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Help us decide which musical to see in London

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Jun 2nd, 2014, 07:08 PM
  #1
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Help us decide which musical to see in London

My DH and I want to see a musical while in London later this month. We have seen Jersey Boys, Les Mis, Lion King, Mama Mia, Miss Saigon, Phantom & Wicked.

We have narrowed our choice to Billy Elliot, Matilda (is this geared more for children??) and Once. My DH is over 6ft tall, so a theatre with good leg room would be ideal. Also, would any of these likely be offered at the TKTS booth at Leicester Square?

We welcome any of your suggestions.

Thanks!
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Jun 2nd, 2014, 07:32 PM
  #2
 
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We saw Matilda in New York with two of the actors who had originated their roles in London--the man who plays Mrs. Trumball (he was great playing the female headmaster) and Miss Honey had a beautiful voice. We thought the musical was wonderful and there were plenty of adults in the theater without kids. Can't speak to the London theater as far as leg room.
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Jun 2nd, 2014, 08:01 PM
  #3
Hez
 
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We saw Billy Elliot several years ago in London. Was great. Can't speak to the legroom though.
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Jun 2nd, 2014, 08:47 PM
  #4
 
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You may find some helpful information at
http://www.theatermonkey.com/

In addition to theater news, show listings, special offers, access information and seating plans, there are comments about seat comfort, sight lines, and leg room.

Look for their page on Seats to Buy or Avoid in Each Venue. Choose For Best Seat Info on the left-hand side of the page.
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Jun 2nd, 2014, 09:58 PM
  #5
 
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Best show I've ever seen was Singing in The Rain at the Palace Theatre. Billy Elliot in Las Vegas was excellent as well. As with all public places, leg room will be an issue no matter the theatre. I wouldn't want to be the short guy behind your husband either.
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Jun 3rd, 2014, 12:33 AM
  #6
 
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You can tell what is on sale and the prices on the TKTS website:

http://www.tkts.co.uk/whats-on-sale/

As for legroom, I have yet to be in a theatre in London with a lot of legroom. Best bet is to book tickets where one seat is next to the aisle so he can stretch a bit during the show.

Enjoy!
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Jun 3rd, 2014, 01:14 AM
  #7
 
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We have seen Billy Elliot 3 times Love that show. My husband in 6'5" and If the theater has Loge seats the chairs are movable and there is lots of room to spread out. Don't recall ever seeing Billy Elliot at TKTS
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Jun 3rd, 2014, 01:21 AM
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Another vote for Billy Elliot, sp. if you like Elton John's music, he wrote the music. Also The Wiz is very good if it's still playing at the west end. We saw it at the palladium. Michael Crawford played the role of the wizard of oz. great music too, you might know some of the songs - somewhere over the rainbow, ease on down the road, home. It was also made into a movie starring Diana Ross as Dorothy, Michael Jackson as the scarecrow and Richard Pryor as the wiz. Your children might like it too for the story line and the interesting characters.

If you will be in London for a few days, you can get great deals by walking up to the theater's ticket office an hour or two before show time and ask about same day unsold or conc ( concession tickets ). If I remember correctly, we paid £10 per ticket for the Wiz for good orchestra seats.
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Jun 3rd, 2014, 02:00 AM
  #9
 
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Sorry, I misread your post about " geared more for children". I thought you were taking your children along. In any case, The Wiz is still an enjoyable musical with fantastic songs.
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Jun 3rd, 2014, 02:14 AM
  #10
 
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Ticket Availability is driven by supply and demand so there's no guarantee that a particular musical will be on sale at the TKTS Booth. However, the few times that I checked the booth at LS, I've always seen available seats for Billy E. Not sure about Matilda.
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Jun 3rd, 2014, 02:45 AM
  #11
 
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Many London theaters have boxes of usually 4-6 seats. You don't have to purchase the entire box. These seats often aren't fixed so can be adjusted, within reason. Check at the box office.
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Jun 3rd, 2014, 02:57 AM
  #12
 
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Tickets at TKTS are not always discounted - for some musicals they sell only the full price tickets. So you may as well book in advance, especially if you want a seat with legroom.
Billy Elliot is good. Charlie & the Chocolate Factory is also very well done, with beautiful sets. More children in that one.
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Jun 3rd, 2014, 11:09 AM
  #13
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Thanks for all your input. Guess we will cross 'Once' off our list.

This is our first trip to London and I have no idea on the different theatres. Between Billy Elliot and Matilda, is one theatre more appealing (i.e. great architecture/history) over the other?

k_marie--I will check out theatremonkey--Thanks!
BikerScott--I will look at the TKTS website.

Now I have to decide if it might be worth it to just purchase the tickets ahead of time and secure an aisle seat for DH's leg room.
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Jun 3rd, 2014, 12:35 PM
  #14
 
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We saw Billy Elliot in London and really enjoyed it - although there weren't any soaring solos as in Les Mis and Wicked, there were some great group numbers and dancing.

But just to make your decision harder, some friends of mine saw Once here in Seattle over the weekend and said it was AMAZING - it made me sorry that we didn't see it when we had the chance.

It might be unlikely that Once would be at the TKTS booths, since it's pretty popular, but if I was choosing between those three for a show tonight, I'd choose Once.
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Jun 3rd, 2014, 01:07 PM
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I saw Once in London and absolutely loved it. It does look like they have had a cast change - we saw Zrinka Cvitešić as The Girl and she stole the show, imo. She did win the Olivier for it and has apparently moved on.

I liked the show so much that I am anxious to see the US tour which comes to L.A. this summer.

One thing, if you do go, try to sit in the Stalls (Orchestra in the US) because you can go onstage before the show starts and at the interval to purchase drinks. The stage setting is a pub.
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Jun 3rd, 2014, 03:00 PM
  #16
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Well...Once is back on the list....in fact, after reading the review on Theatremonkey, it just might be #1.

Are tickets for afternoon performances easier to obtain? Besides the TKTS booth, are there any legit on-line sites to purchase discounted tickets prior to leaving the States?
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Jun 3rd, 2014, 08:35 PM
  #17
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Saw "Once" at the beginning of May at the Phoenix. Despite the mostly favourable reviews and various awards, we were most disappointed. The folk-indie-rock music was forgettable and the plot not very interesting. But it's a matter of taste. At the curtain, the audience was on its feet cheering. Admittedly most were much younger, so perhaps I'm an old fogy.
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Jun 4th, 2014, 12:06 PM
  #18
 
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Well, I'm an old fogy, but I did love it. It is based on Glen Hansard's movie and the music is definitely a part of the show, although it is not musical theatre.

As you say, a matter of taste.
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