Many things are considered bad behaviour in this day and age. Looking at your phone during a meeting, calling Singapore “f*****g s**t” for not having Pokémon Go, and, it would seem, ruining Doctor Faustus by “eating chicken nuggets” in the theatre during a final performance by Game Of Thrones star Kit Harington. Theatre producer Richard Jordan complained about the audience in The Stage, as they reportedly “could see nothing wrong in talking, eating and taking pictures throughout the show – or complaining when asked to stop.” He also didn’t approve of one couple’s purchase of Chicken McNuggets and fries during the interval, no doubt making the theatre smell like the last train home.
After the Cumberbitches Vs Hamlet debacle last year, in which he stopped the show to appeal to the audience to stop filming him, TV fans at the theatre have given themselves a bad rap. But it’s time to change that reputation. Here are the pop musicians and screen actors taking to the West End and beyond this summer, and where and when you can catch them and not be a total dick.
What: Guys & Dolls
When: Showing until August 21st
Where: Phoenix Theatre
Rebel Wilson replaced Samantha Spiro in the role of club singer Miss Adelaide in the London revival of Guys & Dolls back in June. She received a standing ovation on the first night.
When: Showing until 6h August
Where: Jerwood Theatre Downstairs
Matt Smith’s latest post-Doctor Who venture is a piece of experimental theatre called Unreachable, created by Scottish playwright Anthony Nielson. The play depicts the attempts of one director to find the perfect light for his new film. Nielson told the Evening Standard, “whilst it seems to be about the movie industry, it’s actually meant as a metaphor,” as “we are all the Directors of our lives.” Deep.
Wonderful night spent at the theatre! Lord every minute of it! Story was funny and dark and twisty. The actors were incredible. And the transitions between scenes very well undertaken. Very different set up the show I saw this afternoon #Unreachable #nursesdayoff #amazing #MattSmith #royalcourttheatre
What: The Spoils
When: Showing until August 13th
Where: Trafalgar Studios One
Jesse Eisenberg’s Third Play, The Spoils tells the story of a bitter rich kid kicked out of college and now set on thwarting everyone else’s good time. He picks on his Nepalese business student flatmate, and sets about ruining his childhood sweetheart’s engagement to a boring banker. The play also stars Kunal Nayyar from The Big Bang Theory for double-whammy star-spotting. Read Jesse Eisenberg’s ‘Soundtrack Of My Life’ here.
What: Romeo & Juliet
When: Showing until 13th August
Where: Garrick Theare
Following BBC hit War and Peace, Lily James has come to the West End to play the female lead in the performance of Shakespeare’s classic, Romeo and Juliet. The play forms part of The Kenneth Branagh Theatre Company’s first season at the Garrick, and stars James’ Cinderella co-star Richard Madden, alongside Derek Jacobi and Meera Syal.
Ian McKellen and Patrick Stewart
What: No Man’s Land
When: Across the UK 3rd August – 3rd September, London 8th September – December
Where: London Wyndham’s Theatre
Screen and stage virtuosos Ian McKellen and Patrick Stewart come together to perform Harold Pinter’s No Man’s Land across the country over the summer, before settling in London for an Autumn season. Directed by Sean Mathias, the performance, depicting a night of drinking for two ageing writers, had its first run on Broadway, to great acclaim.