The Ten Most Successful Shows in London’s West End
Whether you’re a huge fan of the theatre or just like to catch a show every now and then, you’re in for a treat this year in London’s West End. With so many incredible new and returning musicals and shows, it can be difficult to choose which shows to purchase tickets to see. Whether you want to watch the latest production that everyone is talking about or finally see a classic, beloved musical, there are plenty of options in London’s West End.
We have rounded up a comprehensive list of the ten most successful shows in London’s West End to help you experience the best musicals and shows in London’s West End. Buy your tickets online at Ticket Here for guaranteed availability!
The Lion King
If you only watch one show this summer (though we encourage you to see as many as you can), watch The Lion King. Disney’s internationally celebrated classic is brought to life in a theatrical event like no other, making it one of the ten most successful shows in London’s West End. This heart wrenching and moving film has been brilliantly reimagined for the stage by acclaimed director Julie Taymor.
The Lion King is a powerful and moving tale of the lion cub Simba and his journey to become King of the Pridelands, told through stunning visual effects, enchanting music, and bold costumes. Bring the entire family to follow Simba’s epic adventure and marvel at the rich colours and intricate set designs that make this show one of the top grossing and longest running in London’s West End.
This “Wicked” spin on The Wizard of Oz is back in the 16th year at the Apollo Victoria Theatre as it tells the story of L. Frank Baum’s beloved characters and their journeys to become Glinda the Good and the Wicked Witch of the West. As one of the longest-running West End musicals, Wicked has been seen by more than 10 million people in London in its more than 6,000 performances.
Winner of over 100 international theatre awards, including three Tony Awards, two Olivier Awards, and a Grammy Award, this classic musical imagines a backstory rife with the decision and events that shape the lives of two university friends in a magical world full of colour and drama. Although Wicked has made its appearance at theatres around the world, its long history, magical plot, and ensemble make it one of the ten most successful shows in London’s West End
Les Misérables is undisputedly one of the world’s most popular musicals and easily one of the ten most successful shows in London’s West End. Seen by over 130 million people in 53 countries and 22 languages, this production’s score features moving and noteworthy songs such as “I Dreamed a Dream”, “On My Own”, “Bring Him Home”, “One Day More”, “Master Of The House” and many more.
Experience what has been lauded as “perfect theatre in a perfect theatre” (Sunday Telegraph), “Les Mis for the 21st Century” (Huffington Post), and “a reborn dream of a production” (Daily Telegraph). Brilliant new staging from Cameron Mackintosh transforms Boublil and Schönberg’s Les Misérables into a modern and moving experience at London’s Sondheim Theatre.
The Phantom of the Opera
Since The Phantom of the Opera first opened at Her Majesty’s Theatre on October 9, 1986, it has gone on to become one of the highest-grossing musicals of all time and one of the ten most successful shows in London’s West End. Returning to Her Majesty’s Theatre London, Andrew Lloyd Webber’s The Phantom of the Opera combines a mesmerizing musical score and stunning scenery with modern special effects to bring its tragic love story to life.
Beneath the Paris Opera House, the Phantom hides in a shadowed existence. Though he is feared and shamed by all for his physical appearance, the Phantom is moved by his love for singer Christine Daaé. Winner of over 70 major theatre awards and seen by more than 140 million people worldwide, you won’t want to miss the chance to experience The Phantom of the Opera and one of the West End’s most enduring love stories.
Brilliantly adapted from the book series by P.L Travers and the original Disney film, Mary Poppins is a multi-award-winning musical showing at the Prince Edward Theatre. Perfect for the for the whole family, Cameron Mackintosh and Julian Fellowes’ production follows the magical story of everyone’s favourite nanny and the wonder and joy she brings to life.
features a timeless score of classic songs, including Jolly Holiday, Step in Time, Feed the Birds, Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious, and new songs from the Olivier award-winning team of George Stiles and Anthony Drewe, including Practically Perfect. Discover the rousing choreography, special effects, and classic songs that have made Marry Poppins one of the ten most successful shows in London’s West End.
