Once

Musicals

West End

Phoenix Theatre

Until Sat Mar 21 2015

  • © Brinkhoff/Moegenburg

    Ronan Keating (Guy) and Jill Winternitz (Girl)

  • © Brinkhoff/Moegenburg

  • © Frank Ockenfels

  • © Frank Ockenfels

  • © Frank Ockenfels

  • © Brinkhoff/Moegenburg

  • Brinkhoff/Moegenburg

    ONCE - The Musical Phoenix Theatre London

  • © Brinkhoff/Moegenburg

© Brinkhoff/Moegenburg

Ronan Keating (Guy) and Jill Winternitz (Girl)

Time Out rating:

<strong>Rating: </strong><span class='lf-avgRating'>4</span>/5

User ratings:

<strong>Rating: </strong><span class='lf-avgRating'>4</span>/5
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Venue details

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  • Name:

    Phoenix Theatre

  • Address:

    Phoenix Theatre 104-110 Charing Cross Rd
    WC2H 0JP

  • Categories :

    Theatre. West End. Musicals

Once 2014 - 2015

  • Date Time Price information
  • Mon Dec 22
    14:30
    £19.50-£72.50, Premium Seats £95
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  • 10% off our normal price

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    Offer expires 21 March 2015. This offer can be redeemed on Mon, Tue, Wed, Thu, Fri, Sat.

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Users say

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<strong>Rating: </strong><span class='lf-avgRating'>0</span>/5

Average User Rating

3.9 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:10
  • 4 star:3
  • 3 star:3
  • 2 star:3
  • 1 star:1
LiveReviews|20
2 people listening
Terry_Ea

Arrived at the theatre and took my seat early.  Stage was set out as a huge pub.  Members of the cast were there playing fast, lively music to audience members also on the stage and I thought, this is going to be a great night.  Unfortunately, I was completely wrong.  Once the audience took their seats, the lights went down and the happy atmosphere followed them.  


Now, I can't say 100% why I didn't like this production.  The cast were very talented, the musicians were, on the whole pretty good (though I thought the piano might need re-tuning at certain points) but to me this wasn't a musical in the traditional sense.


It felt as if someone had found a CD of the dullest and most despondent  Irish songs and decided to write an extremely thin story around them,  Nobody goes to a play expecting it to make sense or be logical all the way through, but the scene with the bank manager was so forced and untenable that I was left feeling cheated by it.


Positive points, well there were a few.  The stage set is amazing but here again the play lets itself down.  the majority of the set is a Dublin pub but there is only one scene actually in the pub (though it does get used in the interval to sell real drinks to those members of the audience that want to use it). The lighting rig was tremendous and very flexible, which was useful as there were no follow spots. 


And thats it really.  Would I see it again?  Nope, not a chance (though I would like to see the movie which is apparently completely different) Am I in a minority in my opinion of this play?  Well, possibly.  All reviews are subjective by nature and this was the first musical that really didn't work for me.  

marthakiu_15

That was the first time that I ever seen the musical -- I had never heard of it before -- and it immediatly became my favourite musical ever!! I am so enthusiastic about it, I could talk about it for days. Unmissable. Unforgettable. Arthur Darvill left me speechless, and the Girl was lovely and incredibly moving. The whole cast was just perfect. Love love love love love it. Just go and see it yourself, you won't regret it.

Mei M

I loved Once!! It left such a huge impact on me. While I was listening to the music, I felt my heart drop to the floor. It was an experience I will never forget. The music was beautiful and the performances were excellent! David Hunter was outstanding!!! I highly recommend this to all theater-goers who love genuine and heartfelt music. I loved the musicality of each artist - they play instruments excellently! I love how the music was interwoven with the story. Once is really a beautiful piece.

Daniele F

A very entertaining show, the actors sing greately. The theatre is perfect for this show, good acustic and I was fascinated with the central stage converting into a bar during the break. Highly raccomened!

Christopher Browne

Once is everything a show needs to be, not more, not less. Away from the paraphernalia of your regular West End musical, Once offers simplicity and honesty; it almost falls out of the category of musical, since its songs are not so much part of the plot as the characters actually performing. The cast really makes you think about the amount of talent there is in this world, they're absolutely flawless. If you are in London, please make yourself a favor and go see this work of art. And a tip, get to the theater early, you'll enjoy it a lot more.

