West End Newbie

#1West End Newbie
Posted: 7/2/23 at 11:36am

I’m a regular Broadway theatregoer visiting the West End for the first time in September. Just wondering if anyone has any tips on rush, cheap tickets, shows to see, etc. I know how to navigate the bway scene pretty well but wondering how if differs here. Any help is greatly appreciated. 

#3West End Newbie
Posted: 7/2/23 at 12:19pm

Very few shows sell-out. Go to box office and you will almost always be able to purchase a ticket. 

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#4West End Newbie
Posted: 7/2/23 at 12:45pm

Go to theatremonkey.com and there are answers to most of your questions. The site talks about individual shows and discounts available. Todaystix.com in London will give you lottery and rush ticket offers too.

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Dylan Smith4
#5West End Newbie
Posted: 7/2/23 at 1:03pm

TodayTix also has offers for the West End. Theatre in general is WAY CHEAPER over here! It’s the reason why I can se so many shows while over here. Also, there are some great off-west end venues like the Almeida Theatre in Northern London. PM me if you want some suggestions on shows!

The idea is to work and to experiment. Some things will be creatively successful, some things will succeed at the box office, and some things will only - which is the biggest only - teach you things that see the future. And they're probably as valuable as any of your successes. -Harold Prince

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#6West End Newbie
Posted: 7/2/23 at 5:57pm

TheatreMonkey's Day Seat Finder - Day Seat Finder

The site also has seating plans with recommendations on views and prices - and often tailored to the current show - along with reader reports.

TheatreMonkey also spotlights deals which can be purchased through the Monkey site or other sites which are linked.

The TodayTix lotteries are omnipresent - Patriots at the Noel Coward could not sell me a rush/day seat - it had to go through the TodayTix App. I don't know if other theatres are similarly limited. 

There also is a TKTS booth in Leicester Square, but that booth doesn't always have discounts. 

The best method is to go to the theatre box office. Ask for day seats - and if there are none, ask if they can do anything. They generally will try to help you if possible. It's not always possible. On our last trip, we got a spectacular seat for Crazy for You by asking - and we got a tremendous discount (almost 2/3 offf). Even "sold out" shows have held back seats and returns. Last year, we got 125 GBP tickets for 100 GBP. Several theatres use dynamic pricing - so seat prices do fluctuate. Several years ago, we say Book of Mormon tickets drop 50 GBP day of show. 

I've not seen any official discounts for Cabaret - but it was worth the price to us (July 2022). 

Rebecca is having its english language premiere at Charing Cross Theatre. Could be worthwhile. Rebecca For 52.50 GBP, you get a stalls seat, a program and a glass of proseco, which is a pretty good deal.  Unlike the US, programmes are not free at most UK theatres.

Also, shows almost always start on time. And there rarely is a pre-show announcement. The show just starts.  

Lots of advice on shows, etcs over on Theatreboard  Threatds are by show.

#7West End Newbie
Posted: 7/3/23 at 10:16pm

Thank you all so much for this advice. This is all fantastic!

Updated On: 7/3/23 at 10:16 PM

#8West End Newbie
Posted: 7/3/23 at 10:42pm

So this is in very early stage: https://bwayrush.com/london Think of it as a beta version if you will. I took a lot of information from TheatreMonkey, and many other sources. West End theaters at the top, then the rest at the bottom. I don't think West End, non-West End is a good way to categorize, but I can't think of a better way at the moment. This is by no means complete. I'm working on it in my spare time. If you spot incorrect information, please let me know. Hopefully this can help.

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#9West End Newbie
Posted: 7/3/23 at 11:06pm

All of these suggestions have been great! I’ll just add that if you’re ever in need of a little bit of home, definitely check out the Joe Allen restaurant. It’s in a new location now (from the one that I ate at a number of years ago..). A number of my friends still rave about their cheeseburgers (which weren’t on the menu, but definitely worth ordering). Remember to have the cheeseburger with Coleman’s mustard…which they should bring to your table. Have a great time. London in September is one of my favorite times to be there!

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Jordan Catalano
#10West End Newbie
Posted: 7/3/23 at 11:13pm

I NEVER KNEW there was a Joe Allen's in London. Guess I know where I'll be eating next month lol

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#11West End Newbie
Posted: 7/4/23 at 12:01am

There is a TKTS booth in Leicester Square just like we have here, but you can also purchase ahead of time on https://officiallondontheatre.com/tkts/

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Updated On: 7/4/23 at 12:01 AM

#12West End Newbie
Posted: 7/4/23 at 12:36pm

Jordan Catalano said: "I NEVER KNEW there was a Joe Allen's in London. Guess I know where I'll be eating next month lol"

Even though it was in the heart of the West End, Joe Allen was the hardest restaurant to find in London, a dark, barely marked entrance across from The Lion King Stage Door. A few years ago it moved, not far, but to a far more prominent location. 

BTW, my favorite London theater listing site, londontheatre.co.uk, which I used up until last summer has gotten a lot less thorough. They used to list EVERYTHING, West End and off, rep companies, ballet, opera, etc. Not so anymore. What's the gold standard these days?

Sister George