You can’t ‘do’ London without at least one trip to the theatre, and the National Theatre’s ample selection of sell-out shows should be your first port of call. Everything from family frolics and Shakespearean dramas are on offer throughout this year’s spring and summer season, and here’s a pick of the highlights:
A Taste of Honey
One of Shelagh Delaney’s earliest plays, A Taste of Honey is a poignant tale of honour, lust, and rebellion in 1950s Britain. It’s a colourful show that celebrates life in all its often gruelling guises, set to a backdrop of jazz and fiery energy. The show is running until the 11th of May.
A Small Family Business
Returning to the stage on which it premiered in 1987, this dark comedy takes you to a world of dodgy dealings and hilarious antics, as protagonist Jack McCracken tries to maintain his integrity after inheriting his father’s shady family business. Exclusive previews run from the 1st to the 8th of April.
The Silver Tassie
This harrowing and thought-provoking World War One play follows the life of young Irishman Harry Heegan from his home in Dublin to the trenches. Capturing the horrors of war on a level comparable to the acclaimed War Horse and directed by Olivier award-winning veteran Howard Davies, this seldom-performed show begins its run on the 15th of April.
Whimsical and fun, this show is perfect family entertainment. The story of a little girl and a ghostly elephant that came to stay one Tuesday afternoon is adapted from the picture book by Ross Collins and includes huge blue elephants, fun songs and cheeky, kid-friendly humour. With four and five star reviews all round after its National Theatre run, it’s set for a sell-out season.
Critics have showered praise on director Sam Mendes for his re-imagining of this Shakespeare classic. Simon Russell Beale stuns audiences with his performance as the aged King Lear, making this a show well-worth the wait: standard sale tickets are sold out until the end of May. Keep an eye out for new dates released in June and July, or if you’re an American Express card holder, take advantage of American Express
Invites to gain access to sold out shows.
American Express credit cards come with a whole range of benefits, including reserved seating and the chance to buy pre-release tickets for all the best National Theatre shows; just look for the ‘American Express Invites’ box when you book tickets online.