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Where to See Stars on Stage in London in 2024

Nothing generates a buzz quite as much as a celebrity appearing in a play or musical. Some of our very best screen actors began their careers treading the boards, and their return to London theatre is an exciting opportunity to see them in their element, live on stage. London theatre in May steps up a notch, after the Olivier Award winners have been announced and you might even be able to brag about seeing them in one of the best theatre shows in London.

Below, we’ve put together our pick of the biggest stars in the West End this year. Book quickly if you spot an actor you’d love to see perform live because tickets will sell fast!

1. Steve Coogan in Dr Strangelove

Dr. Strangelove London
Dr. Strangelove London
Comedy legend Steve Coogan takes on iconic filmmaker Stanley Kubrick in this huge new production of Cold War satire Dr Strangelove. This world premiere marks the first time Kubrick's estate have allowed his work to be adapted for the stage, and Coogan portrays the weird and wonderful main character - a paranoid US General who kickstarts a nuclear war. It's one of the biggest openings of the year so book early to avoid missing out.
from £31.00
Opens October 2024

2. Tom Holland in Romeo and Juliet

Romeo and Juliet London
Romeo and Juliet London
Spider-Man star Tom Holland swaps Hollywood for the West End as he teams up with Olivier Award-winning director Jamie Lloyd for this huge staging of Shakespeare's tragedy. The tale of star-crossed lovers is more exciting and heart-stopping than ever, with Holland starring opposite Francesca Amewudah-Rivers as Juliet. This is indisputably one of the biggest theatre events of the year, with most tickets sold out - but keep an eye out for last-minute returns!

3. James Corden in The Constituent

The Constituent London
The Constituent London
After a successful decade heading up US chat shows and Hollywood films, James Corden is back in the UK and back on stage in a brand new play at the Old Vic. Starring opposite Motherland's Anna Maxwell Martin, Corden plays ex-serviceman Alex, whose life has spiralled out of control, in Joe Penhall's explosive play about an MP whose ideals are put to the test. Corden is an acclaimed stage actor - he appeared in The History Boys and One Man, Two Guvnors - and this is a fantastic homecoming.
from £26.40
Opens June 2024

4. Jason Donovan in The Rocky Horror Show

The Rocky Horror Show London
The Rocky Horror Show London
It's just a jump to the left... and then a step into the Dominion Theatre where, for three weeks only, Jason Donovan stars as Dr Frank'n'Furter! Donovan's easy charm and great stage presence has seen him gain - and keep - legions of fans from his Neighbours days, via Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat and beyond. This cult musical is a hugely fun night out and Donovan delivers a riotous performance as the infamous mad professor...
from £29.80
Opens September 2024

5. Jodie Whittaker in The Duchess

The Duchess London
The Duchess London
Broadchurch and Doctor Who star Jodie Whittaker returns to the stage for the first time in 12 years this autumn, starring in a sharp, contemporary version of visceral Jacobean tragedy The Duchess of Malfi. Whittaker is well-known for playing some of the most compelling television characters of the last two decades, and in Zinnie Harris' 21st century reworking she steps into the shoes of one of theatre's most iconic female roles.

Jodie Whittaker is not scheduled to perform on all dates. See production page for more details.
from £23.80
Opens October 2024

6. Ian McKellen in Player Kings

Player Kings London
Player Kings London
Ian McKellen has barely finished his run in critically acclaimed comedy Frank and Percy, and he has already announced his next West End project: a huge new version of Shakespeare's Henry IV, adapted and directed by Olivier Award winner Robert Icke. McKellen, who has already played iconic roles including Hamlet and Richard III, star as the egotistical and fickle knight Sir John Falstaff, in what is sure to be yet another inimitable performance.
from £20.50

7. Imelda Staunton in Hello, Dolly!

Hello, Dolly! London
Hello, Dolly! London
There are few roles that Imelda Staunton hasn't pulled off in her long and illustrious career. Whether she's starring as Queen Elizabeth II in The Crown, poisonous Professor Umbridge in Harry Potter or belting out incredible tunes in Sweeney Todd she is guaranteed to blow audiences away. Now, the four-time Olivier Award winner is making a match with Dolly Levi in this hotly anticipated revival of a Broadway classic in one of the biggest shows of 2024.
from £20.00
Save up to £19.50
Opens July 2024

