Thursday Theatre News: Wicked, Dirty Dancing and National Theatre Excitement

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In a week dominated by a trip to see Legally Blonde (yes, I’m still humming the songs), there’s nice news from another pair of London musicals.

Wicked has been voted the best musical of the Noughties by visitors to, with Spring Awakening and Avenue Q coming in second and third. It’s nice for the Wicked team, but to be honest, I’m not convinced by any poll that has Billy Elliot at No.7 (surely top 3?), and is missing Mamma Mia, Phantom of the Opera and Les Mis.

Next up is Dirty Dancing, which is having a Valentine’s Day Charity Gala on 13 February in aid of Magic 105.4’s Cash for Kids charity. If you’re a fan, make sure you’re there for this special show.

Also this week, the Tricycle Theatre’s announced the third play in their Irish Season. Pat McCabe’s The Dead School joins Greta Garbo Came To Donegal and Chronicles of Long Kesh at the theatre this spring. The Dead School arrives at the Tricycle after a Ireland and a sell-out run at the Ulster Bank Dublin Theatre Festival in 2009, where it was nominated for three Irish Times Theatre Awards including Best Production. If you saw it, tell us about it!

But all the big news today has been about the National Theatre’s new season. And it’s got me breathless with excitement.

There’s Oscar-winner Danny Boyle directing a new take on Frankenstein, and (my personal favourite) Rupert Goold directing a new play by Mike Bartlett about global warming called Earthquakes In London. Shakespeare fans can see a £10 Hamlet with Clare Higgins and Rory Kinnear, directed by Nicholas Hytner, as well as Twelfth Night directed by Peter Hall for his 80th birthday, starring his daughter, film and stage actress Rebecca Hall, as Viola. Wow.

There’s more: I’m personally chuffed to see two shows transferring from my hometown theatres in Northampton: Eugene O’Neill’s Beyond The Horizon and Tennessee Williams’s Spring Storm from the Royal & Derngate Theatres start the new season in April.

Read the whole story of the National Theatre’s 2010 plans on the Official London Theatre website, and put the booking dates in your diaries today! It’s going to be great.