Performing Arts, Drama & Theatre Studies Trips to London
For groups of performing arts and drama students London and the West End are likely to be the ultimate goal if they wish to pursue a career in the performing arts. Backstage theatre tours and performing arts workshops are available at venues across the city which aim to build on dance and drama skills, as well as give essential behind the scenes advice and access for aspiring performers.
We work closely with theatre agencies in the capital to offer you the best theatre seats and group prices for all the most popular West End shows, so that your tour to London is guaranteed to both excite and inspire your students.
Explore all of our London student tours
- Roles & responsibilities of theatre producers
- Theatrical processes and practices in interpreting and performing theatre
- The work of live theatre makers: performers, designers, directors, producers
Our sample itinerary provides you with an idea of the visits you can cover during your trip. We can tailor-make an itinerary to support your specific learning outcomes.
|1||Group Rail travel to London, drop bags at your accommodation||Walking Tour of Theatre Land and a West End Workshop||Dinner and West End Show|
|2||Tour of Globe Theatre and Workshop||Backstage Theatre Tour||Return Group Rail Travel|
|Morning||Group Rail travel to London, drop bags at your accommodation|
|Afternoon||Walking Tour of Theatre Land and a West End Workshop|
|Evening||Dinner and West End Show|
|Morning||Tour of Globe Theatre and Workshop|
|Afternoon||Backstage Theatre Tour|
|Evening||Return Group Rail Travel|
Price Shown includes
- Return rail travel (based on the fare from Birmingham stations)
- 1 night B&B accommodation
- Specialist group travel insurance
- Bespoke itinerary planning service
- Free place ratios
- Locate My Trip - live trip tracking app
- Online trip organiser & travel app
- 24/7 support whilst you are away
Reasons to Visit
Disney Theatrical Workshops
These 90-minute workshops are run by musical theatre performers from the hit Disney shows 'The Lion King' and 'Mary Poppins'. Students get to explore and perform extracts from the scripts as well as choreography and vocal tracks from the actual show, all under the guidance of professionally trained theatre artists. Choose from:
THE LION KING
Movement and Music: This popular general musical theatre workshop is suitable for all group types, mixed group experience levels and ages from 7 years old. Students will explore musical theatre and build on performance skills choosing either the ‘Circle of Life’ or ‘He Lives in You’.
Acting: Perfect for GCSE drama students to grow their acting skills. They will be working with script extracts from the show and asked to read their parts aloud to the group. The focus will be on characterisation, voice and moment, objective and intention and comedy.
Singing: An intermediate to advanced singing workshop for confident singers who have previous experience in singing three or four-part harmonies. Excellent for students studying music, school choirs and schools producing a musical to help define and develop their voices. The workshop is run like a show rehearsal and is about challenging themselves and being mindful of the group.
Dancing: Students will explore intricate West End choreography and is for intermediate to advanced dancers who are confident with dance terminology. This workshop is based on the ‘Lioness Chant’ and starts with floor stretching, moving onto a TA led warm up and will be run as a professional dance class.
Movement & Music: A general musical theatre workshop suitable for all group types, mixed group experience levels and ages from 7 years old. Students will explore musical theatre and build on performance skills. The content is very upbeat, celebratory and focuses on rhythm and ensemble movement.
Acting: Perfect for drama students to grow their acting skills. They will be working with script extracts from the show and asked to read their parts aloud to the group.The focus will be on characterisation, voice and moment, objective and intention and comedy.
West End Theatre Workshops
Workshops can be tailored to meet your exact requirements and to suit students at any Key Stage. All sessions are run by performing arts professionals who are working actors and experienced workshop leaders. Many of the workshops can be tailored to link in with a West End show. Students can take part in a workshop during the day and then watch a performance of the same show that evening. As well as performance based workshops, students can also learn about the technical side of theatre, including Stage Management, Production and Stage Make Up.
