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Savoy Theatre

  • Theatre
  • Strand

Time Out says

This ritzy theatre, attached to famous Savoy hotel, is pure class

Savoy Theatre's dazzling 1929 art deco interior is embellished with blindingly bright panels of gold and silver, and boasts theatre seats decked out in jazzy abstract patterns. It's like no other theatre in London both for its substantial interior design flair, and because it's tucked away in the basement under famous hostelry The Savoy. 

Today, Savoy Theatre is all quintessential Jazz Age glitz, but it's not quite as authentic as it looks. In 1990, the entire theatre was gutted by a fire, and had to be painstakingly restored to its original glories by experts who studied old photographs and fragments gleaned from the ashes. In an unexpected silver lining, the reconstruction also allowed the architects to add a swimming pool on the floor right above the stage, where hotel guests swim oblivious to the musical spectaculars unfolding below. 

The present day Savoy Theatre stands on the site of an older venue of the same name. In the late 19th century, this Savoy became synonymous with Gilbert & Sullivan, the composing duo who unleashed (very silly) operetta after operetta onto its stage. These productions were masterminded by D'Oyly Carte, the theatre manager, who bought the theatre in 1880. Under his regime, it became the first theatre in London to be lit by electric lighting, and audiences flocked to the so called 'Savoy Operas'. His legacy was continued first by his son, then by his granddaughter Bridget, who died in 1985 and finally brought an operatic dynasty to an end.  

Savoy Theatre has 1,158 seats, and welcomes audiences in with a programme that flits between the light opera that originally made its name and musical theatre, including recent hit 'Dream Girls'.


Savoy Court, Strand
Rail/Tube: Charing Cross
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What’s on

Sunset Boulevard

  • Musicals

It is a truth generally acknowledged that 1993's ‘Sunset Boulevard’ is on the relatively select list that comprises Andrew Lloyd Webber Musicals That Are Actually Quite Good. There is, however, some debate over whether Webber, Don Black and Christopher Hampton’s claustrophobic adaptation of Billy Wilder’s 1950 film noir has ever really had the production it deserves, with the original Trevor Nunn-directed version largely agreed to have been propped up by its stellar leading ladies, notably Patti Lupone and Glenn Close. But maybe this will be the one! Perennially hip director Jamie Lloyd rarely misses, and did a bang-up job with ‘Evita’ at the Open Air Theatre a few years back. That his star for this West End revival will be erstwhile Pussycat Doll Nicole Scherzinger is… intriguing, however. While she certainly has the lungpower and the fame to carry off the role of Norma Desmond, a former silent screen star losing her mind as she rots away in her Hollywood mansion, we’ve yet to see any obvious indication that she can act, something LuPone and Close did very well indeed. Interestingly, Scherzinger’s only other stage role to date is another faded Webber starlet: Grizabella the Glamour Cat in the 2014 West End return of ‘Cats’ – she was solid, but it wasn’t exactly a demanding part. The bottom line is that Lloyd isn’t an idiot, and if he thinks Scherzinger is up to the job, she probably is. Also of interest is how he tackles the show more generally: once a byword for flamboyant

Plaza Suite

  • Comedy

And just like that, Sarah Jessica Parker will make her West End debut next year opposite husband Matthew Broderick in a revival of Neil Simon’s 1968 comedy ‘Plaza Suite’. Having played a hit season on Broadway last year, John Benjamin Hickey’s production will be headed to the Savoy Theatre early in 2024, for a limited season. The comedy is set in the titular hotel suite, and sees Parker and Broderick playing a series of occupying couples, each with very distinct problems of their own.  While Broderick is best known these days as a heavyweight Broadway star - he made his West End debut in 2019 in ‘The Starry Messenger’ - Parker is, of course, best known for a certain TV show and a certain reboot of a certain TV show. But she’s actually got some serious Broadway chops, having made her debut there in 1976 in William Archibald’s ‘The Innocents’, directed by one Harold Pinter. Clearly it’s a fairly light evening of entertainment that demonstrates the couple’s range without doing anything that flies drastically in the face of SJP’s fanbase. But enthusiastic Broadway reviews suggest it should be a properly entertaining night at the theatre regardless of your feelings on its stars. Tickets will go on sale in September.

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