20+ brilliant new musicals you need to know about
Musical theatre is thriving in the UK and to prove it, here we round up some of the brand new shows in the works.
From development runs and concerts to fully staged productions, here are some 20+ new musicals you need to know about…
Alan Turing – A Musical Biography
Composed by Joel Goodman and Jan Osborne, with a new script by Joan Greening, Alan Turing – A Musical Biography is a journey through the extraordinary professional and personal life of World War II codebreaker and the father of theoretical computer science, Alan Turing. A production runs at the Edinburgh Fringe this summer from 5 – 19 August (excluding 13) at Paradise in Augustines – The Sanctuary. Book tickets here
Written and directed by Abey Bradbury, JULIE is a brand new original musical telling the life and adventures of historical LGBTQ+ icon Julie D’Aubigny. Following a recent UK tour, the show will play London’s The Other Palace from 25 – 30 July. Book tickets here.
Fury and Elysium
Fury and Elysium is a new queer, revolutionary musical that celebrates and places centre stage the lives of three iconic Jewish women: writers, political revolutionaries and artists. With a book by Stephanie Martin (Juniper and Jules, Soho Theatre; Passion Fruit, New Diorama Theatre) and music and lyrics by renowned singer-songwriter Calista Kazuko Georget, the show recently ran at The Other Palace. Watch this space for more news!
Hello Kitty Must Die
Based on the hugely successful cult novel by Kate Kamen (Angela S. Choi), Hello Kitty Must Die will run at Pleasance Courtyard (Pleasance Two) at this summer’s Edinburgh Fringe from 2 – 27 August 2023 (excluding 8, 15 and 22). A thrilling story by an Asian American woman, about an Asian American woman brought to life by Asian American women, the new musical features a score by award-winning composer Cecilia Lin and lyricist Jessica Wu and has been co-adapted by Gail Rastorfer and Kurt Johns. Book tickets
For Tonight uniquely blends, for the first time on stage, the rich and distinct traditions, language and culture of the Welsh and Romani peoples in a stirring journey exploring the power and meaning of home. For Tonight has a book and score by Shenelle Salcido & Spencer Williams, inspired by Williams’ third great grandfather’s handwritten journal set in the mid-1800s in North Wales. The show will run in concert in the West End this September with tickets on sale now.
The Little Big Things
Based on the best-selling memoir by Henry Fraser. The Little Big Things will run @sohoplace from 2 September – 25 November 2023. The musical has music by Nick Butcher (Loved Before), lyrics by Nick Butcher and Tom Ling (Techies: The Musical), a book by Joe White (Blackout Songs), and is directed by Luke Sheppard (& Juliet). Book tickets here.
Public – The Musical
New rock musical Public – The Musical will run at this year’s Edinburgh Fringe Festival. At Pleasance Courtyard (Pleasance Two) from 2 – 28 August 2023 (excluding 9 and 21). Telling the story of four strangers locked in a gender-neutral toilet for an hour, the piece comes from queer-led theatre collective Stroud and Notes an original musical company conceived by queer singer-songwriter, Kyla Stroud, winner of London’s Busk In London Competition, and composer, co-writer and co-producer of the show. Book tickets
Featuring the music of Roy Orbison, In Dreams is currently making its world premiere at Leeds Playhouse. The new musical is written by Emmy and Golden Globe-winning and Olivier Award-nominated David West Read and is directed by multi-award winning Luke Sheppard, reuniting the pair following their success with & Juliet. Book tickets here.
Written by Jack Williams and Freya Catrin Smith, Ride tells the story of Annie Londonderry, the first woman to cycle around the world. An original cast recording was released in June ahead of the show’s return to London at Southwark Playhouse Elephant from 19 July. Book tickets
To Wong Foo The Musical
To Wong Foo The Musical will make its world premiere at Manchester’s Hope Mill Theatre this autumn Based on the 1995 ground-breaking film, To Wong Foo Thanks for Everything Julie Newmar, the show has a book and direction by original film screenplay writer Douglas Carter Beane, with music and lyrics by Lewis Flinn. Book tickets
The Time Traveller’s Wife
New musical The Time Traveller’s Wife is to open in London’s West end this autumn. Based on the best-selling novel by Audrey Niffenegger and the New Line Cinema film screenplay by Bruce Joel Rubin, the show will run at the Apollo Theatre from 7 October 2023. The musical, with music and lyrics by Joss Stone and Dave Stewart, made its world premiere at Storyhouse in Chester last year. Book tickets for the West End run here.