Warner Bros. Harry Potter Studio Tour
Discover the magic of the big screen and the behind-the-scenes secrets of the Harry Potter™ film series. Take your students on an enchanting tour of the actual sets used in the films; complete with authentic props and real costumes. You'll see animatronic characters and experience the stunning special effects along the way. Warner Bros. Studio Tour London celebrates and educates visitors of the artistry and craftsmanship in quality film production - on both sides of the camera.
School groups can enjoy specially-created educational lessons to complement and enhance the tour in brand new, state-of-the-art learning spaces. These lessons offer students authentic and relevant learning experiences in one of the most exciting and magical contexts: the production of Harry Potter. The film series is used as a case study to explain elements of film production, all of which align with KS2, 3, 4 and 5 learning objectives.
Royal Albert Hall Tours
A guide will take you on a fascinating journey through the history of this stunning and iconic building, opened in 1871 as the brain-child of Queen Victoria’s husband Prince Albert. Highlights of the tour include the breathtaking auditorium, exclusive access to the Royal Retiring Room, a look inside the Queen’s Box and an action-packed presentation featuring a selection of the huge range of events staged here.
Royal Opera House Tours
Backstage tours offer a unique glimpse behind the scenes of one of the busiest international opera houses in the world. Tours include an introduction to theatre's colourful history, an insight into it's recent re-development and a look at aspects of current productions. As the Royal Opera House is a fully working theatre, each tour is a unique experience, and may include opportunities to see The Royal Ballet in class, or the magnificent backstage technology in operation.
National Theatre Backstage Tours
Join a backstage tour at the National and explore one of the largest and most advanced theatres in the world. See three auditoriums, front of house, scenic workshops and backstage, and all in the company of well-informed, enthusiastic guides
Shakespeare's Globe Theatre Tour and Experience
The new Globe Experience combines an interactive look
at theatre-craft, the unique story of Shakespeare's Globe, and a guided tour of the Globe Theatre. Discover how they bring the magic of stories to life in a newly interpreted space beneath Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre! With help from experts, you’ll immerse yourself in the world of Shakespeare’s storytelling, from the creation of his works to the way they are interpreted today. Explore how different elements of stagecraft are combined to bring these stories to life in the beautiful and unique ‘Wooden O’ and candlelit Sam Wanamaker Playhouse.
This tour can be combined with the GCSE study day.
Shakespeare’s Globe Lively Action Workshops
These 90-minute sessions comprise of a 30-minute guided tour of the iconic Globe Theatre and auditorium and a 60-minute workshop led by a Globe Education Practitioner. These practical and interactive workshops are tailored to your key stage and the Shakespeare play of your choice and use a range of activities and games designed to draw out elements of the plays’ characters and themes.
Workshop Themes for Key Stage 3
‘Shakespeare's Language, Shakespeare's Stage’ - In this session, students approach Shakespeare’s plays through the context of the Globe playhouse. Through practical exploration, students are encouraged to develop an understanding of Shakespeare’s characters and stories, and to engage with the text as a script for performance. Different dramatic techniques are used to explore Shakespeare’s plays and deepen students’ critical understanding.
Workshop Themes for Key Stage 4
- Performance conditions at the Globe, exploring how this shapes playing style and language
- National curriculum study of a Shakespeare text for coursework or exam study at KS4, making connections between time and literary traditions and exploring language as a key to engaging with character and structure.
Workshop Themes for Key Stage 5
- The relationship between text and performance
- How theatre is affected by cultural and social influences
- How language and form shape meaning
Victoria & Albert Museum Workshops
The V&A museum houses the national collection of performing arts which teaches about the history and process of performance from rehearsals to opening night through its display of posters, set and costume designs. It also runs a programme of workshops to support students of English, Drama and Performing Arts at both KS4 and 5. Examples include ‘Texts in Practice’, ‘Design for Performance’ and ‘Stage makeup’.
London Dungeons - English & Drama Workshop
The shows at the London Dungeon are performed up to 80 times a day. With actors learning the scripts, being directed on set, applying makeup effects and performing a show that takes you back to a darker time in London’s history.
