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Jamie Ballard (Photo credit: Manuel Harlan)

London Theatre News Today: Tuesday 6 July

First Published 6 July 2021, Last Updated 7 July 2021

Kiran Landa from Theatre Royal Stratford East’s Extinct joins us on Theatre Chat Live

Tune into Theatre Chat Live tonight at 6pm on Official London Theatre’s Instagram where Jess will be joined by Kiran Landa, who is making her Stratford East debut in Extinct, a brand new one-woman play.

A woman stands alone on stage. She has one hour to change our future. One hour to avert a catastrophe. She’ll give everything she has.

Written by April De Angelis and directed by Kirsty Housley, the urgent new play takes on the climate emergency head on using a tapestry of testimonials from environmental activists.

Kiran has previously starred in War Horse (National Theatre UK and International Tour), Primetime (Royal Court Theatre), Great Expectations (ETT/Watford Palace Theatre), Arabian Nights (RSC), Dov and Ali (Theatre 503). You may also recognise her from TV with her credits including Ackley Bridge, 4 O’Clock Club, Line of Duty, Hollyoaks, Scott and Bailey, Doctors, Wire in the Blood and her film credits include Jadoo: Kings of Curry and Shoot on Sight.

Tune in at 6pm to find out more about Kiran, her role in Extinct, how it feels to return #BackOnstage, plus more!


Harry Potter and the Cursed Child to reopen from 14 October

Today, the producers of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, Sonia Friedman Productions, Colin Callender and Harry Potter Theatrical Productions are delighted to confirm that the original two-part multi award-winning production will resume performances at the Palace Theatre in London on 14 October 2021.  After over a year and a half of shutdown due to the pandemic, rehearsals for the West End production will begin this August.

Jamie Ballard, who is returning to the title role of Harry Potter, said on behalf of the entire Company: “We are all so excited to be coming back to the magical world of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child and have utterly missed being at the beautiful Palace Theatre as a family doing what we love. There is nothing quite as special as being able to share that unique experience with our wonderful audiences. It will be an absolute joy for us to perform for them once again and to welcome them back to our very own Hogwarts

Producers Sonia Friedman and Colin Callender said: “Re-opening Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Parts One and Two in the West End and being part of the return of British Theatre makes us both happy and proud. To be back at the original home ofHarry Potter and the Cursed Child – the mothership – with our incredibly talented and committed company and welcoming back our audiences after such a devastating and prolongedclosure will be emotional and thrilling for all of us. 

“The world premiere of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child in 2016 at London’s Palace Theatre was such an extraordinary, historic moment in British theatre and it was just the beginning of the most incredible and unexpected journey for our show.  It’s an exceptional local and global success story and we are so grateful to everyone who has come along for the ride, particularly those who will see us re-open in October. 

“We would like to thank all of our audience members and ticket holders for the unwavering loyalty, passion and love they have poured into our show. This has helped keep our spirits going and our industry alive these past months. We are incredibly excited to bring the original, record-breaking, two-part play event back to London with this chapter promising to be just as astonishing as when we first opened – if not more so – as we will never again take for granted live theatre and the shared experience. It’s an absolute privilege and honour to say we’ll see you soon.”

“19 years after Harry, Ron, and Hermione saved the wizarding world, they’re back on a most extraordinary new adventure – this time, joined by a brave new generation that has only just arrived at the legendary Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Prepare for spectacular spells, a mind-blowing race through time, and an epic battle to stop mysterious forces, all while the future hangs in the balance.”

Joining Jamie Ballard as Harry Potter are Susie Trayling as Ginny Potter and Dominic Short who plays their son Albus Potter. Thomas Aldridge returns as Ron Weasley with Michelle Gayle as Hermione Granger and Phoenix Edwards as their daughter Rose Granger-Weasley.  Also returning to play Draco Malfoy is James Howard with Luke Sumner as his son Scorpius Malfoy.  Further casting will be announced at a later date.

The original production of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, one play presented in two parts, is the eighth story in the Harry Potter series and the first official Harry Potter story to be presented on stage.  The critically acclaimed production received its world premiere in July 2016 at the Palace Theatre in London.  The most awarded new play in theatre history, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child has won 24 major theatre awards in the UK and is the most awarded play in the history of the Olivier Awards, winning a record-breaking nine awards including Best New Play.  The production has also won 25 major US awards with six Tony Awards including Best Play.


Theatre Royal Stratford East today announces the full casting for Shining City, directed by Artistic Director Nadia Fall.

Curtis-Lee Ashqar, Michelle Fox and Rory Keenan are joining the previously announced Brendan Coyle in this first London revival since premiering at the Royal Court in 2004 to critical acclaim.

