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London theatre enjoyment

My husband and I love theatre and always try to see either a show or play when we travel to London. This trip we were lucky to see Ian McKellen’s one man show at the Harold Pinter Theatre and Agatha Christie’s Witness for the Prosecution at the County Hall. Both were amazing performances.

Ian’s show focuses on his life and experiences in theatre and showcases many of his roles in film and on stage. The second half is all about Shakespeare. Brilliantly organized and discussed. Loved it. He has such a gift for engaging the audience and getting them to be part of the discussion.

Witness for the Prosecution is in the County Hall - once used by the London city government for their sessions. It looks like a court room and you sit very close to the stage area. The cast is top notch. We recognized several of the actors from film and TV. Amazing experience and well worth the time.

Posted by
681 posts

I love going to the theater in London. Sounds like 2 great shows.

Posted by
5151 posts

One of the highlights of our life was seeing "A Mid-Summer Night's Dream" at the Globe a few years ago.

Posted by
8995 posts

Loved Witness for the Prosecution!!!
Very unique setting for a play. Wished I had purchased tickets for the jury box though;)

Posted by
749 posts

Thank you for sharing McKellen’s one man show. It’s great to hear from London theatre fans on this forum.
Theatre and music are always on my London schedule, too!

McKellen said his Lear in 2018 at Duke of York’s was going to be his last major Shakespearean role. His mastery of that last scene made us all hope it wasn’t so. One of the great theatre experiences in my life.

Posted by
13213 posts

I wanted to get tickets for Witness for the Prosecution for our visit in March, but when I looked (months ago) it was not running in March. So I booked two other plays. Now I see they have extended the run through summer, so I can get tickets for our July visit.

Posted by
211 posts

My advice for Witness is don't get seats in the very front row. You will be right next to the stage; you'll be way too close and will be looking up at the actors.* Aisle seats a few rows back are perfect; there is a lot of running up and down the aisles. Jury box would be fun, too. Enjoy!

*Some people who had seats in the front row moved to our (3rd?) row at intermission.

Edit: yes, the balcony seats have limited viewing. That's why they are so much cheaper :-)

Posted by
8995 posts

My seats were in the second row, and had no problems seeing the stage or any other part of the staging. As and added bonus one of the defense attorneys was seated right next to me.

If you have mobility issues you definitely don’t want to be in the upper “balcony” as the stairs are very steep!

Posted by
13213 posts

What about the seats in a single row on the same relative position as the jury box, but on the other side?

Posted by
211 posts

Lola, that should be fine (although I saw it two summers ago – 2018 – so I hope people who've seen it more recently chime in, as my memory is fading!). Just not the very first row by the stage (row A). We had seats in Row D or E, near the center aisle (Door 3), which were perfect, I thought.

Posted by
432 posts

We were by Door 2, row F, and they were great, too - very comfortable seating. The website has pretty good pictures, so you can get an idea of what the view might be.

Posted by
13213 posts

Thanks! After looking at photos, I chose the seats by the center aisle in row F. Looks like the aisle seat is offset in a way that allows greater visibility.

Those seats on the other side of the jury box look like one would be looking right at the audience, not the judge. Too much like my old days in court, when I sat just below the judge, facing into the courtroom.