This drama workshop will focus on the performance of the shows, from acting varied characters with different accents, to how to apply effective makeup; as well as the importance of audio, lighting and costume design.
- Learn how to perform in a fast paced environment, focusing on vocal care, accents and emotional portrayal of characters
- Learn how to apply effective make up and design sound and lighting
- Perform a short show together
The lastminute.com London Eye
The famous London Eye is one of the world’s highest observation wheels, standing at 135 metres high. The wheel has thirty-two capsules, each of which holds 25 people and views possible as far away as twenty-five miles on a clear day.
The View from The Shard
The View from the Shard is situated on floors 68, 69 and 72, almost twice the height of any other viewing platform in London, where you can take in all of London at once with 360 degree views of up to 40 miles long.
Sightseeing Tours by bus
Hop-on hop-off bus tours are great for general sightseeing, giving access to all the major sites. Departing from Grosvenor Gardens it includes Buckingham Palace, the Tower of London, Tower Bridge, St Paul's Cathedral, Trafalgar Square, Big Ben, London Eye and Piccadilly Circus.
Thames River Cruises
A great opportunity for you to discover the 'must-see' sights in London. Watch as the River Thames weaves its way through the heart of London and see the history of this city around every bend. Cruises depart frequently from Westminster Pier, Waterloo (London Eye) Pier, Tower Pier and Greenwich Pier.
IFS Cloud Cable Car
Rising to a height of 90 metres, the IFS Cloud Cable Car offers you an exciting 1.1km cable car journey across the Thames on the UK’s only urban cable car connecting the Greenwich Peninsula and the Royal Victoria Dock.
The London Dungeons
Transport yourself back to the darkest moments in the capital's history within the deep depths of the London Dungeons.
London Christmas Markets
At Christmas the South Bank of the River is transformed into a wintry wonderland, where global cuisine and an artisan Christmas market come together in one sparkling location. Amble past wooden chalets which line the banks of the Thames and pick up gorgeous stocking fillers from the Winter Market. Or, tuck into some Christmas fare underneath the glittering Christmas lights.
In Hyde Park, you can truly immerse yourself in the festive atmosphere of Winter Wonderland, one of the biggest Christmas markets in London. Other locations for Christmas Markets in London include Leicester Square, London Bridge City and Greenwich. Many of these pop-up London markets appear in mid-November and stay open until the New Year
Madame Tussauds is one of London’s most popular tourist attractions with over 400 wax works of celebrities, politicians, pop stars and actors. A fully interactive experience, Madame Tussauds will inspire, enthuse and immerse pupils in celebrity culture and modern media as they walk among the stars!
Downloadable lesson plans are available to enhance and support your visit which will explore the media, fake news and celebrity culture.
The ArcelorMittal Orbit in the Queen Elizabeth Park, Stratford which is the iconic structure of the London 2012 Games and has the longest and tallest tunnel slide in the world.
Take the lift up to the viewing platform, 80 meters high, and after marvelling at the view take the slide down which lasts a thrilling 40 seconds! Go back to the top and take some time learning about the city on the interactive touchscreens or making use of the free Key Stage 1-4 resources before walking back down the winding staircase with its 455 steps.
You can book with or without the slide and you can choose to stay the whole day in the park by taking a behind the scenes tour at the iconic London Stadium, swimming at the London Aquatics Centre or visiting the Lee Valley Velopark; alternatively, explore the parklands and waterways with a local Blue Badge guide.
Tower Bridge, which crosses the River Thames, was built between 1886 and 1894 and is an iconic symbol of London with its two towers and bridge deck which opens to allow tall ships through. You can walk across the lower bridge deck but the twin towers and high-level glass walkways and Victorian engine rooms are part of the Tower Bridge Exhibition.
West End Theatre Tickets
The majority of student groups who visit London like to round off their trip by seeing a show. We can also book pre-theatre meals at nearby restaurants for you. Save up to 50% on the normal ticket price by attending a midweek (Mon-Thurs) evening or matinee performance. The majority of top West End shows offer these affordable discounted tickets to student groups year round (excluding school holiday dates).
