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Best West End Shows in London for Kids

 
 
 

Mary Poppins

© Johan Persson

Whether it's an all-singing, all-dancing musical or a big budget theatre production, children of all ages will get a thrill out of these first rate shows in London's West End and beyond.

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Wicked

A rewarding big-budget show that'll leave children utterly spellbound.

Apollo Victoria Theatre, 17 Wilton Road, Victoria, London, SW1V 1LG

Tube: Victoria Station

 

Dates: 7th September 2006 to 28th November 2020 - Various Times

 

Prepare to see Glinda the Good Witch and the Wicked Witch of the West in a whole new light after going to see Wicked, currently showing at the Apollo Victoria Theatre. 'The Untold Story of the Witches of Oz' has gripped the hearts of over 53 million people across the world, breaking box office records and winning more than 100 international awards. Introducing us to some very familiar characters years before they met Dorothy, the classic musical shows how Elphaba (The Wicked Witch) starts off as a clever, lively lady with green skin, while Glinda is superficial, beautiful and popular. The two, thrown together as roommates at university, become unlikely friends. But it's Elphaba who is chosen by the Wizard for special tutoring - expect goose bumps as she concludes the first half with the musical's most memorable number, Defying Gravity. During the second half our green heroine gradually becomes disillusioned as the Wizard's fascist regime is unveiled. This is a rewarding big-budget show that left us utterly spellbound.

 
 
 

Mary Poppins

Step in Time and make your way to this Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious show.

Prince Edward Theatre, 28 Old Compton Street, London, W1D 4HS

Tube: Leicester Square Station , Tottenham Court Road Station, Covent Garden Station, Piccadilly Circus Station

 

Dates: 23rd October - 29th March 2020

 

Zizi Strallen gives an "exquisitely pert, poised, central performance" (Evening Standard) as the practically perfect Mary Poppins in Cameron Mackintosh's musical production which returns to its original West End home at the Prince Edward Theatre. The actress first caught the director's attention in Matthew Bourne's The Car Man. No stranger to Mary Poppins, Zizi took the title role in a touring version of the show in 2015. Opposite Strallen is Charlie Stemp as Bert, who became an overnight star almost straight from drama school in Half a Sixpence, playing opposite Bette Midler in Hello, Dolly on Broadway. Petula Clark, starring as the Bird Woman is "a bonus" (The Guardian) and Joseph Millson as George Banks make a strong cast. So come on everybody, Step in Time and make your way to this Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious show.

 
 
 

Matilda The Musical

Award-winning musical by Tim Minchin puts its child stars at the heart of the show.

Cambridge Theatre, Earlham Street, Seven Dials, Soho, London, WC2H 9HU

Tube: Covent Garden Station , Leicester Square Station, Tottenham Court Road Station

 

Dates: 18th October - 24th May 2020

 

The Royal Shakespeare Company's multiple award-winning musical adaptation of Roald Dahl's celebrated children's book Matilda is a big hit at the Cambridge Theatre in London's West End. Directed by Matthew Warchus and adapted by seasoned playwright Dennis Kelly and the award-winning Australian musical comedian Tim Minchin, Matilda puts its child stars at the heart of the show. Described by WhatsOnStage as "a piece which is by turns riotously funny and gut-wrenchingly poignant", the much praised production - which tells the story of a special little girl with an extraordinary imagination - lives up to expectations and thrills and delights both adults and children alike. Book tickets now to see Matilda The Musical at the Cambridge Theatre London. Back when it first opened in London in 2011 Telegraph theatre critic Charles Spencer gave Matilda five stars, claiming it was "the best British musical since Billy Elliot that will surely be the toast of the West End. I predict that this show will be unstoppable."

 
 
 

School of Rock

Kids will love this tale of rebellion which turns straight laced pupils into rock stars.

Gillian Lynne Theatre, 166 Drury Lane, London, WC2B 5PW

Tube: Holborn Station , Covent Garden Station

 

Dates: 24th October - 01st March 2020

 

Students at a prestigious prep school "stick it to the man" with encouragement from their substitute teacher - wannabe rock star Dewey Finn - in the feel good musical based on the smash hit 2003 film. "The kids are genuinely talented" says Michael Billington in The Guardian in this Olivier Award winning musical adaptation of School of Rock - Andrew Lloyd Webber's "most exuberant show in years". With lyrics by Glenn Slater and a book by Julian Fellowes, the story unfolds as Finn manages to make a rocking band out of his class of straight-A students but the big question is: can he get them to the Battle of the Bands without their parents and the school's headmistress finding out?

 
 
 

The Lion King

With stunning costumes and puppetry, the adventures of Simba are beautifully staged.

The Lyceum Theatre, 21 Wellington Street, Covent Garden, London, WC2E 7RQ

Tube: Covent Garden Station , Temple Station

 

Dates: 24th September - 30th May 2020

 

Ideal for children aged six and over, The Lion King tells the story of Simba - the epic adventure of his battles, his friendships, his dreams and his journey from wide-eyed cub to his destined role as King of the African Pridelands. It's the costumes and puppetry at the Lyceum Theatre that have made this one of the most successful musicals of all time as a whole menagerie of wild beasts are created from masks, stilts and superb dancing. Memorable moments from the film such as Mufasa appearing in the clouds and Timon and Pumbaa singing Hakuna Matata are even more magical on stage while Brown Lindiwe Mkhize's take on mystical baboon Rafiki steals the show with her renditions of He Lives In You and Circle of Life. The ever-changing set and the addition of Zulu chants to Elton John and Tim Rice's catchy songs all add to an extraordinary atmosphere - if you can, get seats in the stalls to ensure you're fully surrounded by the magic. A staple on London's West End, the production is a triumphant, genre-defying adaptation and one of the few family plays that is genuinely as much fun for adults as children.

 
 
 

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