8. John Lithgow in Giant

Giant London
Giant London
Emmy and Tony Award-winning US actor John Lithgow is turning his talents to one of children's literature's biggest names in this world premiere production. Starring as Roald Dahl, Lithgow portrays the controversial author over one afternoon, following backlash to an antisemitic article Dahl had written. This provocative play confronts the boundaries of opinion and harmful rhetoric, and how we look back on some of the most famous figures of the past.
from £19.00
Opens September 2024

9. Mark Strong in Oedipus

Oedipus London
Oedipus London
Stage and screen star Mark Strong has made a name for himself in Hollywood with blockbuster roles in Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, Kingsman: The Secret Service and Stardust, but this year theatregoers can get a taste of his classical drama training in Oedipus. Strong stars as the tragic Greek king, who is re-imagined as a modern-day politician in Robert Icke's acclaimed staging.
from £30.00
Opens October 2024

10. Adrian Dunbar in Kiss Me, Kate

Kiss Me, Kate London
Kiss Me, Kate London
His days of nicking bent coppers on Line of Duty might be over, but Adrian Dunbar is showing no signs of slowing down with his musical theatre debut! The popular actor, who won the nation's hearts as resolutely upstanding detective Ted Hastings in the BBC series, hits the stage in a huge revival of this Golden Age Broadway musical. Inspired by Shakespeare's The Taming of the Shrew, this is irrepressible feel-good, and a fantastic opportunity to see Dunbar in a whole new light.
from £25.00
Save up to £45.00

Can you meet West End stars at the stage door?

Stagedooring is a very popular tradition for London theatregoers and many actors are more than happy to meet fans after the show. It is a great way to get an autograph or photo with your favourite actor, and let them know how much you enjoyed their performance.

Some theatres may have restrictions on stage door meet and greets, and this is often communicated on their social channels or with a note pinned to the stage door. If you are unsure, ask the box office team and they will be happy to provide more information.

Actors are more likely to meet fans at the stage door after evening performances than matinees, because they will need to change, rest and eat between shows in the afternoon.

How do I meet actors at the stage door?

People usually stage door after they have attended a performance, and at very popular shows you may be asked to present your ticket to prove you attended that day. If you are planning to head to the stage door after a show:

Come prepared. Bring a pen (ideally a felt tip), something you would like signed such as a theatre programme, and have your phone camera ready.

Be prepared to wait for a while. Actors will be getting changed backstage, and sometimes hosting guests after a performance.

Listen to and follow directions from the theatre staff. Their priority is to ensure the stage door is well-managed and safe for everyone involved.

Be respectful of the people around you and do not try to skip the line, interrupt conversations or push others out of the way. Everyone is excited to meet their favourite actor but if the stage door gets rowdy or out of hand, it may end early.

Be respectful of the actor’s time and always say thank you! Meeting fans at the stage door is not part of an actor’s job, but many enjoy being able to meet fans and thank them for attending the show.

Be polite if the actor is unable to meet and greet. Sometimes actors simply aren’t able to come to the stage door and this will be communicated to anyone waiting as soon as possible.

Can you send cards or gifts to actors at the theatre?

Theatres have different policies for accepting gifts from fans. You may also be able to hand over a small card or letter at the stage door. If you would like to give an actor a gift, email the box office to ask before your visit and see what is allowed. Food items are less likely to be allowed for safety reasons.

What happens if an actor does not appear at a performance?

The appearance of any actor in a West End show is always subject to scheduling, illness, injury, holiday entitlement, or other unforeseen circumstances. When you book your tickets, you are doing so for the production rather than a specific actor, and therefore are not usually entitled to a refund or exchange unless the performance is cancelled.

Most shows have very talented understudies who will deliver amazing performances. You may even be able to brag in a few years' time that you saw a hot new rising star before they became popular!

Some shows advertise holiday dates for leading actors ahead of time, so always check these before booking. We have listed any holiday dates, or other dates that celebrities are not performing, on the production page.
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