THE UNTOLD STORY OF THE WITCHES OF OZ...
WICKED tells the incredible untold story of an unlikely but profound friendship between two young women who first meet as sorcery students at Shiz University: the blonde and very popular Glinda and a misunderstood green girl named Elphaba. Following an encounter with The Wonderful Wizard, their friendship reaches a crossroads and their lives take very different paths. Glinda's unflinching desire for popularity sees her seduced by power while Elphaba's determination to remain true to herself, and to those around her, will have unexpected and shocking consequences for her future. Their extraordinary adventures in Oz will ultimately see them fulfil their destinies as Glinda The Good and the Wicked Witch of the West.
WICKED is suitable for a general audience. As a guide to parents and guardians, it is recommended for ages 7+
NOTE: There are other shows/plays on offer not featured. All are subject to availability.
Official Wicked Workshops offer a programme of engaging sessions that offer outstanding, unique experiences and are tailored to meet the needs of your group.
The Official Wicked Wellbeing Workshop, exploring practical and meaningful ways to enhance our physical and mental wellbeing.
The Official Wicked Anti-Bullying Workshop, developed in partnership with the Anti-Bullying Alliance, challenging us all to look beyond first impressions.
The Official Wicked Musical Theatre Workshop, a multi-layered workshop focusing on storytelling for musical theatre
Matilda the Musical
Matilda The Musical is the multi-award winning musical from the Royal Shakespeare Company, inspired by the beloved book by the incomparable Roald Dahl. With book by Dennis Kelly and original songs by Tim Minchin, Matilda The Musical is the story of an extraordinary little girl who, armed with a vivid imagination and a sharp mind, dares to take a stand and change her own destiny.
Recommended for ages 6 and above.
NOTE: There are other shows/plays on offer not featured. All are subject to availability.
The Lion King
Set against the majesty of the Serengeti Plains and to the evocative rhythms of Africa, Disney's multi award-winning musical uses breath-taking masks and puppetry to create pure theatrical magic. At its heart is the powerful and moving story of Simba - the epic adventure of his journey from wide-eyed cub to his destined role as King of the Pridelands.
NOTE: There are other shows/plays on offer not featured. All are subject to availability.
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
Based on an original new story by J.K. Rowling, Jack Thorne and John Tiffany, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is the eighth story in the Harry Potter series and the first official Harry Potter story to be presented on stage. The critically acclaimed production is the most awarded new play in theatre history, winning 24 major theatre awards in the UK and is the most awarded play in the history of the Olivier Awards, winning a record-breaking nine awards including Best New Play.
It was always difficult being Harry Potter and it isn't much easier now that he is an overworked employee of the Ministry of Magic, a husband and father of three school-age children. While Harry grapples with a past that refuses to stay where it belongs, his youngest son Albus must struggle with the weight of a family legacy he never wanted. As past and present fuse ominously, both father and son learn the uncomfortable truth: sometimes, darkness comes from unexpected places.
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is one play presented in two Parts, which are intended to be seen in order on the same day (matinee and evening) or on two consecutive evenings.
Educational resources are available.
On show at: Palace Theatre
School rates available:
Wednesday - Part One 2:00pm & Part Two 7:30pm
Thursday - Part One 7:30pm
Friday - Part Two 7:30pm
Set on a Greek Island Paradise, the story of a daughter on the eve of her wedding and her quest to discover the identify of her father, all set to the music of ABBA.
NOTE: There are other shows/plays on offer not featured. All are subject to availability.
Back to the Future The Musical
Welcome to Hill Valley! Take an electrifying ride back in time as the 1985 blockbuster film and pop culture phenomenon arrives in London's West End as a groundbreaking new musical adventure!
When Marty McFly finds himself transported back to 1955 in a time machine built by the eccentric scientist Doc Brown, he accidentally changes the course of history. Now he’s in a race against time to fix the present, escape the past and send himself... back to the future.
