Irish star Andrew Scott has suggested that there should be weekly sales of West End theatre tickets as young people struggle to afford £150 tickets.
The 47-year-old actor, known as the “hot” priest in the comedy series Fleabag and as James “Jim” Moriarty in the detective show Sherlock, has won Olivier Awards for his theatre work.
His latest production, Vanya, an adaption of Russian playwright Anton Chekhov’s family drama Uncle Vanya will be shown in cinemas from February 22.
When the critically acclaimed play was on at the Duke of York’s Theatre in September, there was a ballot for £10 tickets for under 30s, amid reported sales of seats for up to £180.
Scott told Isobel Gough on BBC Radio 4’s Broadcasting House programme that he thinks the current situation is “a problem”.
He said: “No matter how zeitgeisty or how modern you think your play is, if you are having to spend £150, no person between the age of 16-25 or beyond is going to be able to afford that, that is frustrating to me.
“Hopefully there is some night or two nights a week when you can get something like a sale rack, you have to be prepared to rummage a little bit.
“It is important that it doesn’t remain an elitist art form.”
The Crown and The Wire star Dominic West is also among actors who have hit out at West End theatre prices, saying that they are “crazy” at the moment.
He told The Times in November that he wanted to be in Arthur Miller’s A View from the Bridge at the Ustinov Studio in Bath – which plays from February 16 to March 16 – due to regional audiences having “hunger for a good play and for a good night at the theatre”.
West also said: “You get a lot of tourists in London and people are not necessarily there because they want to be there … it is because it is part of the tourist trail.”
Several websites offer cheap theatre tickets for London shows for around £10 or £20 but some productions, such as Plaza Suite starring husband and wife actors Matthew Broderick and Sarah Jessica Parker as a couple, have prices between £125 and £200.
In October 2020, Scott won the best actor Olivier Award for his role in Present Laughter, a modern reflection on fame, desire and loneliness. He also won the 2005 gong for outstanding achievement in an affiliate theatre for A Girl In A Car With A Man, which focuses on a narcissistic male character.
Scott recently starred in All Of Us Strangers about an adult dealing with the grief of losing both his parents along with Paul Mescal.
The fantasy drama has been nominated for a total of six Baftas, which also includes best director for Looking series writer Andrew Haigh and outstanding British film.