Updated: Mar 10
Theatre productions the bee is most excited to watch this February, and the cheapest ways to get tickets
If you're wondering what to watch at the theatre in London this month, you've come to the right place. Theatre Bee is pleased to share its top picks for the month. Reviews for these shows will be published after the bee has had a chance to watch them. If the bee has something to say about them, that is.
Note that the show titles below link to the official show website so that you get the latest show descriptions, cast and creative listings, show dates and timings. But bear in mind that the official site may not be the cheapest place to buy tickets. For cheap ticket tips, scroll to the end of this post. Also, if you come across a broken link below, it's most likely because the show has ended its run.
Three must-watch plays at the National Theatre this February
The National Theatre's line up is particularly exciting this month. Yes, National Theatre productions are usually expensive, what with their beautifully swanky auditoriums, perfect acoustics, unfettered views of the stage even from the worst seats. Not to mention the tremendous artistic prestige that National Theatre productions carry. But don't despair, the bee wouldn't be recommending shows unless it could afford those shows itself. Check out the bee's guide to £10 pp tickets for National Theatre productions!
For your monthly fix of Seneca, Greek mythology and tragedy interspersed with Roman stoic philosophy, Phaedra is your go-to play. Originally written by Seneca as far back as 54 A.D., the rendition of Phaedra playing at the National Theatre this month (through 8 April 2023) is a striking reimagination by Simon Stone. But be warned - this play is intense, both in terms of emotional substance and production elements. The play's official page warns the audience about offensive language, nudity, graphic violence, self harm, suicide depictions and periods of sustained darkness of up to 45 seconds throughout the performance.
A critically-acclaimed Tony Award winner for Best Play, The Lehman Trilogy is a drama about three generations of Lehmans, the family behind the Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. company that collapsed into bankruptcy in 2008, and whose collapse triggered a system-wide collapse of major financial institutions and plunged the world into the infamous global financial crisis. The story spans an astonishing 164 years that's sure to leave you reeling from the richness of detail in the storytelling (if you're prepared to sit through a 3 hours and 20 minutes-long performance that includes 2 intervals).
Feel like watching a new award-winning British musical? Standing at the Sky's Edge comes to London for the first time on 9 Feb 2023 and runs through 25 March 2023. It is an intergenerational drama that follows its characters for six turbulent decades, exploring how the hopes and dreams of these characters evolve over time, and how British society as a whole evolves over this time.
Last chance to catch these limited run shows
Last chance to catch this hilarious play, which finishes its strictly limited run at Noel Coward Theatre on 18 Feb 2023. This is the go-to play for a fix of spirited (and hilarious) debates between a liberal maverick and his antithetic right-wing traditionalist. Set in 1968, we see how TV debates originated and gained popularity, especially between political opponents. And the rapid, inevitable degeneration of informed debate into childish bickering, of course.
If you haven't watched it yet, you have until 20 May 2023 to catch this iconic, unmissable classic. Aaron Sorkin's adaptation of Harper Lee's To Kill A Mockingbird is a play packed with heightened emotion, moral quandaries and heart-wrenching tragedy. Each actor in this show is spectacular and deserves a standing ovation for their distinctive performances. A state-of-the-nation play that rivetingly exposes the cultural zeitgeist in 1936, a period that is especially significant because it is caught between a rock and a hard place (the Great Depression just a few years before, and the Second World War to follow shortly after). For more of the bee's rants and reflections on this story, check out the bee's review of To Kill A Mockingbird.
Top Off West End picks
The bee is most excited about the following Off West End and fringe shows.
A couple of these shows are scheduled to open this March or later, so while you can't watch them just yet, you can get steeply discounted tickets if you book now. If you can plan your visit a couple of months in advance, now is a great time to lock in a ticket at a low price on Official London Theatre Sale event page. But be quick, because the sale ends 10 Feb 2023.
Book ahead of time for big savings on highly anticipated shows - Where to find cheap theatre tickets this February
It is not too late to buy tickets for as little as £10 from the Official London Theatre Sale event. This massive sale event ends 10 February 2023, so make sure to get your tickets before then for your February and March theatre visits. The sale offers tickets for £10, £20, £30, £40 and £50 pp.
For mainstream West End theatre productions, £10 tickets is as cheap as they are ever going to get. (But know that these seats are likely to be the absolute worst in the house. Think seventh floor balcony, restricted view seat that's a mile away from the stage. On the bright side, these awful seats would have cost £20-30 on a regular day, so you are saving quite a bit of money through the OLT sale.) For £50 pp, you can get amazing stalls seats that might have cost about a £100 or even more outside of the sale event!
If you plan to visit the National Theatre (or a production of the National Theatre playing elsewhere), don't forget to read Theatre Bee's guide to get amazing seats - including stalls seats - for as little as £10!