Visit London Blog » royal opera house http://blog.visitlondon.com Enjoy the very best of London Mon, 21 Jul 2014 13:05:29 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.9.1 Best of London Theatre: 2014 Olivier Awards Nominees Announced http://blog.visitlondon.com/2014/03/best-of-london-theatre-2014-olivier-awards-nominees-announced/ http://blog.visitlondon.com/2014/03/best-of-london-theatre-2014-olivier-awards-nominees-announced/#comments Mon, 10 Mar 2014 15:24:20 +0000 http://blog.visitlondon.com/?p=38072 Olivier Awards

The best of London’s theatre has been whittled down ahead of the Olivier Awards ceremony next month, with new musicals leading the way in the nominations revealed today.

New musical Charlie and the Chocolate Factory has gained seven nominations, while fellow newcomers The Book of Mormon and The Scottsboro Boys have six apiece.

Douglas Hodge as Willy Wonka with Jack Costello as Charlie and cast members. Photo by Helen MaybanksIt’s not just new shows that are hogging the limelight however, with the revival of Stephen Sondheim’s Merrily We Roll Along also doing well with the voters, with seven nominations to its name. Nominees for the coveted BBC Radio 2 Audience Award include West End hits Les Misérables, Matilda the Musical, The Phantom of the Opera and Wicked.

Among the notable names up for individual gongs are Jude Law for his role as Henry V and Judi Dench as Alice in Peter and Alice, both at the Noel Coward Theatre. Renowned baritone Plácido Domingo also gains a nomination for his portrayal of the title character in Verdi’s Nabucco at the Royal Opera House.

The awards, which are run by the Society of London Theatre, recognise the best productions and performances of theatre shows, opera and dance over the previous year. This year’s glitzy awards gala will take place on 13 April at the Royal Opera House.

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visitlondon.com Guest Editors: Marianela Nunez and Thiago Soares http://blog.visitlondon.com/2014/02/visitlondon-com-guest-editors-marianela-nunez-and-thiago-soares/ http://blog.visitlondon.com/2014/02/visitlondon-com-guest-editors-marianela-nunez-and-thiago-soares/#comments Tue, 04 Feb 2014 17:07:41 +0000 http://blog.visitlondon.com/?p=37374

Royal Ballet dancers, and husband and wife team, Thiago Soares and Marianela Nuñez tell their London Story in the video above.

During our interview the two dancers, who are both South American but met at London’s Royal Ballet told us about their life and work in London. We’ve used some of their favourite London experiences to populate our homepage www.visitlondon.com from 4 to 6 February.

Here’s Marianela and Thiago’s London top five:

Covent Garden and the Royal Ballet

T: We have a really strong connection with Covent Garden. Because really, that’s where the dreams came true, isn’t it – both onstage and offstage.

M: Covent Garden definitely is a very special place for us.

T: We’ve spent so many nights here, visiting restaurants and doing things for the Royal Ballet Company, and of course, so many nights on stage at the Royal Opera House, here, so whenever we are walking around the piazza, it feels like home to us.

London Restaurants

T [It's hard for me to surprise Marianela because] she’s not that keen on surprises and we work so hard that she knows exactly what she wants to do when she’s not dancing, whether that is go to a restaurant or go to her favourite shops. We very much like Roka, the Japanese restaurant on Charlotte Street.

Islington

M: We bought our first flat in Highbury & Islington and we’ve been living there for two years now. We fell in love with the area straight away. It feels very ‘homey’ and we are only 10 minutes from Upper Street which I love – it’s full of great restaurants, beautiful little boutiques and we are so happy there. We are only 20 minutes door-to-door from the Royal Opera House, so it’s very handy too.

T: A great nightlife as well, some great pubs and small clubs too.

M: Close to our flat we have Highbury Fields as well and I love it there. I also like to go to Columbia Market on Sunday mornings, I love it and could spend hours there.

London in 24 hours: Start at Portobello Market 

T: I would take them to maybe Portobello Market in the morning, walk around, get some cool stuff and look at the funky shops.

M: I would take them to see all the big sights like Big Ben, St Paul’s Cathedral. The Underground means you can get round the city in just one day. I would take them to my favourite shop, Liberty’s. So, see all the main spots and then finish your day by coming to the Royal Opera House to see us dance.

The National Gallery

M: We are very lucky to have the National Gallery right here near the Royal Opera House. I remember when we started going out together, he would call me and say, ‘Hi, I’m on a lunch break and I’m at the National Gallery.’ It’s amazing for us from where we come from as we don’t have that free entrance. We go there and get inspiration from all that incredible artwork.

