Image Credit: Kilyan Sockalingum
Do you want to go to the theatre in London’s iconic West End, with your kids, but don’t know which shows are suitable for them to see?
Fear not, for here is our guide to what’s on in the West End right now that is suitable for families with children. These musicals and plays are the ones that all the family will enjoy. From Disney spectaculars to rip-roaring comedies, here is the best of the West End for all the family.
A couple of things that you will need to note: Most West End theatre shows will not allow children under 5 years old into the performances, and as a general rule children under 16 must be accompanied by an adult who must sit next to them in the auditorium. I recommend that you check the theatre’s admission policy before booking.
Let’s dim the lights, switch our mobiles to silent and get on with the show….
Fans of the books of Little Britain star and best-selling children’s author David Walliams will love this first opportunity to Awful Auntie live on stage.
Set in 1933 the story follows Stella Saxby, sole heiress to Saxby Hall. One fateful day, Stella is on her way to London with her parents when a tragic accident occurs. She wakes up three months later to find that only her Aunt Alberta knows what happened. Can Stella foil Aunt Alberta’s awful plans to steal her inheritance or will she lose everything she owns?
Awful Auntie is on at the Bloomsbury Theatre and is running over the Christmas period until 6th January 2019.
The Snowman has been performed every Christmas at the Peacock Theatre since 1997 and has become something of a London Christmas institution. Based on Raymond Briggs iconic book it tells the tale of a boy and the magical night he spends when he is transported around the world with the snowman that he built, which comes to life one snowy Christmas night.
A truly magical experience for children of all ages, you will come out of the theatre “Walking in the Air”!
Disney fans will be clamouring to see Aladdin, based on the hilarious 1992 movie which starred the incomparable Robin Williams as the voice of the Genie. Already running since 2016 it has been massively popular and is still playing to packed houses.
It is bursting with original songs and music from the movie including “A Whole New World” and “Friend Like Me” as well as new music written especially for the stage version.
Fans of Roald Dahl will have Matilda at the top of their must-see list. Tim Minchin’s inspired musical version of the story of the girl who loves books has been described as a musical masterpiece. Created by the Royal Shakespeare Company it is a show that that revels in the anarchy of childhood, the power of imagination and the inspiring story of a girl who dares to change her destiny.
Matilda has played to packed houses and been given standing ovations since it opened, and has multiple awards around the world.
The Lion King has been running in the West End for nearly 20 years and is still massively popular with audiences. The show is not just a musical telling the story of Simba the lion cub; it is an experience which uses the whole of the theatre with music, dance, puppets and uniquely inventive props.
Of course it includes all the songs that your kids will know and love from the film, including I Just Can't Wait to Be King and The Circle of Life and includes comedy, tragedy and is everything that great theatre should be.
One the new kids on the block, School of Rock is based on the 2003 film which starred Jack Black.
With a rocking new score from Andrew Lloyd Webber, School of Rock follows slacker Dewey Finn as he turns a class of straight - A students into an ear-popping, riff-scorching, all-conquering rock band! Dewey prepares this bunch of uptight private school students for the Battle of the Bands, but can he make them embrace the empowering message of rock?
The show has an amazingly talented cast of kids who actually play the instruments on stage, so your little ones will love seeing kids just like them – and maybe they will be inspire to pick up a guitar too!
Wicked has almost now become a classic musical. Written as a prequel to The Wizard of Oz it tells the story of how Glinda The Good and Elpheba, the Wicked Witch of the West first met.
Already one of the longest running shows in London theatre history, this spectacular show includes the hit song “Defying Gravity” and has won over 100 theatre awards.
You can’t beat a bit of classic slapstick comedy, and The Play That Goes Wrong will have you breathless with laughter from start to finish
The Cornley Polytechnic Drama Society are putting on a 1920s murder mystery, but everything that can go wrong... does! Will the accident-prone actors battle against all odds to make it through to their final curtain call? You’ll have to find out!
Thriller Live is a spectacular concert show with music, dance and a stunning light show featuring the songs of the iconic Michael Jackson, all performed live on stage.
A loving tribute to the King of Pop it includes non-stop hits from the whole of Jackson’s career from his early hits “ABC” and “Can You Feel It” to tracks from the “Thriller” album and beyond.
If you have seen the 2008 film or its recent sequel, you will know that Mamma Mia, with its string of ABBA hits is another of the West End’s most popular and long-running musicals. You probably know the plot; Sophie is about to get married, and wants to discover the father she’s never known. To find the answer she brings her mother face to face with three men from her distant romantic past on the eve of a wedding they’ll never forget!
With more ABBA songs than you can shake a stick at, this is an evening of fun and magical 70’s music that will leave everyone with a smile on their face and a tear in their eye.
About eParenting: eParenting was started by Jacqui O'Brien in 2004. At the time her kids were 1 and 4 and kept her nice and busy. Now they are teenagers and still keeping her pretty busy!