Friday, 4 January 2013

Shows to be Seen in Twenty Thirteen (and how to get affordable tickets)

It’s time to emerge from the Christmas cocoon, blink in the cold light of normality and get back to reality.

As 2013 begins, my wall planner from ‘The Stage’ paper goes up with lots of fresh, blank spaces yet to be filled. So my question to start the year off with is – what to see?

I have a couple of shows lined up already – Woman in Black at Swansea Grand Theatre (23rd Feb), Ghost on Tour at the Wales Millennium Centre (20th April) and Rent in Concert at St David’s Hall (29th April).

As of yet, no West End shows.

There are quite a few shows I’m particularly keen to see though. Here are the top 5 that I hope to be able to tick off the list:-

  1.  Rock of Ages – Garrick (opens 18th Jan)
  2.  A Chorus Line – Palladium (previews – 2nd Feb; opens – 19th Feb)
  3. The Book of Mormon – Prince of Wales Theatre (previews – 25th Feb ; opens – 21st March)
  4. Singing in the Rain – Palace Theatre
  5. Once – Phoenix Theatre (from 16th March)

Usually, my first trip to London is at the beginning of February to coincide with my birthday and usually I’d have this readily booked by now. However, I can’t help but notice the soaring cost of everything (particularly the recent rail fare inflation) while wages are going nowhere... except maybe down.

This, therefore, could be the year of going to London without pre-booking shows and, instead, getting tickets on the day. It can be risky business but I have actually discovered some shows this way that I may not have otherwise have seen; Shows that I’ve fallen in love with, like Lord of the Rings and Ghost. So, if you’re considering this method be open minded!

The way I usually get my last minute tickets is from the TKTs booth in Leicester square where you can purchase top price tickets for half price! So if you’re willing, this is an excellent way to save. Please only use this booth though. There are many unofficial ones set up by ticket touts all around London and you never know whether you’re being swindled from these – AVOID.

The other method is dayseating which has been recommended for me to try. I’ve never dayseated before so I wasn’t sure how to go about this but twitterer @steffi_g tells me if you turn up at the theatre’s box office at about 9.30am (earlier on a Saturday) there are usually tickets kept aside for this reason – this is a good method if there’s a particular show you want to see but haven’t booked in advance.

Another option is to use websites that do great offers and cheap tickets. I put the feelers out for some good ones on twitter earlier and fellow bloggers @steffi_g and @justsamssister came up with the following trustworthy, reliable websites:-

This way you have more control over what show to see as you’re not relying on what’s available on the day.

(Give both these lovely ladies a follow on twitter – they are avid theatre fans, full of useful information and lovely to chat with – and pay a visit to their blogs and

I’d love to know what shows you’re all excited for this year and if you have any recommendations of your own on how to grab some theatre bargains, please do let me know. 


  1. Thanks for the shoutout Jaclyn! Much appreciated and I hope others enjoy reading our various blogs as much as we like writing them. I look forward to reading more from you :)

  2. Love the planner, very jealous! My birthday is in Feb too and have my trip booked. I used 'cheapest fare finder' on virgin trains and actually got a not bad price. You should give day seating a go, i've only done it a few times, but it's always worked out well.


  3. No problem, Naomi. I would have felt bad if I didn't link to you both since you helped me out with finding those websites.

    Siobhan - just realised I haven't linked to your blog. Will rectify this now. When in Feb is your birthday and what have you booked to see? I'm going to try dayseating for Rock of Ages, I think. Last time I went to London I managed to get some train tickets for half the normal price, but it's a rarity with first great western.

    1. Aw thank you, I'm going to start getting more into blogging this year. Feb 18th. Seeing lift and Glasgow Girls, going to try and fit in another show too but undecided on which one. D'ya think you'll make it down net month?

    2. I hope so. Gonna be winging it this time lol. Lift has kinda passed me by - I'm gonna have to listen to some songs from that, I know you have a feature on it on your blog.

  4. Yeah you should try and catch it. Some tickets are only £12 is looks like its gonna be awesome. Cracking cast too. For some reason I don't fancy the Book of Mormon but it seems really popular so might need to research it :) x