T: There is so much going on in London, a lot of culture and a lot of art, and the real tradition that there is in this city in theatre, which is our field, is really amazing. You can just walk from here and see a number of high-class performances at so many places. I really believe that art makes all of us better people.

Discover more stories and enter a competition to win a fantastic stay in London at www.visitlondon.com/story #TheLondonStory

What would you recommend to visitors to London?

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What’s On This Weekend: 14-15 December http://blog.visitlondon.com/2013/12/whats-on-this-weekend-14-15-december/ http://blog.visitlondon.com/2013/12/whats-on-this-weekend-14-15-december/#comments Mon, 09 Dec 2013 10:00:43 +0000 http://blog.visitlondon.com/?p=36595

We are counting down the days now and the Christmas events are stacking up in the capital. Take in some traditional treats such as Christmas Carols in Trafalgar Square and The Nutcracker at The Royal Opera House, or head down to the O2 for a handmade Christmas.

Christmas Carols in Trafalgar Square

The capital doesn’t get much more festive than this, as the famous Norwegian Christmas tree is lit on 5 Dec and Trafalgar Square is filled with carollers every night until 22 Dec. Carol groups will be singing all the classics, from Deck the Halls and Good King Wenceslas, to Ding Dong Merrily on High and The Holly and the Ivy, and it’s all for charity. 5-22 Dec

Handmade Christmas at the O2

Get hands-on this Christmas at Handmade Christmas at the O2. This indoor Christmas fair provides the perfect opportunity to pick up some unique Christmas gifts from hundreds of UK designers, crafters, and food and drink producers, as well as creative workshops and demos. 13-15 Dec

The Wind in the Willows

Will Tuckett and the Royal Opera House bring the beloved childhood story of The Wind in the Willows to the Duchess Theatre this week. Expect innovative stage design, choreography and songs in this adaptation of the fantastical novel, as it follows the adventures of shy Mole, debonair Ratty, wise Badger and hot-headed Toad. 11 Dec-1 Feb

The Nutcracker

See The Royal Ballet perform one of the world’s most famous ballets. The Nutcracker opened at The Royal Opera House this week, a perfect family treat for the festive season. Relive the classic story of Clara, who creeps down to the Christmas tree on Christmas Eve in search of her favourite present, only to embark on a magical adventure against the evil Rat King, all accompanied by the spellbinding music of Tchaikovsky. 4 Dec-16 Jan

The Jameel Prize

This exhibition displays the work of the 10 talented designers and artists that have been shortlisted for the third Jameel Prize at the Victoria and Albert Museum. The Jameel Prize looks to reward works that are directly inspired by the Islamic tradition and the top prize is £25,000. Artworks range from Arab typography and calligraphy to fashion inspired by Istanbul’s Hagia Sofia. 11 Dec-21 April

Louis Pearl, the Amazing Bubble Man

And now for something completely different… Louis Pearl is bringing his much loved Bubble Man show to the London Palladium. A perennial favourite at the Edinburgh Fringe, Pearl literally pushes the boundaries of bubbles in a 75-minute show that has to be seen to be believed. 12 Dec-4 Jan

More London events

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What’s On This Weekend: 7-8 December 2013 http://blog.visitlondon.com/2013/12/whats-on-this-weekend-7-8-december-2013/ http://blog.visitlondon.com/2013/12/whats-on-this-weekend-7-8-december-2013/#comments Mon, 02 Dec 2013 10:00:41 +0000 http://blog.visitlondon.com/?p=36443

It’s starting to get very festive in the capital this weekend, and whether you want to see running huskies on a sleigh ride at the London Wetland Centre, or running Christmas puddings in Covent Garden, we have you covered!

Meet Santa and his Huskies

Children can get hands-on at WWT London Wetland Centre’s winter weekend by jumping on a husky sleigh ride before visiting Santa in his magical grotto, set deep within a pine forest. This unique Christmas event also allows children to meet the Polar Explorer at his base camp and hear tales of his icy adventures, before making their own explorer’s equipment from recycled materials and learning about the science behind the winter months. 7-8 Dec

The Great Christmas Pudding Race

Cheer on the festively dressed teams at The Great Christmas Pudding Race, all in the name of raising money for Cancer Research. Clad in fancy dress and darting around Covent Garden, this is a unique and chaotic spectacle to break up any Christmas shopping trip. 7 Dec

The Royal Ballet: The Nutcracker

Peter Wright’s production of the classic Christmas tale sees dancers from the Royal Ballet bring The Nutcracker to life against the lavish backdrop of the Royal Opera House. A family-friendly tale of magic and heroics set to the music of Tchaikovsky is sure to bring back that childlike sense of wonder to anyone lacking in Christmas cheer. 4 Dec-16 Jan

