MONSTAS SHORTLIST: Best Theatre Venue of the year: 2018

It’s almost Christmas and what would the festive season be without some recognition of the best of 2018? Over the next month we’ll shortlist five nominees in each of 14 categories for our Oscars, or monstas if you will, of 2018.

  • Read on for nominees for the monsta for Best Theatre Venue of the year

This is a new category and, realising the impossibility of comparing like with like, we’re looking for the venue which punches farthest above its weight. Here’s our recent thoughts on the best membership schemes available but a great theatre is so much more than that. It needs to be somewhere you want to spend as much time as possible – whatever’s on.

  1. Bridge Theatre Tickets

Screen Shot 2018-12-03 at 18.00.39

Opened in October 2017, it’s a classy venue complete with madeleines and we’ve loved shows including Julius Caesar, Nightfall, My Name Is Lucy Barton and Allelujah! here. The immersive Shakespeare production was especially groundbreaking and we’re very much looking forward to a similar treatment of A Midsummer Night’s Dream at this venue in 2019.

2. Bush Theatre Tickets

Screen Shot 2018-12-04 at 17.37.59

Staff at the Bridge could definitely learn a thing or two about friendliness from their counterparts at this venue. Not only has it been an absolute delight to write here but Misty (see above) played here before a triumphant West End run and we’ve also loved other new writing here including The B*easts, An Adventure and All We Ever Wanted Was Everything. We can’t wait to see Drip here tomorrow.

3. Hampstead Theatre Tickets

Again it’s not the most welcoming of venues but Jade Anouka thrilled us in The Phlebotomist in the studio theatre here, we caught Caroline, Or Change before its West End transfer and Maisie Williams was impressive in her stage debut for I And You.

4. The Other Palace Tickets 

Much of monstagigz is written in theatre cafes and bars on a portable laptop and our favourite location is in this venue. Pop over and say hello if you see 1 of the team fretting over what to write. In recent weeks we’ve rubbed shoulders with Richard Curtis and the Lord (Andrew Lloyd-Webber) himself at this venue. The staff are always kind and this year’s biggest hits include the West End transfer of Heathers and the (too good not to transfer) Eugenius. It’s an up-and-coming experimental venue which is really hitting its stride.

5. Young Vic Tickets

We loved Twelfth Night but it’s a little early to be sure quite how transformative new Artistic Director Kwame Kwei-Armah will be. Although we’re excited already about The Convert, Jesus Hopped The A Train and Sharon D.Clarke/Arinze Kene (both featured above) in Marianne Elliott’s Death of A Salesman. Kwei-Armah has a tough act to follow because West End transfer The Inheritance had us both laughing and in tears here.

  • Who should win? Tell us in the comments below. Want to know why we like this shortlist? Click on the links above. Winner revealed 29/12/18.
  • Enjoyed this shortlist? Follow its author on Twitter @NeilDurham, email neildurham3@gmail.com and check us out on Instagram and Facebook

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