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Autumn Fever: Top 10 Off-West End Theatre Shows
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Autumn Fever: Top 10 Off-West End Theatre Shows

Picture of Anouszka Tate
Updated: 25 April 2016
The world-class standard of London’s West End shows means they attract theatregoers from across the globe. However, dare to venture out a little and you’ll find that proximity to central London has, in fact, little effect on quality of productions. This autumn, take time to explore the bright lights of Off-West End theatre because these shows have extremely bright futures.
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National Theatre — Jane Eyre

8 September 2015 – 10 January 2016

After playing at Bristol Old Vic, director Sally Cookson’s interpretation of Jane Eyre is playing at the National Theatre until 10th January. Almost 170 years on, Charlotte Brontë’s story of the trailblazing Jane is as inspiring as ever. This bold and dynamic production uncovers one woman’s fight for freedom and fulfilment on her own terms. The spirited heroine faces life’s obstacles head on, surviving poverty, injustice and the discovery of bitter betrayal before taking the ultimate decision to follow her heart.

National Theatre, South Bank, London, UK, +44 20 7452 3000

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National Theatre — Husbands and Sons

19 October 2015 – 10 February 2016

It’s a busy autumn for actress Anne-Marie Duff. Not only is she promoting her silver screen feature film Suffragette but also starring in the National Theatre’s Husbands and Sons. Opening in the Dorfman Theatre on 19th October, the play interweaves three of D H Lawrence’s greatest dramas: The Daughter-in-Law, A Collier’s Friday Night and The Widowing of Mrs Holroyd. The show tells the heartrending stories of the wives and mothers of a small village as they struggle to hold their working-class families together.

National Theatre, South Bank, London, UK, +44 20 7452 3000

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National Theatre — wonder.land

27 November 2015 – 30 April 2016

Another National Theatre show inspired by a literary classic, wonder.land is a new musical based on Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland. In the virtual world of wonder.land, audiences are invited to be whoever they want to be. Protagonist Aly is bullied at school and is unhappy at home but is able to escape online. Here, she is Alice. She is brave, beautiful and in control. Inevitable danger ensues as curiosity causes real life and wonder.land to collide. With music by Damon Albarn and book and lyrics by Moira Buffini, the show opens in the Olivier Theatre on 2nd December.

National Theatre, South Bank, London, UK, +44 20 7452 3000

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The Barbican — Out Of India

21 October – 24 October 2015

A long way from the Americanised jazz hands of London’s West End, Out of India is a trilogy that features contemporary choreography with a striking perspective on modern Indian life. Beginning its short run at The Barbican on 21st October, Out Of India is a long way from either the classical or Bollywood dance styles you might expect. One duet is a political take on India’s rapid urbanisation — an idiosyncratic solo dancer pulls apart the classical dance form Bharatanatyam, and five men incorporate martial arts to depict corruption and suffering in Manipur.

The Barbican, Silk St, London, UK, +44 20 7638 4141

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The Barbican — Henry V

7 November – 30 December 2015

Following successful productions of Richard II and Henry IV Parts I & II, the RSC continues Shakespeare’s stories this autumn with Henry V. Playing at The Barbican in the 600th anniversary year of the Battle of Agincourt, Henry V tells the story of the new King of England as he struggles to leave behind his rebellious youth, striving to gain the respect of his nobility and people. The show opens on 7th November.

The Barbican, Silk St, London, UK, +44 20 7638 4141

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The Richmond Theatre — Avenue Q

27 October – 31 October 2015

A smash both on Broadway and in the West End, award-winning musical comedy Avenue Q will be bringing a whole host of fuzzy friends to The Richmond Theatre on 27th October. Featuring the naughtiest puppets in town, the musical about growing up, dreaming big and finding your purpose will have you crying with laughter.

The Richmond Theatre, Little Green, Richmond, UK, +44 844 871 7651

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New Wimbledon Theatre — Dirty Rotten Scoundrels

20 October – 24 October 2015

Another West End success, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels is now on the road with a new all-star cast. Featuring former Hearsay singer Noel Sullivan, Hollyoaks actress Carley Stenson, and comedian Gary Wilmot, the show opens at New Wimbledon Theatre on 20th October. It’s only staying put for five nights, so book tickets quickly to join the half a million theatregoers who have already enjoyed this musical comedy!

New Wimbledon Theatre, 93 The Broadway, London, UK, +44 20 8545 7900

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New Wimbledon Theatre — Hairspray

2 November – 7 November 2015

Back on tour and heading to New Wimbledon Theatre this winter is Hairspray. Yet another star-studded cast for the south London venue, Benidorm’s Tony Maudsley, X Factor’s Brenda Edwards and Brookside’s Claire Sweeney all take centre stage from 2nd November. Bursting with colour and beaming with energy, for many, this is musical theatre in its truest form.

New Wimbledon Theatre, 93 The Broadway, London, UK, +44 20 8545 7900

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New Wimbledon Theatre — An Inspector Calls

24 November – 28 November 2015

Continuing its season of spectacular shows, New Wimbledon Theatre will also play host to An Inspector Calls from 24th November. From Stephen Daldry, the Oscar-nominated director of The Reader, The Hours and Billy Elliot, comes the multi-award winning West End production of J.B. Priestley’s classic thriller. With its wildly imaginative staging, evocative score and chilling suspense, An Inspector Calls has won more awards than any other play in history.

New Wimbledon Theatre, 93 The Broadway, London, UK, +44 20 8545 7900

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Menier Chocolate Factory — Funny Girl

20 November 2015 – 5 March 2016

Award-winning actress Sheridan Smith has become the nation’s sweetheart after world-class performances on both the big and small screen. She now returns to the stage to play Fanny Brice in a major new revival of Funny Girl. Opening on 2nd December at Menier Chocolate Factory, this is the first time the show has been on a London stage since 1966. Set in New York, Funny Girl features now-classic songs like ‘People,’ ‘You Are Woman, I Am Man,‘ and ‘Don’t Rain On My Parade.

Menier Chocolate Factory, 53 Southwark Street, London, UK, +44 20 7378 1713