Christmas is Cancelled

The English Civil War is blazing into life, the King is captive but plotting, and the Long Parliament is trying to cancel Christmas! Go back in time with this weekend of historical family fun at the National Army Museum and join in with carol singing, festive games and even help decorate the Museum galleries. Suitable for ages 5-11. 7-8 Dec

Coriolanus at Donmar Warehouse

One of the Shakespeare’s most violent and thought-provoking tragedies is returning to the stage at the Donmar Warehouse this week, starring Tom Hiddleston (War Horse, Thor). Coriolanus was adapted for the big screen in 2011 with bona fide stars Ralph Fiennes and Gerard Butler trading blows, and now the bard’s revived classic of power and politics returns to the London stage with a Hollywood star of its own. And, if you can’t get hold of tickets, this will be showing live at selected cinemas nationwide from 30 Jan. From 6 Dec

Statoil Masters Tennis at the Royal Albert Hall

Warm up those neck muscles as some court legends dust off their racquets to see who still has the ability to win a major tournament at Statoil Masters Tennis. Pat Rafter, Greg Rusedski, Mark Philippoussis, John McEnroe, Goran Ivanisevic and his old nemesis Tim Henman will all be lining up in the unique sporting arena of the Royal Albert Hall to compete in the six man round-robin tournaments. 4-8 Dec

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What’s On This Weekend: 30 November-1 December 2013 http://blog.visitlondon.com/2013/11/whats-on-this-weekend-30-november-1-december-2013/ http://blog.visitlondon.com/2013/11/whats-on-this-weekend-30-november-1-december-2013/#comments Mon, 25 Nov 2013 10:00:26 +0000 http://blog.visitlondon.com/?p=36285

There are some great one-off events to get you in the festive spirit this weekend, including the Christmas Dollshouse Festival on Friday and a free Belgravia Christmas Market on Saturday.

Enchanted Woodland at Syon Park

The already picturesque gardens of the Duke of Northumberland’s London home have been transformed into a glittering enchanted woodland (above) this winter. Taking in the Arboretum of Syon, the path around the 18th century lake is lit up to magical effect, giving the surrounding landscape a mythical feel. Culminating at the Great Conservatory, which dates back to 1820, this is a unique way to explore the striking house and gardens of Syon Park. Ends 2 Dec

Belgravia Christmas Market

The exclusive London district of Belgravia is hosting a one off Christmas market on Saturday. Elizabeth Street will be lit up with festive lights and lined with traditional Christmas stalls selling arts and crafts, jewellery and homeware. Santa and his reindeer will also be in attendance and there will be carol singers and a traditional brass band. Be sure to head down to Pimlico Road for family-friendly entertainment including jugglers, trumpeters and stalls selling festive treats, including roast chestnuts and toffee apples. 1 Dec

Christmas Dollshouse Festival at Kensington Town Hall

Another, entirely different, one-off event this weekend is taking place at Kensington Town Hall. Peruse the finest craftsmanship of dolls and dollshouses and keep your eyes peeled for celebrity fans such as Jonathan Ross and Helena Bonham-Carter. Kids can also try their hand at painting miniature Christmas trees from 1pm. 30 Nov

Starring Vivien Leigh: A Centenary Celebration

The latest exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery shows Hollywood icon Vivien Leigh in more than 50 portraits, including rare vintage photographs, magazine covers, vintage film stills and press books. Leigh was best known for her Oscar winning turns in Gone with the Wind and opposite Marlon Brando in A Streetcar Named Desire, as well as her glamorous marriage to Sir Laurence Olivier. 30 Nov-10 Jul

Parsifal at the Royal Opera House

For a dose of high culture this weekend, be sure to see Wagner’s final great work, as Parsifal is being given an inventive new staging at the Royal Opera House. The opera was 25 years in the making and is based upon the classic story of the Holy Grail and deals with themes of prophesy and redemption. 30 Nov-18 Dec

Emil and the Detectives at the National Theatre

The latest family friendly production from the National Theatre follows the success of War Horse and His Dark Materials with the story of young Emil’s adventures in 1920s Berlin. When his money is stolen on the train by a mysterious stranger, Emil thinks he’s lost everything, until he embarks on a journey to catch the thief. 25 Nov-19 Dec

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London Theatre News: Charlie, Wind in the Willows, Stephen Ward and From Here To Eternity http://blog.visitlondon.com/2013/07/london-theatre-news-charlie-wind-in-the-willows-stephen-ward-and-from-here-to-eternity/ http://blog.visitlondon.com/2013/07/london-theatre-news-charlie-wind-in-the-willows-stephen-ward-and-from-here-to-eternity/#comments Thu, 11 Jul 2013 09:00:56 +0000 http://blog.visitlondon.com/?p=34522 Charlie and the Chocolate FactoryFirstly, sad news that A Chorus Line is closing early on 31 August. But with every early curtain comes news of an extension, and fans of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory will be pleased to hear that the Sam Mendes-directed show is now booking at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane until 31 May 2014.

