Get us in your inbox


Theatre Royal Stratford East

  • Theatre
  • Stratford
  • Recommended
Theatre Royal Stratford East_CREDIT_Daniel Allen.jpg
© Daniel Allen

Time Out says

A buzzing community theatre with an impressive history.

Talk about having a lot to live up to: in the '50s and '60s Theatre Royal Stratford East was arguably the most influential theatre in London, thanks to the presence of the visionary Joan Littlewood and her Theatre Workshop.

These days its output tends to send fewer shockwaves around the world. But all that might change with the arrival of new artistic director Nadia Fall, who's turned heads by scrapping the venue's popular Caribbean cafe, cutting its focus on musical theatre development, and programming an ambitious set of shows that aim to get audiences in from across the city. 


Gerry Raffles Square
E15 1BN
Rail: Stratford International; Tube/DLR: Stratford
Do you own this business?
Sign in & claim business

What’s on

Beautiful Thing

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Drama

Thirty years since its premiere, there’s a timeless power to Jonathan Harvey’s seminal queer love story. Set on a south London council estate, ‘Beautiful Thing’ tracks the awkward teenage romance of neighbours Ste and Jamie as they begin to explore their sexuality for the first time. The soul-searching, open conversations that their fizzing new connection brings sting as much today as ever.  Aspects of Harvey’s script do now feel like a beguiling relic of the ’90s. It was written at a time when the age of consent was 21 for gay men, Section 28 had yet to be repealed, and Aids was a threat that loomed large in people’s minds. Fear and secrecy is key to the central relationship. But Harvey’s words celebrate gay love in all its glory and the fact that the play is now something of a period piece does little to erode it. Harvey’s script, which balances pain and hope in just the right measure, is powered by an ever-present angst. Although they never say it, Ste and Jamie worry that their futures might already be in the gutter.   In Anthony Simpson-Pike’s anniversary production, the fear of violence is always there, crackling, but so is the excitement of early flirtation. Between scenes, the actors dance under Elliot Griggs’s pink lighting hues, and there is a nervous fire to Jamie and Ste’s interactions. Historically the play has attracted some big-name talent ranging from the likes of Jonathan Bailey, Andrew Garfield, Rhys Ifans and Jonny Lee Miller. But Simpson-Pike has moved ‘B

Jack and the Beanstalk

  • Panto

The Theatre Royal Stratford East panto has proved a bit hit-and-miss in recent years, but it’s always worth checking out thanks to an interesting rotating array of writers paired with the inimitable original songs from Robert Hyman, who provides consistently interesting new tunes where most pantos favour glorified cover versions. This year’s is written by Anna Jordan, who made a splash with her award-winning debut play ‘Yen’ and has then largely gone on to write for TV – notably ‘Killing Eve’ and ‘Succession’. Denzel Westley-Sanderson directs a TBA cast.

You may also like
You may also like
Bestselling Time Out offers