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Harry Judd, Jay McGuiness, Aston Merrygold and Louis Smith will star in Rip It Up - The 60s

Boybands, Ian McKellen and Todrick Hall come to the West End – the weekly round-up

Carly-Ann Clements

By Carly-Ann Clements Published 9 November 2018

The West End has become an absolute magnet for famous faces recently. And this week’s news truly reflects that. Members of some of the UK’s biggest boybands are headed to London, as is international superstar Ian McKellen and Todrick Hall. On top of that, we have two birthdays to celebrate and some festive round-ups.

McFly, JLS, The Wanted and a gymnast collide for Rip It Up – The 60s!

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The ultimate boyband is heading to the West End in February because Rip It Up – The 60s is transferring to the Garrick Theatre. The show will feature the iconic songs of the era – including tunes from The Beatles, The Who, The Beach Boys and Marvin Gaye – as well as fashion, dance and so much more. The cast features JLS’ Aston Merrygold, McFly and McBusted’s Harry Judd, Olympic athlete Louis Smith and The Wanted’s Jay McGuiness – all former successful contestants on Strictly Come Dancing.

6 must-see shows coming to London this Christmas

English National Ballet's Nutcracker (Photo: Laurent Liotardo)

Not to give you the fear but Christmas is fast approaching. We want to help you get into the festive spirit. That’s why we’ve rounded up the top six yuletide shows you need to see this winter. There’s something for everyone – from a hilarious comedy to a traditional ballet – so you can keep the whole family entertained.

Todrick Hall to star in Chicago

Todrick Hall as Billy Flynn in Chicago

You’ve seen him in RuPaul’s Drag Race, American Idol, Queer Eye, Taylor Swift music videos and on his YouTube channel, and now you’ll be able to see him live on stage because Todrick Hall is coming to the West End! He’ll be playing Billy Flynn in Chicago – a role he previously played on Broadway. The all-around superstar is making his West End debut at the same time as fellow Drag Race judge Michelle Visage – can we get an Amen!

Everybody’s Talking About Jamie celebrated its West End birthday and extended

Cast of Everybody's Talking About Jamie at the Apollo Theatre (Photo: Matt Crockett)

A year has passed and you don’t even know it! The sensational Everybody’s Talking About Jamie celebrated its first West End birthday on 6 November. And as a little gift to all the theatre-lovers out there, it’s extended its run until 28 September 2019.

Craig Gallivan talks School Of Rock turning 2

Craig Gallivan and the kids cast of School Of Rock (Photo: Manuel Harlan)

Speaking of birthdays, School Of Rock – The Musical is turning two next week! We sat down with Craig Gallivan who plays Dewey Flynn to discuss the show and his experience playing in the band.

London’s most fiery shows

Andrew Polec and Christina Bennington in Bat Out Of Hell - The Musical (Photo: Specular)

As it was Guy Fawkes night this week, we took a look at the West End’s most banging shows! See the five shows that have pyrotechnics that’ll blow you away.

Theatre Makers of the future assemble! Meet Kadhija Raza – a Set and Costume Designer

Kadhija Raza, Set & Costume Designer

We have but days until TheatreCraft 2018! On Monday 19 November, anyone aged 16-30 can find out more about careers in the theatre industry with our free event. At TheatreCraft, you’ll have the opportunity to speak to theatre professionals to get an insight into their craft. Ahead of the event, we spoke to designer Kadhija Raza.

Regent’s Park’s Jesus Christ Superstar returns to London

Declan Bennett as Jesus in Jesus Christ Superstar (Photo: Johan Persson)

The Olivier Award-winning production of Jesus Christ Superstar is transferring to the Barbican Theatre for 60 performances in the summer next year. The show, which had huge success in 2016 and 2017 at the Open Air Theatre, will open on 4 July.

Ian McKellen will celebrate his 80th with an 80 venue tour

Ian McKelln On Stage. Photo credit: Oliver Rosser, Feast Creative

Ian McKellen is planning to spend his 80th year on the planet touring the UK. He will be taking his brand new solo show to 80 venues around the UK including many in the West End and outer London. The show will be a mixture of anecdotes, performance and audience interaction and it kicks off in January.

Theatre Spot Test: The “Try Not To Sing Along” Challenge

Les Misérables at Queen's Theatre

This week’s quiz is an oldie but a goodie. We’re challenging theatre fans far and wide to plug their headphones in, suppress their natural instincts, and tackle our “Try Not To Sing Along” Challenge! Below is a list of absolute-must-sing-along-doesn’t-matter-where-you-are musical theatre classics. Your challenge: don’t.

There was plenty of other news this week. To see what else you missed, click here.

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chicago everybody's talking about jamie ian mckellen rip it up - the 60s school of rock the musical