Mike

We went with visitors from the US on the basis of reviews we had seen. Arriving about 15 minutes before "curtain up", we were surprised and delighted to find the cast already on stage singing and playing an eclectic mix of Irish and Czech music - and with lots of members of the audience on the stage with them enjoying the fun. The music made the evening - played and sung with great talent enthusiasm. The story line, in contrast, is thin and shy on details of why all those Czechs are in Dublin etc. etc., so don't go if you are looking for a profound plot. Go to enjoy music from the heart - these people are really enjoying what they are doing. The three-generation team, playing the Czech mother, daughter and granddaughter, played their roles with great style and dry humour (I'm Czech - I'm always serious...).

Brittany

I saw the film Once a few years ago by accident and instantly fell in love with it. When I heard that it had been put in theatres I felt both excited and a little nervous because I was unsure if it could really capture the same feelings that I had when seeing the film. The play was absolutely amazing. The setting was perfect for the feel that the story wants to give its audience. It's quaint and cosy. The theatre itself is so small that it makes you feel as though you are right there on stage with the players, and listening too all of my favourite songs played live right in front of me only gave it that much more elegance. The actors were genuinely skilled at making you feel the raw emotions that usually only a film could capture since its such a longer time frame and much more settings, props, close up on facial expressions, etc. It was clear to see that even the musicians themselves were so into the emotions that they were feeling when playing their music, which made it all the better for us as an audience to feel it along with them. (A few guitar strings popped here and there because they were being strummed so forcefully) I brought my friend with me who was unfamiliar with the story and once intermission came she was already hooked. Definitely a one of a kind type of story that will leave you feeling really great when you exit the theatre.

Komal Mistry

I was reccommended this play by 2 people, I'd briefly skim read the blurb and reviews and thought I'd give it a go with one of my girlfriends. Ran into the theatre with about 5 minutes to go and the cast were singing and playing music which was absolutely delightful, although difficult to hear what they were singing. We had seats in the Upper circle which were perfectly fine (for the price). The actual play itself was good, although I have not seen film to compare it to (I have heard since that this is better). There was a mix type of songs (slow and fast), great story line, fantastic acting by the lead female, very beliveable, to the extent that she reminded me of myself! During the break, the audience were invited to stage for drinks at the bar which I thought was clever. I'd reccommend this play to people who enjoy a good musical, albeit sad love story and a bit of comedy.

PAL

Before show started all the musicians were on the stage playing Irish music, thought that this was going to be a good show, how wrong was I, I thought it was supposed to be a musical. I like something with a bit of life in it. It needed a good kick up the backside, I fell asleep during the first half, 4 people around me did not return after the 1st half. Hoped 2nd half would hot up, it never did. The lead man had a lovely voice and the songs were good, but oh so boring. I like to be entertained, but am afraid I was not. Went home very disappointed and had felt I had wasted my birthday money.

frederick

I thought it was a joke... Not that I don't like minimalistic staging when it's appropriate but here I think this show wasn't meant to be staged in the West End. When you pay £50+ for a show (even if I paid less thanks to a 50% discount), you're expecting to be wowed, to live a truly special experience, not something that might be compared to a slightly improved workshop. I really didn't like it... and I've seen more than 100 shows in my life so I'm able to compare ;-)

Julie

Really loved this gentle story with beautiful music, superb performances and great atmosphere. The end had me in tears. The whole theatre gave them a standing ovation which was very well deserved.

Ray

Loved it - from start to finish. Music, storyline, staging and cast. Only way to top this is to see it in a real Irish pub, with Guinness on tap throughout.

Axel

Superb show! Better than the excellent film in many ways. Beautiful set, wonderfully lit, with an astonishingly natural sound for a musical. The cast are talented and the script witty - a must see.

Rob

Fantastic show; highly talented cast of actor/musicians, playing a wonderful variety of instruments. Having not seen the film, I can't compare it; but the story was captivating. Headphone dance was a little weird, and could have been performed solo. Also, as per ted's comment, a numb bum did make me question the length of each act, particularly the outdoors scene. Lead actress was overcome with emotion at the end; the standing ovation was deserved. Overall though, an amazing evening. Tip: arrive early!

AA

Great cast and wonderful music, though I didn't find it as charming as the film.

ted

The music to this show is superb, I could listen to it over and over again. I just wish they would pick up the pace a bit as t feels like a long evening.

guy

Basic, honest and undeniably beautiful Once is a musical that will draw a tear and warm the heart.