The Big Life

It’s 1948 and on board the Windrush Empire, journeying over from the West Indies to England, Ferdy, Bernie, Dennis and Lennie are full of expectations and aspirations. Eager to make successes of themselves, they are optimistic about what the future holds, plus Dennis is certain that showing his brother’s posthumous medal from World War II will mean he is welcomed heartily. Building this new life will take focus and sacrifice, and the young men make the bold decision to forswear wine and women for three whole years and devote themselves to their future in London. Sybil, Mary, Zulieka and Kathy have other ideas. They know that man cannot live by bread alone! So each one's resolve is put to the test as the reality of life in a less-than-welcoming England, not to mention the weather, makes forgoing the warmth of female company hard to resist. Will the men stick with their idea of The Big Life, or will Cupid have the final say? A joyful and uplifting production, where the story of Shakespeare’s Love’s Labour’s Lost meets that of the Windrush generation in a fun-packed Ska musical that’ll have you dancing in your seats. THE BIG LIFE returns to the stage 20 years after its Stratford East premiere and subsequent West End transfer. Presented by Theatre Royal Stratford East. __Access Performances__
Relaxed environment: Saturday 9th March 2.30pm
BSL interpreted: Thursday 14th March 7.30pm
Captioned: Friday 15th March 7.30pm
Audio described: Saturday 16th March 2.30pm

Age Restrictions

10+ (contains one use of a strong racial slur)

Performance Times

Now taking bookings for performances up until Sat 30th March 2024.

Show times for each day are below.















The Big Life photo from the show The Big Life photo from the show
The Big Life photo from the show

Theatre Royal Stratford East Details

Buses Icon Bus routes: 25, 69, 86, 97, 104, 108, 158, 238, 241, 257, 262, 276, 308, 339, 425, 473, D8, N8, N86

Night Buses Icon Night buses: N8, N86

London Underground Icon Tube lines: Central Line, Jubilee Line

London Underground Icon Nearest tube: Stratford Station

Congestion Zone Icon In congestion zone?: No

Facilities at Theatre Royal Stratford East

Disabled toilets

Infrared hearing loop


Wheelchair accessible

Theatre Royal Stratford East Location

Gerry Raffles Square, Stratford, London, E15 1BN
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Please note: The location shown on the map is an approximate location of the theatre. In the majority of cases the theatre will be marked on the map so please make sure you locate the exact location yourself. If the theatre is not shown on the map please make sure you locate the correct road name and take account of the directions.

The Big Life

Theatre Royal Stratford East, London

Running until: Sat 30th March 2024

Running time: Approx 2 hours 30 minutes (incl. interval)