Close Up – The Twiggy Musical
Elena Skye is to star as Twiggy in the world premiere of Close Up – The Twiggy Musical. Based on the life of model Dame Lesley Lawson – aka Twiggy – the new show has been written and directed by Ben Elton. The world premiere production will run from 18 September at the Menier Chocolate Factory. Book tickets now.
National Theatre and the Roald Dahl Story Company are to team up on a new musical adaptation of The Witches. Directed by Lyndsey Turner (The Crucible), the musical has a book and lyrics by Olivier Award-winner Lucy Kirkwood (Mosquitoes) and music and lyrics by Tony Award-nominee Dave Malloy (Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812). The premiere production will run in the Olivier theatre from 7 November. Book tickets.
Treason features a folk-pop score with music and lyrics by Ricky Allan and tells the story of the notorious gunpowder plot of 1605. The musical was first streamed online during the pandemic before concert performances at Cadogan Hall and Theatre Royal Drury Lane in the West End. The show will make its fully staged premiere with a UK tour this autumn.
Then, Now & Next
New musical Then, Now & Next is currently making its world premiere at London’s Southwark Playhouse. The piece is written by Christopher J Orton (My Land’s Shore) and Jon Robyns (currently playing the Phantom in The Phantom of the Opera) in a first-time collaboration for the pair. Directed by Julie Atherton (Ordinary Days) and starring Alice Fearn (Come From Away, Wicked), the production from Paul Virides Productions runs to 29 July. Book tickets
New British musical Halls is currently being staged at London’s The Turbine Theatre with a new development production running to 30 July. With music and lyrics by George Stroud and Jennifer Harrison, Halls follows eight, first year, university students from all different backgrounds and upbringings who are brought together when they’re allocated the same flat in their Halls of Residence. Book tickets.
Rock Follies comes to Chichester Festival Theatre from 24 July as part of its 2023 season. The musical has a book by Chloë Moss and original songs from the TV series by Howard Schuman and Andy Mackay. The production will be helmed b Dominic Cooke, former Artistic Director of the Royal Court.
New musical BED is to run at Edinburgh Festival Fringe at Gilded Balloon Teviot’s Sportsmans space from 2 – 28 August (excluding 14 and 21). BED is the first sung through musical from writers Tim Anfilogoff and Alan Whittaker who have previously collaborated on several other shows, most recently San Domino. Book tickets.
Sinatra The Musical
Sinatra The Musical will make its world premiere at Birmingham Rep this autumn from 23 September. Tony Award winner Matt Doyle will lead the cast with the musical brought to the stage by writer Joe DiPietro (What’s New Pussycat? and Memphis) and director & choreographer Kathleen Marshall (Anything Goes and The Pajama Game). Book tickets.
Written by Emil Dale with music by Stefan Kelk, new musical Kin, inspired by real life events that took place in 80’s America, is described as “Stranger Things meets Blood Brothers meets Hadestown”. Following a concert production in 2022, the show recently ran at The Factory Playhouse Theatre Hitchin. Watch this space for more!
The Book Thief
New musical The Book Thief is to run in Coventry and Leicester this autumn. The stage adaptation of the best selling novel will run at Coventry’s Belgrade Theatre from 11 – 16 September before heading to Leicester’s Curve Theatre from 29 September – 14 October. Presented by DEM Productions the show has a libretto by Jodi Picoult and Timothy Allen McDonald and music and lyrics by Elyssa Samsel and Kate Anderson. It made its world premiere in 2022 at the Octagon Theatre, Bolton.
Faking Bad – The Unauthorised Parody Methsical
Faking Bad – The Unauthorised Parody Methsical will stage a development run at London’s The Turbine Theatre this summer from 17 August. Written by Rob Gathercole and directed by Andrew Beckett, the show arrives ten years after the award winning TV show, Breaking Bad, hit our screens. Book tickets.
Scouts! The Musical recently made its premiere at London’s The Other Palace. Gigglemug Theatre have partnered with The Scouts on the new musical which has a book & lyrics by Sam Cochrane and music & lyrics by David Fallon