend these similar productions.

Performance dates:
02 Sep 2023 - 13 Aug 2023
Running time:
2 hours and 15 minutes including an interval.
Criterion Theatre (See map)
Age recommendation:
Best for age 10+
Audience Notes:
Please note that the appearance of any performer cannot be guaranteed, and is always subject to illness, injury and statutory holiday entitlement.

Best Seats

SeatPlan Recommends: This hilarious farce is best enjoyed in the centre of the Stalls, where you can take in the full set, with all of its surprises, and see the visual gags up close. If you prefer to sit with a higher view of the stage, the front rows of the Dress Circle do not feel distant, so you won’t miss any of the chaos that unfolds!

  • from
  • Latest Audience Reviews

    Laughed all the way through. There was so much laughter coming form the audience that you missed... More

    katiel16's avatar
    katiel16 Top 10 reviewer 13 Aug 2023

    Great show anyway - add Stephen Fry and you have perfection. Unlike other narrators who tweaked t... More

    katiel16's avatar
    katiel16 Top 10 reviewer 13 Aug 2023

    Based on the gothic novel by Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray, this adaptation, which had... More

    AndrewH306's avatar
    AndrewH306 Top 100 reviewer 01 Aug 2023

    Stephen Fry is a God. So great at long last to see this theatre nearly at capacity, and Mr Fry go... More

    katiel16's avatar
    katiel16 Top 10 reviewer 13 Aug 2023

    This is my second visit, and may not be my last. Same show. Different narrator.Just as funny. For... More

    AndrewH306's avatar
    AndrewH306 Top 100 reviewer 19 Jul 2023

    Written by Mark Evans and based on his BBC R4 award winning series, the first stage version premi... More

    AndrewH306's avatar
    AndrewH306 Top 100 reviewer 17 Jul 2023
    Your basket is empty.