This season's top five musicals

Michael Manton / 05 October 2012

With the nights drawing in, now’s the perfect time to get to London's West End for a musical evening or matinee at the theatre. Here, we pick our favourite shows for this autumn and winter, featuring some old favourites and new hits.


'Brilliant. Cabaret increasingly looks one of the defining musicals of the postwar era.' The Guardian

The hottest new show in town, Cabaret turns Weimar Berlin of 1931 into a sassy, sizzling haven of decadence. At its dark heart are the notorious Emcee (Will Young) and sassy Sally Bowles (Michelle Ryan), who perform nightly at the infamous Kit Kat Klub.

Since its Broadway premiere in 1966 and the famous movie version with Liza Minnelli and Oscar winner Joel Grey, Cabaret has won a staggering number of stage and screen awards including 8 Oscars, 7 BAFTAs and 13 Tonys.

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Les Misérables

'For sheer musical theatre spectacle and an emotional roller coaster, it quite rightly remains the best show in town' The Stage

Les Misérables is now the longest running musical in the world and its epic tale of passion and destruction, set against the backdrop of a nation in the grip of revolution, continues to sweep audiences away, night after night.

With the long-awaited film out this December, starring Hugh Jackman, Russell Crowe and Anne Hathaway, which is already an Oscar front-runner, this musical interpretation of Victor Hugo's masterpiece is bound to be more popular than ever.

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'Hilarious, moving and magical – a glorious production' The Telegraph

This year's breakthrough smash, the RSC's adaptation of Roald Dahl's Matilda won seven 2012 Olivier Awards, including Best New Musical, the most such awards won by a single show.

Adults and children alike will be thrilled and delighted by an inspiring story that revels in the anarchy of childhood, the power of imagination and the inspiring story of a girl who dares to change her destiny.

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Billy Elliot

'Billy's a whizz! He'll lift your spirits, make you cry and send you home high with hope' Daily Mail

Billy has been stamping, swearing and pirouetting his way across London’s West End since 2005, and has gone on to captivate audiences around the world.

Set in a northern mining town, against the background of the 1984/’85 miners’ strike, Billy Elliot is the inspirational story of a young boy’s struggle against the odds to make his dream come true. With unforgettable music by Elton John, sensational dance and a powerful storyline, this is musical theatre at its finest.

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Jersey Boys

'Oh what a night of magical memories....This is an utterly wonderful show full of vitality, pace and power' Daily Express

Jersey Boys follows the rags-to-riches tale of Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons as they work their way from the streets of Newark to the heights of stardom,

Now firmly established as one of the West End's longest running and most popular shows, and features such hits as 'Sherry,' 'Big Girls Don't Cry,' 'Can't Take My Eyes Off of You,' 'Oh, What a Night' and many more.

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