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Kids' theatre in London

Get the kids hooked on culture with these great London shows for young ones

Too big for puppets but too small to refrain from squirming for two full acts? Try one of these energetic theatre shows for kids. The productions on this list are best for ages five and up. If you're thinking smaller read about shows for younger children instead, or if they're getting on a bit try our family theatre shows page.

Shows for kids

I Believe in Unicorns

Doesn't everyone? Michael Morpurgo's magical book for kids is adapted by Wizard Presents and returns to the West End this summer. It's a one-woman show starring Danyah Miller, set in a library and about Tomas who one day meets the Unicorn and Unicorn Lady in his local library. As our book lending venues keep closing, this might be the perfect time to inspire the little 'uns to pick a good book and be transported away. Ages 6-plus.

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Vaudeville Theatre Saturday August 1 2015 - Sunday August 30 2015

The Adventures of Pinocchio

A new musical based on the classic children's story by Carlo Collodi about a wooden puppet who yearns to be a real boy. This piece from Neil Bartram and Brian Hill features puppets and live musicians in its UK premiere. Ages 5-plus.

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Greenwich Theatre Wednesday August 5 2015 - Sunday August 23 2015

Gorilla

Anthony Browne's enduring children's classic is adapted for the stage by Rachel Barnett. One night, Hannah goes on an adventure when her toy gorilla comes to life. Puppetry and music brings Brown's picture book, which is celebrating its 30th birthday this year, to life. Ages 1-5.

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Polka Theatre Until Sunday August 16 2015

Horrible Histories: Barmy Britain Part Three

The third part of the stage adaptations of Terry Deary's wacky, off-beat educational history books for teens arrives in 2015. The stage productions have been appearing now for 10 years and this new instalment has Neal Foster and Anthony Spargo flirting with big events in British history such as the signing of the Magna Carta and more. Ages 6-plus.

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Garrick Theatre Until Saturday September 5 2015

Kids Week

This annual event promoting West End theatre for children returns – though don't be confused by the title - it's running for a whole month (August 1-31). Part of the month sees participating shows offer one child (aged 16 and under) per adult to see the performance for free, and up to two extra children can go for half price with no booking fees. The shows you can see include 'The Dinosaur Zoo', 'The Gruffalo', 'Charlie and the Chocolate Factory', 'The Lion King' and er, 'The Moustrap'. Various theatres will also be organising free activities and events on stage and backstage, including puppet-making classes, storytelling, young writers workshops and more. Tickets go on sale at 10am on June 16.

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Various West End venues Saturday August 1 2015 - Monday August 31 2015

Hetty Feather

 In the first few moments of this play, protagonist Hetty Feather acrobatically flips over on to an aerial hoop to dangle mid-air. It’s a spellbinding start to a magical show for kids.Adapted from Jacqueline Wilson’s bestselling novel, the story follows Hetty (Phoebe Thomas) from being abandoned as an infant in Victorian England to her reunion with her birth mother.

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Duke of York’s Theatre Thursday August 6 2015 - Sunday September 6 2015

Aliens Love Underpants

 Forget crop-circles and abductions – according to ‘Aliens Love Underpants’, extraterrestrials travel to us from lightyears away solely to steal our precious undergarments. Adam Bampton-Smith’s adaptation of Claire Freedman’s bestselling children’s book tells the story of Timmy, a whimsical boy, whose dreams of becoming a spaceman come true when he journeys to Planet Janet.

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Dominion Theatre Saturday August 1 2015 - Saturday September 5 2015

Against Captain’s Orders: A Journey into the Uncharted

Critics' choice

Avast! Those of you still trying to work out what the bejesus was going on in Punchdrunk’s cryptic odyssey ‘The Drowned Man’ will be relieved to discover that the latest show from the immersive theatre gurus ventures into calmer waters.There’s a catch, though: ‘Against Captain’s Orders’ is in fact the work of Punchdrunk Enrichment, the company’s learning-centric spin-off, and is running not in a hip abandoned warehouse but the basement of the Greenwich Maritime Museum.

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National Maritime Museum Until Monday August 31 2015

The Three Little Pigs

Here's a new family musical with some pop star names to delight the clan. Gareth Gates (remember him?) stars alongside Simon Webbe of Blue and West End musical actors Leanne Jones and Alison Jiear in this show by George Stiles and Anthony Drewe about those three pigs from the fairy tale. In an updating of the huff, puff story, here it's three porkers who become celebrities and have to outwit the big bad wolf. Ages 3-plus.

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Palace Theatre Wednesday August 5 2015 - Sunday September 6 2015
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