Adapting this iconic story for the stage are the movie’s creators Bob Gale (Back to the Future trilogy) and Robert Zemeckis (Forrest Gump). The production features original music by multi-Grammy winners Alan Silvestri (Avengers: Endgame) and Glen Ballard (Michael Jackson’s Man in the Mirror), alongside hit songs from the movie including The Power of Love, Johnny B Goode, Earth Angel and Back in Time.
Tony Award-winning director John Rando leads the Tony and Olivier Award-winning creative team.
Strap yourself in for a thrilling theatrical experience!
When BACK TO THE FUTURE: THE MUSICAL hits 88mph, you’re gonna see some serious… entertainment. Book your tickets yesterday!
Adelphi Theatre, London
Hamilton is an award-winning West End musical production about the life of Alexander Hamilton, the American Founding Father. Taking place in London's Victoria Palace Theatre in the West End, the must-see musical covers the lifetime of Alexander and his role in shaping America's very foundations.
On show at: Victoria Palace Theatre
Times: Monday – Saturday 7.30pm. Matinees – Thursday & Saturday 2.30pm.
Direct from a sensational run up in Manchester — where it played to sold-out crowds and standing ovations — the new comedy musical MRS. DOUBTFIRE is ready to dazzle and delight the West End from 12 May 2023!
Out-of-work actor Daniel will do anything for his kids. After losing custody in a messy divorce, he creates the alter ego of Scottish nanny Euphegenia Doubtfire in a desperate attempt to stay in their lives. As his new character takes on a life of its own, Mrs. Doubtfire teaches Daniel more than he bargained for about how to be a father.
MRS. DOUBTFIRE has been created by a transatlantic team of award-winning artists, with a book by Karey Kirkpatrick and John O’Farrell, original music and lyrics by Wayne and Karey Kirkpatrick (the Tony Award-nominated team behind Something Rotten!, along with O’Farrell), direction by 4-time Tony winner Jerry Zaks (Hello, Dolly!), scenic design by David Korins (Hamilton), choreography by Lorin Latarro (Waitress), and music supervision by Ethan Popp (Tina: The Tina Turner Musical).
HADESTOWN takes you on an unforgettable journey to the underworld and back, intertwining two mythic love stories – that of young dreamers Orpheus and Eurydice, and that of King Hades and his wife Persephone.
Show at Lyric Theatre
Times Tuesday – Saturday 7.30pm Sunday 3pm Matinee Thursday & Saturday 2.30pm
Running time 2hrs 25 mins
School prices available Tuesday – Thursday evenings and matinee Thursday and Saturday
Cameron Mackintosh’s legendary production is indisputably the world’s most popular musical seen by over 70 million people worldwide. This spectacular adaptation of Victor Hugo’s masterpiece continues to thrill audiences night after night.
On show at: Sondheim Theatre
Times: Monday - Saturday evenings at 7.30pm, Thursday and Saturday matinees at 2.30pm
Running time: 2hrs 50mins
School prices available: Monday - Thursday evenings, Thursday matinees.
Victoria and Albert Museum
Founded in 1852, it is well known for the wide variety of its collection. The items include furniture, fashion and textiles, sculpture, paintings, silver, glass, ceramics, jewellery, books, prints and photographs which illustrate the artistic life of many different cultures from all over the world.
Tate Modern is Britain's new collection of modern art. The museum contains works from 1900 to present day and includes Dali, Picasso, Matisse, Rothko, Warhol and more contemporary artists. There is also a wide range of temporary exhibitions and public programmes.
The Science Museum, founded in 1857, is one of London’s major tourist attractions, attracting 3.3 million visitors annually. They do not charge for admission, however, there may be a charge for temporary exhibitions.
The Science Museum holds a collection of over 300,000 items, including such famous items such as Stephenson’s Rocket, Puffing Billy (the oldest surviving steam locomotive), the first jet engine, the Apollo 10 Command module, hundreds of interactive exhibits and an IMAX 3D Cinema.
