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12 brand new musicals to see in 2021

There are some exciting shows on the horizon!

Marc Teitler and Nancy Harris in a workshop for The Magician's Elephant
© RSC, photograph by Sam Allard

Theatres may be closed right now but with signs that things are on their way to opening up, we wanted to give you some exciting tidbits on the horizon!


Get Up, Stand Up!

Bob Marley (left) and Arinzé Kene (right)
© Left: Fifty-Six Hope Road Music, Adrian Boot. Right: Dan Wooller for WhatsOnStage

Bob Marley is an iconic musical figure, so it'll be extra special to see his story come to life on stage, with stalwart performer Arinze Kene of Misty fame in the lead role. We're already excited and it doesn't even open until next year! Lyric Theatre, from 6 February 2021


Moulin Rouge!

The Broadway production of Moulin Rouge!
© Matthew Murphy

It's an epic Broadway bonanza and already audiences in the UK are eager to get a slice of the bohemian knees-up. The soundtrack is enough to keep us sated for now, but it won't be long before we're clamouring for sequined excess and larger-than-life numbers. The show will head into the Piccadilly Theatre post-Pretty Woman. Piccadilly Theatre, from March 2021


Cinderella

Carrie Hope Fletcher
© AKA

A new Andrew Lloyd Webber is always a momentous occasion, and with the performance calibre of Carrie Hope Fletcher leading the cast, this new take on the classic Cinderella story might well the perfect post-corona tonic. Emerald Fennell (Killing Eve) supplies the book. Gillian Lynne Theatre, from 19 March 2021


Frozen

Stephanie McKeon and Samantha Barks
© Disney, photo by Julia Kennedy

The coolest musical of the lot! Frozen recently announced its lead casting – the wonderful Stephanie McKeon and Samantha Barks playing the two sisters Anna and Elsa. A gargantuan film franchise, we expect similar results when the live version finally lands in the West End. The show is currently scheduled to run at Theatre Royal Drury Lane from 2 April 2021


The Drifters Girl

Beverley Knight
© Dan Wooller for WhatsOnStage

If you don't think you know the music of The Drifters, then we can guarantee that you know the music of The Drifters, with hits including "Under the Boardwalk" and "Save the Last Dance for Me". West End legend Beverley Knight stars in this brand new show, with book by Ed Curtis and direction by Jonathan Church. The show is currently scheduled to run from this autumn in both Newcastle and the West End and, even if dates are to change, then we expect it to be running in 2021


101 Dalmations

101 Dalmations
© Feast Creative and Oliver Rosser

How will they bring all 101 dogs to the stage? We don't know, but we recommend planning ahead and booking now just to find out. Casting for the show, which is adapted by Zinnie Harris with music and lyrics by Douglas Hodge, is to be announced. From 15 May 2021


Identical

Identical

Audiences will be seeing double when this brand new musical, based on the The Parent Trap novel (responsible for those pretty brill films), opens in Nottingham before transferring to Bath with direction from the fabled Trevor Nunn. Featuring identical twins (hence the title) the piece sees two sisters use a classic switcheroo to try and bring their family back together. 2021 dates tbc


Monsoon Wedding

Monsoon Wedding

The award-winning film is being adapted into a musical with the rather brilliant Mira Nair and Stephen Whitson co-directing (Nair also directed the original), alongside book by Sabrina Dhawan and Arpita Mukherjee, lyrics by Masi Asare and Susan Birkenhead and music by Vishal Bhardwaj. A fantastic creative team will take the Delhi story to Leeds initially, before the show transfers to the Roundhouse in Camden. Leeds Playhouse dates tbc, London from 16 July to 29 August 2021


Bring It On!

Bring It On

Despite an attempt a few years back, it is remarkable that the smash-hit musical featuring the talents of Lin-Manuel Miranda has never been seen professionally on UK shores (BTAS did a remarkable production last year). So this new touring show, which kicks off next year, is an exciting prospect. Touring from Autumn 2021


My Best Friend's Wedding

Alexandra Burke
© Dan Wooller for WhatsOnStage

Alexandra Burke heads up a brand new musical based on the film about a couple of late-20-somethings that promise to marry each other if they don't find anyone else. It features a shedload of Burt Bacharach and Hal David songs so will probably be a cockle-warming experience with lots of romance to boot. Tour opens at Manchester Palace Theatre on 20 September 2021


The Magician's Elephant

Marc Teitler and Nancy Harris in a workshop for The Magician's Elephant
© RSC, photograph by Sam Allard

The RSC's big new musical has revealed 2021 dates after being postponed. Kate DiCamillo best-selling book, about a magical flying mammal, looks set to be the sort of wondrous fun that will captivate audiences this festive season. Thursday 14 October 2021 to Saturday 1 January 2022


What's New Pussycat?

The artwork for What's New Pussycat?

We're rather surprised that there hasn't been a Tom Jones musical before, but with a crack team led by wonderful director Luke Sheppard (of & Juliet fame), we've got high hopes for this new show. Leeds Playhouse, 2021 dates to be confirmed.




Upcoming but unconfirmed dates

There are a number of productions that we know are in the pipeline (having had their original dates moved due to the pandemic) with new performances to be confirmed. Namely, Something Rotten!'s UK premiere, Our Man in Havana, The Rhythmics and Sammy.

Check out our full list of rescheduled theatre you can watch in 2021 and 2022

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