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Best West End theatre shows in London

Our guide to the best theatre shows you can see in London's West End right now

West End in London
Photo: Steve Collis/Flickr
By Time Out London Theatre |
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Call it the West End or call it Theatreland, but central London is the best place to see theatre in the world. And Time Out’s guide to the best theatre shows currently running in the West End. Our critics pick the best theatre shows in town, featuring anything from London musicals to the best children's theatre shows.

We'll be updating this page as new West End theatre shows open, so keep checking back as our critics refresh their choices. 

And if you want to look further afield for great shows, don't forget our pick of the best new theatre openings this month.

RECOMMENDED: your complete A-Z guide to West End theatre shows

The best West End theatre shows

10
Theatre, West End

The Lion King

icon-location-pin Lyceum Theatre, Covent Garden
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The posters have been plastered around the London Underground for years – long enough for this show to become the most successful musical of all time – but nothing prepares you for the sheer impact of 'The Lion King's opening sequence…

Time Out says
9
Wicked, Apollo Victoria
© Matt Crockett
Theatre, West End

Wicked

icon-location-pin Apollo Victoria, Victoria
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The film world continues its love affair with werewolves, vampires and all things 'Twilight'. But theatre types have always known witches are where it's at…

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8
<meta charset="utf-8" /><p><span>Hayley Atwell</span></p>
Theatre, Drama

Rosmersholm

icon-location-pin Duke of York’s Theatre, Covent Garden
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‘Rosmersholm’ by Henrik Ibsen is a play that few people have heard of and even fewer can pronounce (FYI the verdict appears to be ‘Rosmer’s Home’)…

Time Out says
7
<meta charset="utf-8" /><p><span>Katharine McPhee&nbsp;(Jenna)</span></p>
Theatre, Musicals

Waitress

icon-location-pin Adelphi Theatre, Strand
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‘Waitress’ is made from the very finest ingredients…

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5
Theatre, Musicals

Matilda the Musical

icon-location-pin Cambridge Theatre, Seven Dials
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'My mummy says I'm a miracle,' lisps a pampered mini-me at a purgatorial kiddies' birthday party at the outset of this delicious, treacly-dark family show. The obnoxious ma and pa of its titular, gifted, pint-sized heroine are not, of course, quite so doting. But 'Matilda' must be making its creators, playwright Dennis Kelly and comedian-songsmith Tim Minchin, a very pair of proud parents.

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3
Come from Away, West End 2019
© Matthew Murphy
Theatre, Musicals

Come from Away

icon-location-pin Phoenix Theatre, Charing Cross Road
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Musicals don’t come much more low-key, wholesome or Canadian than ‘Come from Away’…

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2
<meta charset="utf-8" /><p><span>Cleve September (Laurens), Jamael Westman ( Hamilton), Jason Pennycooke (Lafayette) &amp; Tarinn Callender (Mulligan)</span></p>
Theatre, Musicals

Hamilton

icon-location-pin Victoria Palace Theatre, Victoria
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Open run

Okay, let’s just get this out of the way. ‘Hamilton’ is stupendously good…

Time Out says
1
SWEAT
Theatre, Drama

Sweat

icon-location-pin Gielgud Theatre, Soho
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What happens when three generations of certainty and security crumble overnight? Lynn Nottage’s monumental play about class, race and the dignity of labour tells us – and the answers should shame and scare us all…

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