Last Updated 06/03/2019.
Holding onto her crown as queen of the London theatre scene is West End Wilma. Created back in 2012, ‘Wilma’ was the face of the blog, chatting with the stars and attending glitzy press nights but in 2017, Ed Baker – aka Wilma’s son – came clean as the man behind the creation of West End Wilma. Ed and his mum can often be found in the West End enjoying the delights of the stage and reviewing them for their loyal audience, from musicals to brand-new plays. Not limited to the theatrical wonders of the capital, West End Wilma also covers shows around the UK, including those at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.
Moving into second place is Musical Theatre News, a blog with the aim of providing all the latest information and news about musicals in the West End, on tour and across the UK. The blog was created by Linda Sandeman who helps her readers find the right show, writing snappy reviews alongside detailed cast lists and handy travel information for anyone unfamiliar with London theatres. Musical Theatre News also has the latest news and gossip out of the West End from cast announcements to the dates for opening nights.
Taking third spot in our theatre ranking is MyTheatreMates. Created by Mark Shenton and Terri Paddock, they wanted to share their love of the theatre and celebrate the talent both on and off stage. Both Mark and Terri are theatre critics in their own right and, together with their team of Mates, they bring years of experience to readers with reviews for a variety of plays, from small independent productions to touring shows across the UK. MyTheatreMates has even branched out into the world of awards, creating the #AlsoRecognised Awards, celebrating a wide range of theatrical talent.
Musical Theatre Review was created by Lisa Martland back in Spring 2013 to cover everything to do with musical theatre, from the West End to Broadway. Featuring news, reviews and interviews, Musical Theatre Review is one to bookmark for anyone keen to stay up-to-date with the latest productions, especially those making their way over the pond, from the bright lights of Broadway to London’s West End.
5. Run Riot
Run Riot started life back in 2004 as an informal, irregular email bulletin and has since grown into a detailed and informative blog with a huge team of contributors keeping readers updated with the latest cultural happenings across theatre, dance, film and music. Founded by Jamie McLaren, Run Riot has kept its passion for the arts, event sharing a broad mix of events including launch events, live music and exhibitions, which might have otherwise gone under the radar.
6. Stage Review
Anne Cox, journalist and blogger, created Stage Review to share her love of the theatre. Reviewing productions across the Home Counties, London and the Midlands, Stage Review aims to promote professional theatre throughout the country. Anne reviews a variety of plays, from West End productions to first-time independent creations, providing any theatre lover with plenty of inspiration for their next trip. Stage Review keeps readers in the know with all the latest gossip from the stage, whether it’s the latest tour or surprise casting announcements.
There Ought To Be Clowns was created by Ian Foster as an outlet for his love of the theatre and live performance. Staying very much off-stage, this does not stop Ian writing funny, informative and detailed reviews of the hundreds of performances he gets to see. Covering VAULT festival in detail, the sheer volume of productions Ian reviews for There Ought To Be Clowns is hugely impressive and allows his readers to get a feel for the different types of plays on offer, which is perfect for anyone who’s new to the world of theatre.
Lauren Humphreys created Glasgow Theatre Blog to publicise and review arts events in Glasgow and the surrounding area. Covering the arts entirely, Lauren reviews live music, plays and musicals, from local theatre companies to the West End musicals on tour. Glasgow Theatre Blog also keeps readers informed about the latest events coming up in and around the city each month, so if you’re planning a trip to Glasgow you can check out the must-see shows on while you’re there.
Libby Purves started theatreCat back in 2013 when her time as The Times Chief Theatre Critic came to an end. theatreCat aims to provide an honest review of productions across the UK, providing a service not only to theatregoers but also to the producers, directors and actors themselves, sharing an honest review of their work. Libby has even created her own rating system using mice, the interpretation of which is left up to the reader.
Freelance editor and copywriter by day, and ‘theatre darling’ by night, Stacey Meadwell is the face behind Rev Stan’s theatre blog. Describing herself as a fan, but not a ‘fan girl’, Stacey writes honest and detailed reviews, from West End hits to smaller productions and is open-minded when it comes to different genres (excluding musicals)! Alongside regular reviews, Rev Stan’s theatre blog also has interviews with various people from the world of theatre, from actors to playwrights, giving her readers the scoop from behind the scenes.
Or explore the full list of Vuelio Top 10 Blogs here.
The fundamentals of working with bloggers are the same as with traditional journalists at traditional media outlets: respect their schedules; take time to read their material to learn their interests; and only contact them if/when they want to be contacted.
Vuelio’s blog ranking methodology takes into consideration social sharing, topic-related content and post frequency. Profiles of these theatre blogs and their authors can be found in the Vuelio Media Database.