Dublin, Ireland. John, recently bereaved, believes himself to be haunted by the ghost of his dead wife. Plagued by secrets, he slowly reveals his story and his truth to Ian – a psychotherapist and former priest who has lost his faith. As the two men struggle to make sense of their place in the world, they are bound in ways they could never have imagined and forced to question the very nature of reality itself.

Written by Olivier Award-winning playwright Conor McPherson (The Weir, The Seafarer), Shining City is a poignant and unsettling exploration of guilt, loneliness and the spaces between us. Playing at the Theatre Royal Stratford East from 17 September – 23 October, this show is well worth booking.

Enjoy free performances at Disney’s on stage Summer Pop-Up Experience

Cleveland Cathnott as MUFASA (Photo by Deen Van Meer)

From 22 July to 30 August, in the heart of London’s West End and bigger than ever before, there will be a Disney on Stage Summer Pop-Up Experience celebrating the wealth of Disney titles produced for the stage. The free-to-access Pop-Up, open to fans of all ages, features Disney shows such as FrozenThe Lion KingMary Poppins, Beauty and the Beast, and Aladdin.

Located in the historic Carriage Hall on Floral Street, this is the third time that Disney Theatrical Productions, working with Covent Garden, will create a unique space that is a celebration of the very best of Disney in the West End, across the UK and on Broadway.

Disney Stage Pop-up

Visitors will go on an enchanting journey through some of Disney’s most iconic worlds, with new things to see and explore with every step. First, visitors will travel to early-1900s London with Disney and Cameron Mackintosh’s Mary Poppins and witness the delights of Mrs Corry’s Sweet Shop, where they can enjoy some craft activities and discover how to spell the longest word they’ve ever heard. Guests will experience the magic carpet ride of Aladdin’s Cave of Wonders, with the chance to pose with the Genie’s Lamp and travel back to a retro era with classic Aladdin arcade games – although there is no magic lamp to be won here! The tale as old as time continues with Beauty and the Beast, featuring the legendary enchanted rose.

Visitors will have the opportunity to view iconic masks, puppets and costumes from the Tony® Award-winning The Lion King, getting a unique behind-the-scenes glimpse into the stunning stagecraft of this much loved production, now in its 22nd year in London. It’s time to open up the gates on the long-awaited West End premiere of Frozen, where visitors will have the chance to experience the chilly heights of Elsa’s ice palace, and the majestic delights of Arendelle Castle. For a limited time only, there will be the opportunity to see Elsa’s stunning Ice Dress up-close and marvel at this iconic gown, soon to be worn on stage.

Samantha Barks (Elsa) and Stephanie McKeon (Anna) in Disney’s Frozen (Photo by Trevor Leighton)

Fiona Pearce, Marketing Director at Disney Theatrical Productions said today, “This year, more than ever, it felt important to bring the joy of Disney’s stage shows back where they belong in the West End, spotlighting each in our first ever walk-through experience. Free for everyone, this Pop-Up for all ages, is a much-needed dose of fun where guests can enjoy the craft and beauty of our productions. Come, Be Our Guest.”

Catherine Riccomini, Director of Marketing and Communications, Capco Covent Garden, added, “Covent Garden is world famous as the heart of theatre land in London and we are delighted to once again be the home of the Disney on Stage Summer Pop-Up experience. We look forward to welcoming visitors, and invite them to stay and discover everything our open air pedestrianised district and indoor entertainment has to offer this Summer – from shopping, to dining, theatres, culture and more”

Those visiting the Disney on Stage Pop-Up are encouraged to stay and explore everything that Covent Garden has to offer – from a Summer Festival Terrace serving Spritzes, street food and daily live music, to ROH Unlocked, a partnership with the Royal Opera House delighting guests with surprise performances and workshops for all ages to enjoy. Visitors wanting to dine can enjoy global and independent restaurants, with indoor and outdoor dining available, as well as the very best fashion, beauty and lifestyle stores including Tiffany & Co., Ganni, A.P.C, American Vintage, Vashi, toys from Pollock’s, Apple and more.

Running from 22 July – 30 August, theatre fans are encouraged to reserve a free timeslot in advance online via https://www.disneytickets.co.uk/popup

Please note: A limited number of walk-ups will be available each day


Young Vic announces cast for upcoming shows Klippies and AI

Bola Akeju and Elizabeth Dulau take the roles of Thandi and Yolandi in Klippies, directed by Genesis Future Directors Award recipient Diyan Zora. Set in the twentieth year of South Africa’s democracy, two girls struggle to navigate their troubled past.

Meanwhile, AI, a new play developed by Chinonyerem Odimba and Nina Segal alongside artificial intelligence, will star cast members Waleed Akhtar, Tyrone Huggins and Simone Saunders. Together with insights into how the artists collaborated with the system, AI asks us to consider the algorithms at work in the world around us, the nature of creativity and what technology can teach us about ourselves.


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