Bleak Expectations  Tickets
Bleak Expectations : What to expect - 1
Bleak Expectations : What to expect - 2
Bleak Expectations : What to expect - 3

Bleak Expectations Tickets

Bleak Expectations : What to expect - 1
Bleak Expectations : What to expect - 2
Bleak Expectations : What to expect - 3
Bleak Expectations  Tickets

About Bleak Expectations

"A wickedly inventive parody of Victorian melodrama" The Times

Join a medley of much-loved faces including Tom Allen, Adjoa Andoh, Alexander Armstrong, Jo Brand, Jack Dee, Stephen Fry, Nish Kumar, Lee Mack, Stephen Mangan, Ben Miller or Sue Perkins* in this “irresistible”(The Times) stage adaptation of the award-winning BBC Radio 4 comedy series Bleak Expectations. Follow the hilarious misadventures of the young Pip Bin - tragic half orphan, hopeless romantic and would-be-hero - as this glorious Victorian mash-up arrives at the Criterion Theatre for a limited season.

Not all at the same time, obviously, that would be ridiculous*

Bleak Expectations is the riotous story that Charles Dickens might havewritten after drinking too much gin. Follow Pip’s extraordinary exploits with sisters Pippa and Poppy plus best friend Harry Biscuit as they attempt to escape the calculating clutches of the dastardly Mr Gently Benevolent, defeat the hideous Hardthrasher siblings, and deflect disaster at every turn!

Will evil be vanquished by virtue? Can love triumph over hate? Escape with this joyfully anarchic comedy featuring barbarous boarding schools, contemptible conspiracies, roaring romances, devilish disguises, and definitely, probably, hopefully, a happy ending!

  • 4-9 July: Stephen Mangan
  • 11-16 July: Hugh Dennis
  • 18-23 July: Tom Allen
  • 25-30 July: Jack Dee
  • 1-6 August: Alexander Armstrong
  • 8-13 August: Stephen Fry

Important Information
We strongly recommend and ask you to wear a face covering during your visit to The Criterion — including during the performance - unless you have an exemption.

Run time

2 hours 15 minutes (inc. interval)

Start date

May 3rd, 2023

End date

August 13th, 2023



10+. Guidance on Content: This performance uses prop guns and contains loud noises, haze and at points flashes of light.

Bleak Expectations : What to expect - 1
Bleak Expectations : What to expect - 2
Bleak Expectations : What to expect - 3


Audiences Say
Entertaining, Funny, Clever, Delightful, Hilarious

72 reviews on Show-Score

Brilliant writting, Cosy, Entertaining, Farcical hilarity, Clever
96 / 100
Stage Door Matt
Entertaining, Farce, Funny, Great writing, Hilarious
95 / 100
Catherine 352
Great acting, Funny, Entertaining, Delightful, Great writing
95 / 100
Delightful, Hilarious, Funny, Entertaining, Clever
90 / 100

Stars on stage

Julian Clary

Julian Clary

Stephen Fry

Stephen Fry

Stephen Mangan

Stephen Mangan

Robert Lindsay

Robert Lindsay

Bleak Expectations cast and creative team

By: Mark Evans Cast list: Nina Wadia, Dermot O’Leary, Sally Philips, Sue Perkins, Julian Clary, Adjoa Andoh, Lee Mack, Stephen Mangan, Hugh Dennis, Tom Allen, Jack Dee, Alexander Armstrong, Stephen Fry, Ben Miller, Nish Kumar, Robert Lindsay, Craig Ferguson, Ashh Blackwood, Shane David-Joseph, J.J. Henry, John Hopkins, Dom Hodson, Serena Manteghi, Marc Pickering, Rachel Summers


Criterion Theatre

218-223 Piccadilly, Piccadilly Circus, London, United Kingdom, SW1Y 4XA


Location: West End
Railway station: Charing Cross
Bus numbers: (Haymarket) 3, 6, 12, 13, 19, 23, 38, 88, 139; (Regent Street) 14, 15, 22, 94, 159, 453
Night bus numbers: (Haymarket) 6, 12, 23, 88, 139, 159, N3, N13, N18, N19, N38, N97, N136, N550, N551; (Regent Street) 14, 94, 159, 453, N15, N22, N109
Car park: Leicester Square, Whitcomb Street (3 mins)
Directions from tube: The theatre can be seen on Piccadilly Circus next to the Eros statue.


Unfortunately, tickets for this event are no longer available.

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