Amongst the major openings in London this week are:

OPENING TONIGHT, Monday 15 January 2007 (previews from 11 January), the Royal Shakespeare Company continues its now-annual winter West End residency at the Novello Theatre with Antony and Cleopatra, starring Patrick Stewart and Harriet Walter in the title roles (See News, 25 Aug 2006). Last April, Gregory Doran’s production launched the RSC’s year-long Complete Works Festival in Stratford-upon-Avon, where it continued in rep until October 2006. At the Novello, it runs until 17 February 2007 and is followed by The Tempest, starring Stewart as Prospero.


OPENING TUESDAY, 16 January 2007 (previews from 9 January), Icons in London opens at Leicester Square’s The Venue for a limited season to 24 February 2007 (See News, 28 Dec 2006). The show marks the West End debut of Las Vegas impersonator Greg London who - backed by a support band, singers and dancers - performs musical impressions of personalities including Arnold Schwarzenegger, Rod Stewart, Austin Powers, Ozzy Osbourne, Robbie Williams, Sammy Davies Jr, Johnny Cash, David Bowie, Louis Armstrong and the Muppets’ Kermit the Frog.

ALSO ON TUESDAY, Geoff Sobelle and Trey Lyford bring their Edinburgh Fringe physical theatre hit All Wear Bowlers to the Barbican’s Pit as part of the 29th annual London International Mime Festival (See News, 27 Dec 2006). It continues until 28 January 2007.


OPENING WEDNESDAY, 17 January 2007 (previews from 5 January), Propeller – Edward Hall’s multi award-winning all-male Shakespearean ensemble - presents two productions, The Taming of the Shrew and Twelfth Night, in rep at the Old Vic until 17 February 2007 (See News, 9 May 2006).


OPENING THURSDAY, 18 January 2007 (previews from 11 January), Eileen Atkins and Imelda Staunton star in the world premiere of Frank McGuinness’ There Came a Gypsy Riding at the Almeida Theatre for a run to 3 March 2007 (See News, 29 Sep 2006). The play, directed by Almeida artistic director Michael Attenborough, centres on the McKenna family, who convene at their remote west of Ireland holiday home to mark the 21st birthday of their late son Gene. Eccentric cousin Bridget appears, invites herself in for cake, and makes ready to expose a family secret. The cast also features Ian McElhinney, Elaine Cassidy and Aidan McArdle.

** Our Whatsonstage.com Outing to There Came a Gypsy Riding on 6 February, including a FREE drink & post-show cast reception, is now SOLD OUT - click here to join the waiting list! **

ALSO ON THURSDAY (previews from 17 January), Kneehigh Theatre brings its version of Cymbeline, Shakespeare’s tale of romance, jealousy and revenge, to west London’s Lyric Hammersmith (See News, 11 Dec 2006). Freely adapted and directed by Kneehigh artistic director Emma Rice, it runs from until 3 February 2007 as part of a UK-wide tour.

- by Caroline Ansdell