Going to see one of the best musicals in London is truly a unique experience, especially if you are planning a trip to London. Some of the most famous musicals in London such as The Lion King, Wicked, Les Miserables and Mamma Mia have been running in London’s best theatres in the West End for years. If you are planning a trip to London, going to see one of the best musicals in London will certainly add an unforgettable experience to your trip.
In order to make sure you get to see one of the best musicals in London, we highly recommend that you buy your tickets in advance, as tickets are normally completely sold out several weeks beforehand for the best shows. Buying your tickets online is easy, and you can choose to collect your tickets at the theatre just before the show, which makes the whole process much more easier.
Discover the most popular musicals in London, from classics like the phantom of the opera and Les Miserables to newer musicals like Aladdin and Mary Poppins.
Top 15 Musicals in London 2020
The multi award-winning musical The Lion King in London’s West End was the first musical we ever saw when we first moved to London, and it’s still one of our favourites. The classical Disney film has been brought to life on stage and it is absolutely magical. Stunning special effects and wonderful costumes, you will sing along to all the songs and realise that you still remember all the words! Wonderful costumes and magical special effects. If you are planning on taking children to a musical in London I would definitely recommend the Lion King.
Theatre Information: Disney’s Lion King takes place at the Lyceum Theatre in London’s West End. This theatre is very close to Covent Garden and The Strand. It’s one of London´s biggest theatres, with a total capacity for 2105 people, and the seats are mainly distributed in two tiers: Stalls and Grand Circle. The total duration of The Lion King Musical in London is 2 hours and 30 minutes (including the interval).
The Musical Wicked in London takes us through the magical and unexpected story of the witches of Oz, also known as the Wicked Witch of the West and Glinda the Good of Oz. You will discover the untold story of the friendship of two girls who meet at sorcery school. A fascinating story about witches and magic, with mouth-opening costumes and brilliant songs, making it unsurprisingly one of the best musicals in London. It´s one of the best musicals in London for kids.
Theatre Information: The musical Wicked in London takes place at the Apollo Victoria Theatre, which is located next to London Victoria Underground and Rail Station. The theatre has a seating capacity of 2300 people, and the seats are distributed in two tiers. There are also many restaurants and hotels around the area.
The award-wining musical The Phantom of the Opera in London is one of London’s most famous theatrical productions and definitely one of the most classical musicals in London. This musical tells the story of a mysterious ghost that has fallen in love with a beautiful chorus singer and haunts the Paris Opera, with eye-popping special effects and lavish costumes.
Theatre Information: The Phantom of the Opera musical in London takes place at the Her Majesty’s Theatre, located next to Trafalgar Square and Leicester Square in London’s West End. The nearest tube station is Leicester Square.
Matilda the Musical is based on Roald Dahl’s famous novel, which tells the story of Matilda, a very intelligent 5 year old girl whose parents are completely uninterested in her. In the West End Musical you’ll be able to see all the well-known characters that appear in the novel, such as Miss Honey and the malevolent director of the school Agatha Trunchbull. Matilda the Musical is definitely one of our favourite options if you’re planning on taking the kids to see a one of the best musicals in London and spend a fun afternoon together.
Theatre Information: Matilda the musical in London is at the Cambridge Theatre in Covent Garden. The nearest tube station is Covent Garden.
5. Mamma Mia
The musical Mamma Mia in London is a smash-hit musical based on the music of pop-sensation ABBA. It tells a story of love, friendship and identity set on a beautiful Greek Island through the timeless songs of ABBA. A funny comedy whose success has entertained the London public more than 15 consecutive years.
Theatre Information: The musical Mamma Mia in London is at the Novello Theatre in London’s West End, near Covent Garden and Somerset House.
Thriller – Live is a musical that celebrates the musical career of one of the most important icons of all time, Michael Jackson. If you are a fan of Michael Jackson, then this West End show is unmissable, with music and videos which are brought to life on stage over 2 hours of hit songs. Enjoy the songs that made Michael Jackson worthy of the nickname “King of Pop”, with choreographies that make this musical a spectacle not to be missed.
Theatre Information: The musical Thriller Live in London is at the Lyric Theatre, located next to Piccadilly Circus and Leicester Square in London’s West End. The nearest tube station is Piccadilly Circus.
Les Miserables is one of London’s most classical musical, as it has been running in London’s West End uninterrupted for more than 30 years. It is an adaptation of the novel by Victor Hugo, one of the best known novels of the nineteenth century, set during the french revolution.
Theatre Information: The musical of Les miserables in London is at the Queen’s Theatre in London’s West End, next to Piccadilly Circus and Leicester Square. The nearest tube station is Piccadilly Circus.
This family musical is based on the Disney’s animated film. With astonishing special effects and extravagant costumes, Aladdin The Musical is one of London’s most family friendly musicals available, featuring popular songs from the classic Academy Awards-winning Disney film Aladdin, including Friend Like Me, A Whole New World and Arabian Nights.
Theatre Information: The musical Aladdin in London is at the Prince Edward Theatre which is located in London’s Soho, next to Leicester Square. The nearest tube station is Leicester Square.
Motown The Musical follows the legendary career of Berry Gordy and the creation of Motown Records, his musical empire. Motown the Musical tells the thrilling tale of a man who fought against the odds and broke barriers to define the sound of a generation, complete with the ups and downs of personal relationships, professional struggles and the music that made history. The memorable Motown songs are sung to perfection in this musical, with amazing choreography to match.
