New shows coming to London this week include The Children’s Hour at the Comedy Theatre starring Keira Knightley and Elisabeth Moss; the Royal Court’s award-winning Clybourne Park to the Wyndham’s Theatre; and Will & Grace star Leslie Jordan in his Trip Down the Pink Carpet.

The Children’s Hour

The Children's HourLillian Hellman’s classic, controversial play started previews at the Comedy Theatre on Saturday (22 January 2011), with an official opening night on 9 February.

The play is generating much interest but more because of the casting than the subject matter: when the play premiered in 1934 it was swiftly banned in London and Boston for its story of two school mistresses accused of being lesbian lovers by a school girl. Rather, this new production directed by Ian Rickson at the Comedy Theatre is in the papers for its starry casting. Hollywood actress Keira Knightley is back in the venue after her 2009  run in The Misanthrope, and is joined by Elisabeth Moss, aka Peggy from Mad Men, as well as Oscar winning actress Ellen Burstyn.

Ex-Royal Court artistic director Ian Rickson will direct The Children’s Hour, following his huge hit with Jez Butterworth’s Jerusalem in 2009.

Book tickets to The Children’s Hour at the Comedy Theatre

Leslie Jordan – My Trip Down The Pink Carpet

Leslie Jordan: My Trip Down The Pink CarpetHilarious American actor Leslie Jordan brings his outrageous show to London. Best known for his role in Will & Grace, Jordan tells an entertaining collection of true life stories from small-town USA to the pink carpet of Hollywood.

Self-styled as “the gayest man I know”, Leslie Jordan reveals his childhood agonies, dangerous temptations, and revealing celebrity encounters — from Boy George to George Clooney — in his laugh-out-loud show about Hollywood, fame, addiction, gay culture, and learning to love oneself.

Special offer: Save £18.50 on tickets to Leslie Jordan – My Trip Down The Pink Carpet at the Apollo Theatre

Clybourne Park

Clybourne ParkThe Royal Court brings its Evening Standard award-winning play Clybourne Park into the West End for a limited run.

Bruce Norris’ satirical comedy transfers to the Wyndham’s Theatre from 28 January staring Sophie Thompson and Stephen Campbell Moore, and is directed by Dominic Cooke.

Bruce Norris’s hilarious satire explores the fault line between the worlds of race and property, contrasting late 50’s Chicago to the present day.

Book tickets to Clybourne Park at the Wyndham’s Theatre

COMING SOON

IN ONE WEEK…

Frankenstein starts previews at the National starring Benedict Cumberbatch and Jonny Lee Miller (from 5 February). Lee Mead waves goodbye to Wicked at the Apollo Victoria (5 February).

IN TWO WEEKS…

Shoes the Musical – the hugely successful Sadler’s Wells show – is West End bound at the Peacock Theatre from 8 February. The Children’s Hour gets its official opening night at the Comedy Theatre on 9 February. And The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee starts previews as the Donmar Warehouse from 11 February.