Tips and Tricks: West End LIVE

Apologies for the delay- been a busy few days at work to say the least!

So West End LIVE is coming up soon! Very excited, even though it’s unlikely that I’ll be able to go. BUT A GIRL CAN LIVE IN HOPE!

wel

It’s proving to be a very good lineup. Aside from Matilda, an American Idiot preview and the other shows I mentioned in my previous blog (LINK), they also have plays such as War
Horse and all kinds of other shows putting in an appearance! The official schedule has just been released (LINK), so check it out for yourself.

And as promised, here are my tips for doing West End LIVE!

 

Timing:
Here’s all the information you need on timing, from the official website.

SATURDAY:

Doors open: 10.30am
Performances start: 11am
Performances end: 6pm

SUNDAY:
Doors open: 10.30 am
Performances start: 12 noon
Performances end: 6pm

The doors open 15 minutes early, but if you want a good view, get there early! Bear in mind that about 500,000 people will be going across the whole weekend, so that’s a lot of people vying for a good spot!

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I would advise turning up a good 30 minute before doors open. That’ll also give you some time to scout the area, so you can see where the nearest toilets and places to eat/drink are, and check out the exhibits too! I believe there is one where you can hold an Olivier award! So make sure you have a good look round, not just at the acts but exhibits too.

Another quick word on timing: don’t take a toilet break before your show is due to perform. Because there will be hundreds of others doing the exact same thing! And you don’t want to be stuck in a queue for the loo, as you don’t hear ‘Do You Hear the People Sing’!

 

Endurance

It’s going to be a long day. If you stay for the whole thing, that is going to be 6 or 7 hours of standing up.

Fortunately for me, I’m used to this, doing 8 hour shifts on my feet at work! Sometimes I think I’ve been doing it for so long that my feet have become numb from pain. But no, they still hurt.

But for most people, it’s going to be hard! Plus, being an enclosed venue it won’t have that much space to walk around in. And it is much easier to walk for 8 hours than stand still for that
long.

So what do I recommend?

1) Dress for comfort: Wear. Comfy. Shoes. Trainers, maybe not sandals, unless you like getting your feet trodden on! And by all means, wear that wicked Wicked t-shirt! But also bring a
cardigan and jacket!

2) Take breaks: if there isn’t a designated seating area, do try and nip off for a quick sit down break in a cafe. If you do decide to sit down/squat inside, don’t be surprised if a steward rushes
over. It will be hot and it’ll probably look like you’ve fainted!

3) And most importantly: DRINK WATER. Even if it’s not going to be hot, body heat from crowd + standing for hours = exhaustion and dehydration. Don’t be an idiot. Bring a drink! And
sunglasses, sunhat and suntan lotion! Basically, bring a backpack and be prepared for ALL weather.

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Transport

The nearest overground/underground stations for West End LIVE are: Charing Cross, Embankment, and Leicester Square.

On the way up, you should be fine transport wise. But the way back is where things get interesting…

We all know how bad the tubes can seem when you leave a West End show. You’re leaving, Curious Incident audience are leaving, Les Mis audience are leaving. Basically all the theatres in London are chucking everyone out at the same time. But this will be tame compared to 500,000 leaving. So be prepared to queue not only to get onsite, but to leave as well.

Plus another word to the wise. There is an Austerity Protest on Saturday 20th June. Now this may impact the event, or it may not. Westminster police should be on hand for West End LIVE, and I’m sure they have a plan in place for if/when the march passes Trafalgar Square.

But this may also make the trains up/down a bit busier than usual, so just a heads up about that!

And of course, the most important tip…

HAVE FUN!

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