The Science Museum is made up of a number of themed galleries including; Power, Exploring Space, Making of the Modern World, Flight, Information Age, Engineer Your Future and Medicine.
Warner Bros. Studio Tour - Harry Potter
Go behind-the-scenes in the making of Harry Potter and see how many things the camera never showed. From breathtakingly detailed sets to stunning costumes, props and animatronics, Warner Bro. Studio Tour provides a unique showcase of the extraordinary British artistry, technology and talent that went into making one of the most successful film franchises. Short workshops are also available in a variety of subjects including set design, camera choices and many more.
Natural History Museum
The Natural History Museum exhibits a vast range of specimens from various segments of natural history.
As well as being located in a stunning and striking Romanesque architecture building, which is considered a work of art in its own right, the museum is famous for the dinosaurs and is home to over 80 million specimens spanning 4.5 billion years of Earth's history.
The museum offers too much to mention here but have collections under the categories of: oceans, human evolution, space, dinosaurs, British wildlife as well as visiting collections and exhibitions. Check out their website for up-to-date information. https://www.nhm.ac.uk/
ZSL London Zoo is the world's oldest scientific zoo and one of London’s main tourist attractions, located on the edge of Regents Park.
They have a range of online resources available to download and use before, during and after a visit to ZSL London Zoo. Some of the resources are for the pupils to use and some are for the accompanying adults.
The £25 million London Aquarium is the first attraction of its kind in London and is one of Europe's largest exhibitions of global aquatic life displayed in over 2 million litres of water.
Visit to discover the amazing marine life at SEA LIFE London Aquarium, find out about penguins, sea turtles, sharks, jellyfish and much more. Travel through Pacific Ocean tunnels, tropical rainforests (and even a shark reef!) to see the different habitats on planet earth!
The Ultimate Harry Potter Experience!
Experience J.K. Rowling’s magical universe with two great experiences in London this summer 2022 – The Harry Potter Photographic Exhibition in Covent Garden and the award-winning two part show - Harry Potter and the Cursed Child.
Harry Potter Photographic Exhibition in Covent Garden - journey through the memories of years of magical filmmaking in a display of behind-the-scenes images, never before seen in one place.
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child - the award-winning two part show -19 years after Harry, Ron, and Hermione saved the wizarding world, they’re back in a most extraordinary new adventure told live on stage!
Available for Wednesdays only from 25th May - 13th July 2022.
Horizon 22 is London's highest free viewing platform. Located on Level 58, the viewing platform offers 300-degree views of London, showcasing its most iconic landmarks.
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What you say
Both workshops brilliant! Shows excellent! Harry potter studios excellent! Globe theatre excellent! I will definitely use EST again. Fab! Bodmin College
The theatre visits were both exceptional but Harry Potter was literally out of this world. Absolutely fantastic place and thoroughly enjoyed by all. Vikki Rees School of Performance
Once again delighted with the service we have received from beginning to end with EST. Queen Elizabeths Grammar School
I will continue to use EST as each year our annual London trip gets better and better. Kings Leadership Academy
An excellent trip which was thoroughly enjoyed by staff and students. I received great support throughout. Sir John Deanes College
This was my second journey via European Study tours and I would highly recommend the company to anyone bringing groups to London. Pianca School
The Matilda workshop was excellent and the students gained a lot from the experience especially the q&a at the end. The Globe workshop was good, the workshop leader was great and offered to change the workshop to something relevant to being studied by some students. Excellent communication by everyone, Sam was great with moving the itinerary around were possible to meet our needs and we are very grateful for Sam arranging an extra student to attend at the last minute. Alder Grange Community and Technology School
I was very happy with the booking process. Both Clare and Kelli helped me iron out various problems and were both very accommodating and supportive. It was their focus and determination to help that made this a viable trip for our students as it was tailored to our needs. ITINERARY It was varied and everything ran smoothly. The singing workshop was super - especially with the addition of a visit from a cast member! The kids were thrilled. We thought it was excellent and will definitely book with EST again in the future. Sir Thomas Richs Grammar School