Sun, fun, and feel-good music round out the smash-hit musical that is Mamma Mia! Based on the songs of ABBA composed by Benny Andersson and Björn Ulvaeus, Mamma Mia! is a jukebox musical written by British playwright Catherine Johnson. This production has been watched by more than 65 million viewers worldwide and has a long running history in London’s West End of over 23 years, making it a strong choice in the ten most successful shows in London’s West End.
Mamma Mia! is now a worldwide phenomenon with two hit movies and a cult-following of people having the time of their lives. This tale of a mother-daughter relationship strained by the question of which of three potential dads is the father is set on an idyllic Greek island that provides a stunning backdrop to a musical, magical, and festive show that you won’t want to miss.
The Book of Mormon
For those who have been living under a rock, The Book of Mormon has become a theatrical phenomenon and well-deserved success both on Broadway and in London’s West End. While it may not have as long of a history as some of London’s other famous musicals, The Book of Mormon has easily become one of the ten most successful shows in London’s West End in recent years.
Winner of 9 Tony Awards, including Best Musical, and a Grammy Award for Best Musical Theatre Album, The Book of Mormon showcases Mormon dogma in a fun, thought-provoking, and potentially offensive manner. The musical production tells the story of two Mormons from Salt Lake City, Utah that have been sent as missionaries to Uganda. Instead of the easy converts they are expecting, the men encounter many harsh realities outside of their sheltered bubble–including a hostile warlord. Join audiences in weeping with laughter and singing along to the incredible score while watching this musical like no other.
Experience the aftermath of a whirlwind summer romance during senior year between leather wearing greaser Danny and the girl next door, Sandy, at London’s Dominion Theatre in this musical adaptation of the classic film Grease. With hits such as Summer Nights, You’re the One That I Want, Greased Lightnin’, and Hopelessly Devoted to You, this production is more electrifying that ever before.
Back in London’s West End from May 2022, this production only lasts 26 weeks, making it a must-see musical from Director Nikolai Foster and renown choreographer Arlene Phillips. See if Danny and Sandy can survive the trials and tribulations of teenage love in this flash to the past, complete with incredible costumes, sets, and a subversion of common tropes of 1950s.
Dear Evan Hansen
Part of a new generation of musicals, Dear Evan Hansen has been touted as “the most vital and important musical of a generation” (Daily Mail) with a “a raw, relevant and exhilarating score” (BBC Radio London). Winner of 3 Olivier Awards, including Best New Musical, Best Original Score, and Best Actor, Dear Evan Hansen is a production about struggling to connect with others in a hyperconnected world.
This highly awarded musical is also the winner of a Critics’ Circle Theatre Award and two WhatsOnStage Awards, showing that audiences and critics alike find Dear Evan Hansen to be a moving portrayal of contemporary adolescence. Join Evan as he navigates the deeply personal aspects of friendships, family, relationships, and mental health in this production that takes its place as one of the ten most successful shows in London’s West End.
Jukebox musical hit Jersey Boys returns to London’s West End in 2022 at the new Trafalgar Theatre. The Olivier, Tony, and Grammy Award winning show tells the story of Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons–four guys from New Jersey that had a sound that nobody had ever heard of, and everybody couldn’t get enough of. Listen to hits such as Beggin’, Sherry, Walk Like A Man, Big Girls Don’t Cry, Can’t Take My Eyes Off You, and more.
While the groups onstage harmonies were perfect, offstage they experience the trials and tribulations of finding their identity as a group, rising to stardom, legal troubles, and trying to make their respective relationships work. Follow the Jersey Boys from the streets of New Jersey to their induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and witness every moment in between.
Delve into pure escapism for all ages as young Matilda captivates audiences and changes her own destiny. This captivating musical, based on the original and much-loved story by Ronal Dahl, revels in the power of childhood imagination, intellect, and bravery in the face of adversity. The Royal Shakespeare Company’s world première production continues to play to packed houses at London’s Cambridge Theatre and it’s a show you won’t want to miss.
A combination of direction from Matthew Warchus, original songs by comedian Tim Minchin, a book by Dennis Kelly, and one of the best casts in the show’s history makes Matilda one of the ten most successful shows in London’s West End. Book your tickets for Matilda online now at Ticket Here to see why this show has warmed the hearts of millions of people.