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Ian McKellen On Stage

Ian McKellen is to celebrate his 80th birthday next year by raising funds for theatres, with a new solo show which will play on 80 stages across the UK.

It all begins in January 2019 with a performance at the National Theatre on the Monday 28 January. He will return to the National Theatre again on Sunday 15 September 2019 for a Closing Night Gala performance.

Ian McKellen says:
“I’m celebrating my 80th birthday by touring a new solo show to theatres I know well and a few that I don’t. The show starts with Gandalf and will probably end with an invitation to act with me on stage. In-between there will be anecdotes and acting. I open at my local arts centre in January and end up by August in Orkney.

Live theatre has always been thrilling to me, as an actor and in the audience. Growing up in Lancashire, I was grateful to those companies who toured beyond London and I’ve always enjoyed repaying that debt by touring up and down the country myself, with the National Theatre, Royal Shakespeare Company, Prospect Theatre, the Actors’ Company, as well as with commercial productions. Sean Mathias, the director and I have worked together for stage and screen, many happy times.”

Ticket prices for 28 January:

  • £50, £42, £38, £30, £15

Ticket prices for 28 January:

  • £75, £100  - includes a ticket for this most special performance and a glass of fizz.
  • £200 - join special guests on the red carpet and stay post-show for the closing night party. For more information and to book please contact
  • All proceeds from these performances will go towards the National Theatre’s work in and with communities across the UK.

PLEASE NOTE: Booking will be available to the general public from 10am on Thursday 15 November.

For more information, visit the National Theatre website

Discover National Theatre


The National Theatre is an internationally-renowned arts centre with three auditoriums presenting new writing, classics, comedies and musicals. Responsible for smash-hits such as War Horse and One Man, Two Guvnors, the venue presents over 20 productions every year.

NT is committed to nurturing new talent, from writers and directors to creative artists and performers - with much of this work carried out at the NT Studio. Thanks to the Clore Learning Centre, the venue also acts as an educational hub managing a range of learning programmes.

In addition to the innovative productions, enjoy backstage tours, free exhibition and a variety of restaurants, cafes and bars.

Discover the National Theatre

The National Theatre has a worldwide reputation for its award-winning shows, with recent successes including the international smash-hits War Horse and One Man, Two Guvnors.

In its three theatres, the National presents over 20 new productions each year, from new plays to classics, comedies and musicals. You’ll find a shop full of wonderfully original books and gifts, and plenty of places to eat and drink. You can discover more about theatre with Backstage Tours and Platforms , and enjoy free exhibitions, live foyer music. See below for what's on.