Theatre Information: The musical Motown is at the Shaftesbury Theatre (See map), which is opposite Tottenham Court Road’s Tube Station.
The musical The Book of Mormon is an award winning musical written by the creators of South Park, Trey Parker and Matt Stone as well as the co-creador of the musical “Avenue Q”, Robert Lopez. Since it’s huge success in Broadway, this musical was one of London’s most popular musicals when it first started, and it was impossible to get tickets for months. It is not recommended for persons under 18.
Theatre Information: The musical The Book of Mormon is performed at the Prince of Wales Theatre (See map) which is located next to Piccadilly Circus.
11. School of Rock
Based on the hit film, this hilarious new musical follows Dewey Finn, a failed, wannabe rock star who decides to earn a few extra bucks by posing as a substitute teacher at a prestigious prep school. There he turns a class of straight-A students into a guitar-shredding, bass-slapping, mind-blowing rock band. While teaching these pint-sized prodigies what it means to truly rock, Dewey falls for the school’s beautiful, but uptight headmistress, helping her rediscover the wild child within.
Theatre Information: The musical School of Rock is performed at the New London Theatre (See map) a few minutes walk from Covent Garden.
Tina is a fabulous musical that reveals the untold story of a woman who defied the bounds of her age, gender and race, in which you’ll have the opportunity to discover how Tina Turner transformed into the global Queen of Rock ‘n’ Roll from humble beginnings in Nutbush, Tennessee. Her much loved songs feature in this fantastic musical, and it’s a must see for any of her fans.
Theatre Information: Tina The Musical is performed at the Aldwych Theatre (see map) located on The Strand. The running time of this performance is 3 hours, including the interval.
The musical Waitress is based on the homonymous film written and directed by Adrienne Shelly in 2007. The central character of this musical is Jenna, a waitress highly skilled in the preparation of cakes who is trapped in a small town and in a marriage without love. Jenna will find the opportunity to escape from her routine life thanks to the celebration of a culinary contest in another city. This is the moment in which Jenna must decide if she wants to take the big step and embark on a new adventure, or if she wants to continue with her routine life. Her co-workers and clients, as well as a new doctor who has arrived in the city, will offer conflicting recipes for happiness, but Jenna must finally decide for herself.
Theatre Information: The musical Waitress in London is performed at the Adelfi Theatre (See map) and is approximately 2 hours and 30 minute long (including the interval). The Adelfi theatre in London is located on The Strand in London´s popular West End, between Trafalgar Square and Covent Garden, very close to Charing Cross tube and rail station.
14. Come from Away
This new and joyful musical tells the incredible real-life story of the 7,000 air passengers from around the world who were grounded in Canada on September 11, and the small community from Newfoundland who helped and invited all these people into their lives. As restlessness turned into trust and gratitude became friendship, their stories became a celebration of hope, humanity and unity.
Theatre Information: The musical Come From Away is performed at the Phoenix Theatre (See Map), in London´s West End, next to Leicester Square and Covent Garden, with a running time of 1 hour and 40 minutes (no interval).
15. Mary Poppins
Mary Poppins The Musical arrived in London in October 2019, and it has been a success!.
The Mary Poppins musical in London is performed at the Prince Edward Theatre (see map) located in London´s famous Soho, next to Leicester Square and will last approximately 2 hours and 30 minutes, including the interval.
How to buy cheap tickets for the best musicals in London
Tickets for Musicals in London can be bought online in advance, at the theatre box office or in at Theatre Ticket Booths that you will find dotted around Leicester Square in London.
That said, personally, we think the best way to get cheap tickets for the top musicals in London is by buying them online in advance. We always buy tickets online when we want to go to a musical, even living in London. Personally we always find that buying tickets at the theatre’s box office is usually more expensive for some reason, and we have tried several times to buy last minute tickets at the ticket booths in around Leicester Square but have never been able to. We always get offered seats with reduced visibility for the least known musicals, and in all fairness, these tickets have not been massively reduced, so they still expect you to pay a high price for them.
It is practically impossible to get last-minute tickets for the top musicals in London, since the tickets usually run out completely several weeks before. So if we want to go to a musical we always buy tickets online, and I also like to make sure that I can choose the seats this way.
Information about London Theatres
Every theatre in London is different, but they usually all offer a cloakroom service where you can leave coats and bags. The price of this service is normally between £1 and £2 per item. Some theatres accept larger bags, such as suitcases or strollers.
All theatres have at least one cafeteria, where they normally sell both alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages and some snacks. You can arrive at the theatre before the show starts and have a drink, and it will usually get full during the interval. One thing that you can do is pre-order what you will want during the interval, so that it’s ready for you, an easy way to avoid the long queues that can be formed during the interval.
Public toilets will be available at every theatre, but the number of toilets available will depend on the size and age of the theatre. They do not usually have baby changing facilities.
Booster seats for kids
Some theatres have booster seats for kids, but these do tend to be limited and sometimes can only be used if you are seated in the stalls. You normally need to ask for these in the cloakroom, unless it´s specifically a kids show in which case they tend to have them upon entry.
Hello! We moved to London (Yes, the best city in the world) in 2010, and since then we have been discovering everything that this fantastic city has to offer. We regularly plan our friends’ trips to London, so we thought we would create PlanTripLondon.com and share our suggestions with the world for everyone to be able to plan the perfect trip to London!