2012 is certainly going to be an exciting year for theatre lovers. With the incredible variety of exciting new plays and productions available in London each year, it’s great to be able to pick out a few highlights for the coming 12 months.
As with last year, I’ve selected these for their starry casts, as well as the promise of fabulous productions. Autograph books at the readyâ€¦
1. The Madness of George III, Apollo Theatre, from 18 Jan
I can’t wait to see Olivier Award-winning actor David Haig in Alan Bennett’s brilliant play. He’s already had rave reviews for performances in Bath, and I loved seeing him in Yes, Prime Minister last year, so this is one of next January’s hottest tickets for me.
2. Hay Fever, Noël Coward Theatre, from 10 Feb
I’m a big fan of Lindsay Duncan, Jeremy Northam and Olivia Colman, so I can’t wait to see them all together in Noël Coward’s Hay Fever at the Noël Coward Theatre in February.
3. All New People, Duke of Yorks Theatre, from 22 Feb
Another year, another American star wants to come and perform in our inimitable West End. This time Scrubs’ Zach Braff is bringing his new play, All New People, to London. And he’s starring in it too. While he’s not to everyone’s taste, I like Scrubs and Braff’s film, Garden State, so am interested in seeing this show when it comes to London.
4. Wild Swans, Young Vic, from 13 Apr
Any Harry Potter fans out there should check out Wild Swans at the Young Vic this spring: it stars Harry Potter actor Katie Leung as the character based on Jung Chang in a new stage version of the famous story.
5. Mark Rylance at the Globe, from 7 Jun
Mark Rylance is one of my all-time favourite actors. And knowing that he’s returning to my favourite theatre in London, Shakespeare’s Globe, is just so exciting. Plus he’s playing the lead in Richard III and Olivia in an all-male Twelfth Night – two of the bard’s greatest plays. Booking opens on 13 February: don’t miss out!
6. King Lear, Almeida Theatre, from 31 Aug
Another exciting addition to the World Shakespeare Festival is Jonathan Pryce playing King Lear at the Almeida next summer. I loved Pryce as the villain in Tomorrow Never Dies, and when I saw him on stage in My Fair Lady. I can’t help thinking he’ll be an amazing Lear.
What plays are you looking forward to seeing in 2012? Let us know in the comments below.