Cabaret Children's Shows Comedy Dance & Physical Film Music Musicals Theatre ThisWeek In London

Christmassy Tips round up 2021/22

By | Published on Friday 17 December 2021

You may remember that, in the last couple of years – because loads of the shows that we tip in the latter part of the year are still running throughout December and some even into January – we’ve given you a round-up of those productions in our last communication of the year, in case you’re still planning your cultural activities for the festive period.

The majority of these events are definitely what you would call Christmas shows, though others have nothing at all to do with Christmas, and may be of use to those of you entirely uninterested in Christmas things, but still looking for stuff to do over the holiday. And, of course, many also appeal to Christmas lovers seeking a bit of a change from all the usual seasonal fare.

Most of these shows are live and in-person, and we know that lots of events have been forced to cancel as COVID related restrictions start to increase again. To that end, it’s possible not everything we’re talking about here will definitely go ahead – so do check in advance and don’t just turn up.

But keep your fingers crossed and take heart – hopefully the majority of these shows will be able to proceed – plus we also have suggestions of stuff for you to access digitally.

OK, let’s begin with stuff for families, because there are so many great kids shows happening this month. I’m going to start with shows that only have a few dates left so that you can act quickly if necessary.

You’ve got two days until the run of ‘Five Little Christmas Monkeys’ at Park Theatre ends, and a similar situation with both ‘The Wonderful’ at Theatre Peckham and ‘Christmas Is Ruined’ at The Cockpit. ‘The Cat In The Hat’ at The Turbine Theatre, meanwhile, finishes its run on 23 Dec, and Protein Dance’s ‘The Little Prince’ at The Place closes on Christmas Eve.

Then, of course, there are plenty of family shows on until the end of the month or into January, which might be good for alleviating the back-to-school blues. The Chickenshed has three shows suitable for various ages: ‘Christmas Planet Play’ for tiny ones on 21+29 Dec, ‘Christmas Tales At Chickenshed’ for under-sevens until 29 Dec, and ‘Ever After – A Mixed Up Fairytale’ for over-fives until 8 Jan.

The rather popular ‘The Tiger Who Came To Tea’ continues its run at ArtsDepot until 3 Jan, and you can see both ‘The Bolds’ at Unicorn Theatre and ‘The Snow Queen’ at The Albany until 31 Dec.

You’ve got the whole of the Christmas period as well as nearly the whole of January to see ‘Cinderella – The Awesome Truth’ at Polka Theatre and ‘The Storm Whale’ at Little Angel Theatre, while there’s still plenty of time to book at date with ‘There May Be A Castle’, also on at Little Angel Theatre, until 23 Jan. Oh, and there’s another thing at the Polka Theatre, ‘The Night Before Christmas’, until 16 Jan.

And naturally, in addition to all those family shows, there are the pantomimes, which you are of course allowed to go see as a grown adult, but are generally speaking very much for the kids too.

Some are ending before Christmas – I’m thinking about ‘Dick Whittington’ at Chelsea Theatre and ‘Sleeping Beauty’ at Hoxton Hall which both close on 24 Dec, and horror panto (not for little ones) ‘It’s Behind You’ at Old Red Lion Theatre, which has a couple more performances you can catch.

There are plenty running on into January of course: ‘Potted Panto’ at Garrick Theatre, ‘Cinderella’ at Richmond Theatre, ‘Dick Whittington And His Cat’ at Watford Palace Theatre, ‘Jack And The Beanstalk’ at Hackney Empire, ‘Sleeping Beauty’ at Churchill Theatre, ‘The Queen Of Hearts’ at Greenwich Theatre, and ‘Beowulf: An Epic Panto’ at King’s Head Theatre.

You’ll need to be a bit quicker to take in these last three: ‘Snow White’ at Theatre503 is on until 30 Dec, while ‘Red Riding Hood’ at Theatre Royal Stratford East ends the following day. ‘Sleeping Beauty And The Beast’ from Sleeping Trees (pictured) at Battersea Arts Centre is another show that closes on 30 Dec.

Speaking of Sleeping Trees: as well as appearing at Battersea Arts Centre, they have a couple of fab shows available online for your comfy, at home, digital consumption: you can see ‘Puss In Moonboots’ and ‘ The Legend of Moby Dick Whittington’ until 15 Jan. And there is, of course, other stuff from other creators for you to take in via the miraculous internet. There’s the interactive ‘Sherlock In Homes 3: Murder At The Games’ via Bristol Old Vic until 8 Jan, and ‘Into Battle’ via until 31 Jan.

Right, what’s next? Would you like a few musical things to consider? Finishing their runs on 23 Dec are ‘Elf The Musical’ at Brookside Theatre, and ‘Wicked Tale’ at Canal Cafe Theatre, while hanging on until nearly the end of the month is ‘The Tiger Lillies’ Christmas Carol’ at Southbank Centre. If you need a bit more time, ‘Beauty And The Beast’ at Rose Theatre and ‘Gatsby’ at Southwark Playhouse are on until 3 Jan and 8 Jan respectively.

Now for some funny stuff. Elf Lyons ‘Talks Dirty For An Hour’ at Soho Theatre until 23 Dec, and Mark Thomas performs ‘An Extra Plate’ at Battersea Arts Centre until the same date. Sh*tfaced Showtime’s ‘A Pissedmas Carol’ continues on into January at Leicester Square Theatre, as does Natalie Palamides’ ‘Laid’ at Soho Theatre. ‘Police Cops’ at New Diorama ends before Christmas though, so make sure you get on to that quickly if you want to go.

Now if what you are craving over Christmas is some theatre, that’s where we are headed next. Some of it’s a bit Christmassy but some of it isn’t, which might be pleasing for some of you.

In the definitely festive bracket there’s the dark yet Christmassy ‘A Christmas Carol – A Ghost Story’ at Alexandra Palace Theatre, on until 9 Jan, and related re-imagining ‘Cratchit’ at the Park Theatre until 8 Jan, and another seasonal ghost story ‘The Child In The Snow’ at Wilton’s Music Hall until 31 Dec.

In not specifically festive fare, there’s ‘Kindred Spirits’ at Jack Studio Theatre until 8 Jan, ‘Fair Play’ at Bush Theatre until 22 Jan, ‘The Wife Of Willesden’ at Kiln Theatre until 24 Dec, and ‘While The Sun Shines’ at Orange Tree Theatre until 8 Jan.

Finally, three things that didn’t really fit into the other categories. We don’t often tip film stuff, but we did recommend The Luna Winter Cinema at Battersea Arts Centre, which continues showing Christmas favourites until 23 Dec. Matthew Bourne’s ‘Nutcracker’ at Sadler’s Wells, on until nearly the end of Jan, is of course dance, though good for a family outing, I think. And another family outing candidate is ‘Lightopia’ at Crystal Palace Park until 2 Jan.

And that’s your lot – have a very merry Christmas!

READ MORE ABOUT: | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | |