Welcome to 2017, a brand new year tipped to be one of the best ever in London's theatreland. Christmas was a wonderful thing to behold, with thousands of happy revellers flocking to the capital for a seasonal treat. The West End was full of drama and comedy, heartbreak, laughter and music, and we experienced enormous ticket sales for the full range of show types. Now we're taking 2017 by storm. Here are the top 12 shows our customers loved best last month.
Straight in at number one? It's this exceptional play by James Graham, This House, which premièred in 2012, a genuinely moving and frequently very funny insight into the guts of British politics. Roll back time to 1974 and some dangerous questions were being asked. Is a political revolution in the wind, will the Labour party survive and what happens to Britain as a whole? This House delves into the secret world of the Whips, the MPs, the chaos, the fights... and the results are both hilarious and shocking. Totally brilliant.
This House Tickets
Straight in at number two, Rodgers & Hammerstein’s iconic musical is playing at the the London Coliseum. Better still, it stars Katherine Jenkins and Alfie Boe. The story? When the charming Carousel Barker Billy falls head over heels with Julie Jordan, tragedy is on the cards. Fifteen years ago Billy was involved in an armed robbery. Will he be able to redeem himself and his family's reputation? Come along and see.
Number one in our chart last time around, this time Motown slips a little to number three. This wonderful feel-good show keeps popping in and out of our chart and proved a firm favourite throughout 2016. The signs are looking good for 2017 too, as the compelling true story of Berry Gordy's epic soul record label delights enormous audiences night after night. If soul music dings your bell, this one's for you.
Last time this wonderfully noisy, fun and hugely enjoyable romp of a musical hit number six in our top 12 chart. Now it's at number four thanks to a smash hit of a December where it drew crowds, made loads of friends and influenced thousands of people. If you adore Meatloaf and his music and you'd love to experience songs from all three of his infamous Bat Out of Hell albums live and dangerous, grab tickets now.
Bat Out of Hell Tickets
Michael Jackson is long gone. But he's far, far from forgotten. The great man's music lives on, a dazzling combination of soul, funk and disco that people of every age and persuasion just can't help dancing to. You'll have a job staying in your seat during this awesome jukebox musical that hammers out masses of massive Jackson hits, one after another, in a homage to a talent so large and bright we're unlikely to see anything like it again.
Thriller - Live Tickets
Last time this gorgeous romantic musical was at number 10 in our chart. Now it's back at number six, no surprise when the hard-hitting story of superstar Rachel and her rocky relationship with her bodyguard is so thrilling, so touching, so unique. But it's the music itself that makes this such a show-stopper: oodles of wonderful soul music performed by perfection by ridiculously talented people. Boy, what a musical. It's simply brilliant.
The Bodyguard Tickets
There's a brand new contender in our chart, and it's a worthy entrant. Welcome to Sam Shepard’s Pulitzer Prize and Obie-winning play, Buried Child, which made a massive impact in New York. Now it's over here, starring Ed Harris and Jeremy Irvine. They're joined by the supremely talented Amy Madigan from Twice in a Lifetime fame, once again playing Halie. And Jeremy Irvine, respected for his recent roles in War Horse and The Railway Man, plays Vince.
Buried Child Tickets
No surprises here... panto always goes down a storm at Christmas and Aladdin is no exception. Thousands of children of every age, from four to a hundred and four, loved the show, drank in the sheer spectacle of the costumes and the stage sets, and were completely carried away by the magic. If you haven't seen it yet, there's still plenty of time to catch this spectacularly fun show live. You know you want to!
At number four last time, it's great to see Kinky Boots still in our chart, in a very respectable ninth place. Perhaps it's because it's a true story. Maybe it's the music. Maybe it's the boots themselves. Whatever it is, it's a winner - this fabulous story never fails to delight and amuse. What happens when an ailing British shoe factory discovers a brand new and revolutionary customer base? They save the company, that's what. You'll adore it!
Kinky Boots Tickets
Number nine last time and still in our chart, thanks to the hugely talented pen of the people who gave us 'The Play That Goes Wrong'. This nutty show delivers a feast of giggles. This is one of the craziest, silliest bank robbery stories on the planet, a farce to end all farces, and it has audiences in pieces. If you want to let a little laughter into a grey and gloomy January, it's absolutely perfect.
The Comedy About A Bank Robbery Tickets
Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons span a generous handful of soul-inspired chart hits through the late 1960s and 1970s. Their music inspired a generation. Now the band's personal stories are up for grabs, beautifully told in a jukebox-style musical that just keeps on giving. It's been in and out of our top 12 best-selling theatre show chart for a couple of years and shows no signs of slowing down. If you love their music, buy tickets now.
Jersey Boys Tickets
What happens when a couple of hilariously naïve Christians head for a remote African village on a mission to convert the locals? Chaos, that's what. This splendid comedy comes from the pens of the same blokes who gave us the legendary TV cartoon South Park, and it has slipped just one place this month. At number eleven last December and one of our hottest long-term sellers, it's the ultimate in irreverent silliness.
The Book of Mormon Tickets
What West End show do you most want to experience in January 2017? A trip to the theatre is the best possible way to cheer yourself up now all the excitement of the festive season is over, filling the gap between now and spring with pleasure, happiness, fun and excitement. London's stunning theatres await you, all stuffed full of excellent entertainment. We'll see you soon!