It may not even be December yet but already the streets are decked out in tinsel and every other advert on the TV is enticing us to start buying presents for the festive season. Christmas can be a stressful time having to cook a turkey for ten and making sure the kids are kept happy, but there are plenty of ways to relax during the Yuletide celebrations, and a great and classic thing to do is to see a Christmas theatre show in London.
Winter is the perfect time to visit the ‘big smoke’ with the numerous shopping streets selling everything from sweaters to mulled wine, and for its historic and infamous Theatreland. The options of shows are boundless, with classic musicals such as Wicked, Billy Elliot and The Phantom of the Opera being permanent fixtures in the city, as well as long-lasting plays like Mousetrap and The Woman In Black. If you are looking to see a show that is directly geared towards Christmas, however, then here are some to check out.
Christmas with the Rat Pack is coming back to London for another season, playing at the Wyndham’s Theatre from 20th December until 7th January. The show transports audiences back to the 1950s and 60s where Frank ‘Ol’ Blue Eyes’ Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jnr and Dean Martin’s smooth vocals lifted any mood and entertained millions throughout the world. The essence of these legends of the music and movie industries is brought to the stage, wowing audiences and getting even the most Scrooge-like person in the mood for Christmas with seasonal greats such as White Christmas, Silent Night and Baby It’s Cold Outside. A favourite with anyone who appreciates these classic songs, Christmas with the Rat Pack is wonderful for those who want to sit back, relax and be carried away by the suave vocals.
For those who are interested in seeing a dance show with beautiful music, then Matthew Bourne’s Nutcracker at Sadler’s Wells is a great choice for the Christmas season. Having been absent from the London stage since its 2003/4 sell-out run, the show is back for a limited period from 6th December until 22nd January. The fresh and reimagined version of the Tchaikovsky classic features Matthew Bourne’s pathos and wit, as well as beautiful costumes and sets from Anthony Ward and brilliant choreography. The show is a traditional favourite during the winter season and is a popular choice.
If you are coming to London to see a show with young children, then The Snowman at the Peacock Theatre is an excellent choice and will have the kids in amazement long after the curtain has closed. The show is usually on the Christmas calendar every year and is a great mixture of dance, stagecraft and music, featuring the haunting ‘Walking In The Air’ performed by a live orchestra. The Snowman is sure to put the whole family in the mood for Christmas and is also a fantastic selection for a first-time theatre performance. It is booking until 8th January 2012.
If none of these shows are whetting your appetite and you fancy yourself as a bit of a Scrooge, then why not see A Christmas Carol at the Arts Theatre? Written by Charles Dickens, the story takes the audience through Scrooge’s past to his future, going through dark, creaking houses, cosy firesides and creepy graveyards. Producer Simon Callow returns to the show to create a funny, heart-breaking and celebratory piece of theatre that is perfect for Christmas. A Christmas Carol will show from 8th December until 14th January.
There is something for everyone this Christmas in London, whether you are coming with the children or taking a quiet weekend break away. London will never disappoint when it comes to theatre, and with its rich history, beautiful historical buildings and wide variety of shows, you are sure to have a memorable trip.
Alice Bzowska is a London-based writer who currently writes for London Theatre Tickets website, Theatre Tickets Cheap.
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