This week, I’ve got news of two hit shows returning to the London stage: firstly, the Royal Opera House’s family-friendly production of The Wind in the Willows will play at the Duchess Theatre this Christmas. This perennial favourite has received three revivals since its first appearance and played more than 100 performances in the capital. Secondly, Lolita Chakrabarti’s Olivier Award-nominated play Red Velvet will return to the Tricycle Theatre as part of its forthcoming new season, with Adrian Lester reprising his role as Ira Aldridge.

Finally three very different new London shows have been announced: a farce, a musical, and a pantomime. Take your pick from Antony Sher playing Sigmund Freud in Terry Johnson’s farce Hysteria at the Hampstead Theatre this September; the world premiere of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s new musical Stephen Ward at the Aldwych Theatre from early December; or the ever-brilliant Hackney Empire panto team’s production of Puss in Boots from November.

Owain Arthur. Photo by Hugo GlendinningLondon Theatre Cast News

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London Video of the Week: Olivier Awards 2013 – Meet the Stars on the Red Carpet http://blog.visitlondon.com/2013/05/london-video-of-the-week-olivier-awards-2013-meet-the-stars-on-the-red-carpet/ http://blog.visitlondon.com/2013/05/london-video-of-the-week-olivier-awards-2013-meet-the-stars-on-the-red-carpet/#comments Fri, 03 May 2013 10:53:26 +0000 http://blog.visitlondon.com/?p=32951

Last weekend, some of the world’s most glamorous theatre stars gathered at the Royal Opera House in Covent Garden for the Olivier Awards. Here, stars including Daniel Radcliffe, Damian Lewis and Kim Cattrall talk about their love of the theatre. If they’ve inspired you to see a show, check out our London theatre guidetop 10 musicals, special offers and fun theatre facts.

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London Theatre News: National Theatre’s Plans for 2013; Private Lives; and Olivier Awards News http://blog.visitlondon.com/2013/01/london-theatre-news-national-theatres-plans-for-2013-private-lives-and-olivier-awards-news/ http://blog.visitlondon.com/2013/01/london-theatre-news-national-theatres-plans-for-2013-private-lives-and-olivier-awards-news/#comments Thu, 31 Jan 2013 11:00:19 +0000 http://blog.visitlondon.com/?p=31489 Yesterday the National Theatre announced their exciting plans for their 50th anniversary year. As well as the premiere of Tori Amos’ musical The Light Princess, there’ll be performances from stars including Simon Russell Beale, Anne-Marie Duff and Clive Rowe, and a season of shows to play in new temporary venue The Shed. Another highlight of their thrilling-sounding season is Nicholas Hytner’s Othello, starring Adrian Lester and Rory Kinnear, and opening in April. Find fuller details here.

In other news, the National Theatre’s West End transfer of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time has extended its run at the Apollo Theatre by 14 weeks, following huge demand for tickets. It now runs from 1 March to 31 August.

After a sell-out run at the Chichester Festival Theatre, Private Lives is coming to the Gielgud Theatre this summer. Starring Toby Stephens and Anna Chancellor as the divorced couple who fall in love again, this classic Noel Coward comedy is directed by Jonathan Kent and runs from 22 June. Anthony Calf and Anna-Louise Plowman reprise their roles as the pair’s newly hitched and soon-to-be-spurned other halves.

Finally, don’t miss all the excitement building around the Olivier Awards. Firstly, theatre fans are being called on to vote for their favourite long-runner. Then there’s the news that Sheridan Smith (one of my favourite actresses) is going to be hosting the event. And not only is the show being broadcast live on BBC Radio 2, there’ll be highlights on ITV following the ceremony AND a live event for theatre fans in Covent Garden on the night. Put 28 April in your diaries now for a lot of theatrical fun.

London Casting News:

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The Olympic Journey Exhibition at the Royal Opera House http://blog.visitlondon.com/2012/08/the-olympic-journey-exhibition-at-the-royal-opera-house/ http://blog.visitlondon.com/2012/08/the-olympic-journey-exhibition-at-the-royal-opera-house/#comments Wed, 01 Aug 2012 07:14:08 +0000 http://blog.visitlondon.com/?p=28218

This week I travelled all the way from Ancient Greece, through 19th-century France to land smack bang in the middle of Olympic London 2012 at the Royal Opera House in Covent Garden.

The ROH’s The Olympic Journey: The Story of the Games exhibition is a nice primer on the history of the games, followed by a just-what-I-wanted-to-see display of Olympic hardware in the form of torches, medals and select athletes’ memorabilia.

Beginning with the first Olympic Games almost 3,000 years ago, the show features sportily decorated Greek amphora dating from around 500BC, which inspires a cool animation of a chariot race. Moving on to Paris in the 1890s, we meet Pierre de Coubertin, whose vision of a civilising universal sporting event drove him, via the village of Much Wenlock in Shropshire, to create the modern Olympic Games. The first games of the modern Olympiad were held in Athens in 1896.

Following the history lesson, you get to see the Olympic Torches that were used for each games from Berlin 1936 onwards, accompanied by footage and diagrams of the most interesting torch routes. I found this bit unexpectedly moving, perhaps because it’s where local heroes and communities get directly involved in what is arguably the most “universal” event that happens in our world to this day.

The final room shows a set of medals from every summer Olympics (confirming my suspicion that the London 2012 medals are huge – the biggest yet!). There’s also a display on the games throughout the years comprising personal memorabilia from 20 representative athletes, who demonstrate the values of the Olympic movement.

The Olympic Journey: The Story of the Games is a great little exhibition. It’s free to enter and only takes about 45 mins to 1 hour to see. Plus there’s the opportunity to get your picture taken with the London 2012 torch – just be sure to grip it a little more firmly than I did (see above).

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London’s Top Free Olympic Exhibitions http://blog.visitlondon.com/2012/07/londons-top-free-olympic-exhibitions/ http://blog.visitlondon.com/2012/07/londons-top-free-olympic-exhibitions/#comments Mon, 09 Jul 2012 09:30:42 +0000 http://blog.visitlondon.com/?p=27455

The Olympic Games aren’t just about victory at the finish line – creativity and design have played a part in making the ultimate sporting event in the world happen. Make sure you celebrate the artists and engineers involved as well as the athletes by visiting one of these top Olympic exhibitions this summer. They’re all free.

Design Stories and After the Party at RIBA
The Royal Institute of British Architects is putting on two Olympic exhibitions to toast the architecture behind the Games. Design Stories: The Architecture Behind 2012 explores the ideas and complex engineering behind the brand new Olympic venues like the Aquatics Centre. It compiles drawings, images, videos and detailed models. The second exhibition, After the Party: The Legacy of Celebration, compares the UK’s Olympic buildings to efforts for previous Olympic Games and celebrations and asks what happens to monuments celebrating events after all the hoopla has passed. 
Design Stories: 25 Jun-21 Sep
After The Party: 25 Jun-5 Oct

Road to 2012 at the National Portrait Gallery
None of the glory on the track and court would be possible without all the work behind the scenes of the Olympic Games. This free series of photographs at the National Portrait Gallery features not only the athletes but people who have put the event together, such as apprentices from the Olympic Park and the team that led the bid for London to hold the Games. It’s the final part of  the BT Road to 2012 project which has commissioned leading photographers to document the build up to the event. Katherine Green’s images of sports communities in London’s East End sit alongside the display. 
19 Jul-23 Sep

The Olympic Journey at the Royal Opera House
For two weeks only, an impressive collection of Olympic artefacts will set up camp at the Royal Opera House for The Olympic Journey: The Story of the Games. The exhibition traces the evolution of the Olympic Games from the ancient Greek games 3,000 years ago. The highlight has to be seeing every single summer Olympic medal since 1896 and every summer Olympic torch since 1936. 
28 Jul-12 Aug

London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games Posters at Tate Britain
The posters for the Olympic Games have always reflected the art – and the mood – of the city that hosts them. Artists like Tracey Emin and Chris Ofili are among the 12 to put their mark on the official posters for London 2012. Screen prints and lithographs of their creations will be among those on show at Tate Britain as part of the London 2012 Festival.
21 Jun-23 Sep

Olympics Through the Ages at Westfield Stratford City
Award-winning photography will showcase iconic sporting moments at this exhibition in the Getty Images Gallery. Taking place within walking distance from the Olympic Park, it looks at the Olympic Games through a camera lens – from the first modern event in Athens in 1896 through to Beijing in 2008. 
27 Jun-30 Sep

What will be the most iconic image from the London 2012 Olympic Games? Comment below and let us know.

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