You might know Imelda Staunton best from playing Dolores Umbridge in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix or from portraying Queen Elizabeth II in the final two seasons of The Crown — her performance in The Crown’s fifth season actually earned Staunton a nomination for the Best Actress Award at the Golden Globes.


But, did you know Staunton began her career on the stage?

The BAFTA Award-winning actress started her acting career in 1976 in repertory theatre, and has performed in a variety of plays and musicals such as Wizard of Oz, Uncle Vanya, Guys and Dolls.

Staunton has won four Laurence Olivier Awards — three for Best Actress for her roles in the musicals Into the Woods, Sweeney Todd, and Gypsy, and one for Best Performance in a Supporting Role for her work in both A Chorus of Disapproval and The Corn Is Green — and she’s been nominated for a phenomenal 13 more.

Now, Staunton will return to the theatre once again in the musical Hello, Dolly. The theatre show will see the 67-year-old reunite with director Dominic Cooke, who she worked alongside for the critically acclaimed revival of the musical Follies. Also joining Staunton in Hello, Dolly are Olivier Award-winning actress Jenna Russell, Andy Nyman who is best known for his play Ghost Stories, and Tyrone Huntley, who portrayed Judas in Jesus Christ Superstar.

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Hello, Dolly was initially scheduled to run for 30 weeks in 2020 but, like a lot of things that year, due to COVID the musical was delayed. Now, we’re finally getting the Hello, Dolly performances we need!

Are you looking for ways to spend the Christmas holidays? Then take a look at the best UK Christmas light trails, best Christmas events in London and best UK Christmas markets.

What is the Broadway musical Hello, Dolly about?

how to get hello dolly tickets the london palladium west end 2024 uk
Photo by Movie Poster Image Art/Getty Images Photo by Movie Poster Image Art/Getty Images

Hello, Dolly can be traced back to 1938 with Thornton Wilder’s The Merchant of Yonkers. This farce inspired the 1964 Hello, Dolly musical which was performed on Broadway.

Perhaps the most famous Hello, Dolly adaptation is the 1969 movie starring Barbra Streisand and Walter Matthau. The 1969 film won an incredible three Academy Awards, including Best Score in a Musical Picture, and was nominated in four other Academy Awards categories, including Best Picture.

The plot of the musical is as follows: an interfering socialite turned matchmaker, Dolly Levi, travels to Yonkers in New York to find a wife for ‘half-a-millionaire’ Horace Vandergelder. However, the plan changes when Dolly decides that the next match she makes should be for herself.

Is Hello, Dolly coming to London?

Hello, Dolly is indeed coming to London! The musical will be taking residence in The London Palladium in the capital city’s West End for a limited time only.

The London Palladium is a Grade II listed West End theatre located on Argyll Street. As it’s in Soho, it’s super simple to get to via public transport, and the nearest stations are Oxford Circus for Bakerloo, Central, and Victoria lines, and Bond Street for Elizabeth, Central, and Jubilee lines.

Hello, Dolly will be at The London Palladium Saturday 6th July to Saturday 14th September 2024.

How to get Hello, Dolly tickets for London 2024

Pre-sale tickets for Hello, Dolly went on sale at 10am on Wednesday 6th December, and to be eligible for pre-sale, theatre-lovers had to sign-up via the LW Theatres website.

General on sale is on sale right now, having gone live at 10am on Friday 8th December.


For more exciting shows happening this Christmastime, take a look at the best UK pantomimes, best Christmas shows in London, and best London theatre shows.