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Alternative Christmas shows in London

Festive culture without the clichés: take your pick of the capital's best alternative Christmas theatre


Going to the theatre this winter doesn't have to mean nutcrackers and camp men dressed as Marie Antoinette. There are plenty of alternative shows that will help to quell the Christmas overload.

This page will be updated as more events are confirmed.

RECOMMENDED: Find more Christmas shows in London 

As You Like It

Critics' choice

The great Rosalie Craig - who lead the National's 'The Light Princess and the Donmar's recent 'City of Angels' - stars as Rosalind in Polly Findlay's production of Shakespeare's comedy 'As You Like It'. It's a fairly big deal, what with it being the first time there's been a production of the play in over 30 years, plus Findlay is a endlessly safe pair of hands. The play itself tells of Rosalind runs off to the Forest of Arden and disguises herself as a boy and gets caught up in that tricky thing called love. Dates, times and prices TBC.  

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National Theatre , South Bank Until Saturday March 5 2016

Funny Girl

Following her string of excellent TV appearances in the likes of 'Cilla' and 'The C World', Sheridan Smith returns to the stage, and to musicals with this production of the 1966 show 'Funny Girl'. Smith's lungs of steel were proved when she starred in the likes of 'Legally Blonde' and 'Little Shop of Horrors' and her high profile turn in 'A Midsummer Night's Dream' in 2013 with David Walliams was very well received. Smith will star as Fanny Brice in the first stage performance of Bob Merrill, Jule Styne and Isobel Lennart's 'Funny Girl' since its premiere. The show catapulted Barbara Streisand to fame and is directed at the Menier Chocolate Factory by Michael Mayer. Brice was a real-life figure who became one of America's best-loved comedians and actresses in the 30s and 40s. Smith will be singing songs like 'People', 'You Are Woman, I Am Man' and 'Don't Rain on My Parade'.

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Savoy Theatre , Charing Cross Saturday April 9 2016 - Saturday October 8 2016

Les Liaisons Dangereuses

Critics' choice

A particularly juicy revival of Christopher Hampton's saucy sexually charged 'Les Liaisons Dangereuses' based on Choderlos de Laclos' novel about 18th century France where Marquise de Merteuil and Vicomte de Valmont  play games of seduction and revenge. His play was made into a successful film in 1988 starring Glen Close and John Malkovich and this revival boasts a similarly exciting cast. Dominic West stars as Vicomte de Valmont and Janet McTeer is Marquise de Merteuil, while Michelle Dockery is Madame de Tourvel. Donmar artistic director Josie Rourke continues the theatre's trend of shunning Christmas shows and directs the show over the festive period herself.

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Donmar Warehouse , Covent Garden Until Saturday February 13 2016


Following his foray into opera with 'Dr Dee' at the Manchester International Festival, Damon Albarn, he of 90s indie band Blur, returns to the same festival to collaborate again with Rufus Norris on a musical endeavour. 'wonder.land' is a musical inspired by Lewis Carroll's playful nonsense novel 'Alice in Wonderland'.

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National Theatre , South Bank Tuesday February 9 2016 - Saturday April 30 2016

Christmas shows for the family

Family Christmas shows in London

Make Christmas more magical with a trip to one of London's many family-friendly Christmas shows. There's theatre big and bright enough to keep little ones enthralled and performances sweet and subtle enough to entertain the whole family. Find the one that all of your lot will love and book tickets so you don't miss out. RECOMMENDED: Find more Christmas shows in London 

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By: Daisy Bowie-Sell


Margaret Thatcher Queen of Soho
Margaret Thatcher Queen of Soho

I'm sure you only missed me off to give the other shows a chance. Yes, that's right, I'm back and more fabulous than ever! In a brand new drag musical comedy satirical extravaganza. Ever wondered what might have happened if I, Margaret Thatcher, had got lost in Soho on the eve of the vote for section 28, reversed all my views, and become an overnight cabaret sensation? Then wonder no more! Written and directed by award winning playwright Jon Brittain and co-written by and starring Matt Tedford as the lady herself, Margaret Thatcher Queen of Soho is a hilarious tongue in cheek Christmas show that's running at Theatre503 from 10th December - 4th January. There'll be music, laughter and free school milk for all! Where there are discos, may we bring harmony! Trailer here... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Uq9PPPFkrI Tickets here... http://theatre503.com/whats-on/margaret-thatcher-queen-of-soho/