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Leaving for London in two weeks...tell me again how I might try the impossible to get tickets for one of the popular musicals.


Leaving for London in two weeks...tell me again how I might try the impossible to get tickets for one of the popular musicals.

Old Nov 24th, 2000, 11:35 AM
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Leaving for London in two weeks...tell me again how I might try the impossible to get tickets for one of the popular musicals.

I have read on this forum how the popular shows in London are sold out through next year. Well, I'll be there in two weeks and, of course, now want what may be impossible to get. Is it worth trying booking agencies at this late date? If not, can the concierge at our hotel get seats and can we wait until we get to London to make those arrangements (we are staying at a five-star hotel)? Other alternatives?
Old Nov 24th, 2000, 12:00 PM
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If you are in the US, in New York City there are at least two ticket brokers that handle tickets for London shows: Keith Prowse, and
Edwards & Edwards. You can call them and for a fee they often have good seats for sold-out shows.
Old Nov 24th, 2000, 12:50 PM
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We managed to get tickets last minute for Mama MIa two weeks ago from firstcalltickets.com. Give them a try. There will be a fee, but it is worth it to have them waiting for you when you get there.
Old Nov 24th, 2000, 01:09 PM
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I'd try the ticket agencies, you never know. Edwards&Edwards is also known as Global Tickets I believe. I'd also try TicketmasterUK, FirstCall, and Ablemarle Tickets in London. All have websites. If all else fails, since you are staying at a 5 star hotel you can probably see if the concierge can get them. You might call the hotel, I don't think I'd wait till I got there to do this. You can also show up at the ticket box office at about 11 a.m. when they release tickets and see what you can get - I personally would not do this as I have better uses for my time but then again I plan ahead and order tickets 6 mo. in advance. Since you don't have that option tho, it's something you could do - I'd call the hotel first tho.
Old Nov 24th, 2000, 01:19 PM
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It also depends on what you mean by "the popular shows." Many of the popular musicals have been around long enough that there are always seats available--i.e., Phantom, Les Mis, Blood Brothers, and so on. The only show that seems to be consistently selling out that I'm aware of is "Mamma Mia!" and even Mamma Mia tickets could be had same-day when I was recently in London (October) from the various ticket booths in Leicester Square (not, unfortunately *the* half-price ticket booth--I've never known them to have Mamma Mia).

What shows are you particularly interested in?
Old Nov 24th, 2000, 01:50 PM
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I'm interested in Lion King and Mama Mia. Yes, I know...slap me!

Thank you all for your advice. I'll give it a try.
Old Nov 24th, 2000, 04:47 PM
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I just returned from London. Leicster Square has booths that you can get discount tickets for on the same day. The only show I got through the conceige was Stones in His Pockets. Mama Mia was not discounted. almost all shows were avaiable.
Old Nov 24th, 2000, 04:52 PM
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Don't know much about Lion King, but I do know that Mamma Mia's "sold-outness" is in name only (unlike the recent short run of the Sam Mendes-directed "To the Green Fields Beyond," starring Dougray Scott at the Donmar, to which tickets could not be had for love nor money. Lord knows I tried).

Two ways to get tickets:
- same-day returns at the box office. Call them a day or two ahead and ask what time you should call about returns; better yet, stop by the box office at that time. I know people who have had a great deal of luck getting tickets this way.

- The ticket booths in Leicester Square. I am of two minds about these places; at least some I know can be rip-offs, but in some cases you *can* get otherwise "unavailable" tickets that are decent. To get the best deal possible, investigate the seating beforehand using online seating charts from places like Albemarle (www.albemarle-london.co.uk) and the official London Theatre site (www.officiallondontheatre.co.uk) and decide where you want to be. Make sure you know the *face* value of tickets in these seating areas (available from the theater)...then make sure you're not paying more. Don't let the ticket agent just tell you "the seats are in the dress circle" or "the stalls" or whatever--insist that they show you on a seating chart.

If you take these precautions, you should be able to get decent seats for Mamma Mia; I would think this system would work for Lion King too, if it's sold out. (As I said, I haven't been paying attention to that one.)

I would also bet that at a five-star hotel, your concierge should be able to help you, giving you a third option.

Genuinely half-price, same-day tickets for a lot of shows (but not either of the ones you mentioned) are available from the "official" Leicester Square Half-Price Ticket Booth, which is the bronze kiosk sitting by itself at the southeast side of the square. It's pretty amazing what you can get there sometimes--I got fourth-row seats for Rent once, for 18 GBP--but the sold-out shows, pretty much no.

Have a great time!

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