Top 10 children's theatre shows this half-term

Our critics' guide to the best shows to take this kids to this school holiday

Not sure what to do with the kids this half-term? Never fear, as we round up all the best children's theatre in London this May half-term, from puppet shows to kid-friendly musicals.

8
Puppet Theatre Barge
1/8

Fowl Play

The Puppet Theatre Barge is now moored up in Little Venice and so should be a total summery treat to take the kids down to over half-term. Catch this show, one of their old reliables, a puppet show farmyard adventure about the birth of a new foal. Ages 3-plus.

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Puppet Theatre Barge Until Sunday July 12 2015
7
2/8

The Cosmic Dancer

West London's children's theatre Polka stage this dance-theatre piece over half-term. It combines ballet and digital projection and the romantic piano music of Claude Debussy in the tale of Pepita the aspiring cosmic dancer. Performed by La Baracca. Ages 4-8.

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Polka Theatre 31 May 2015
6
3/8

Captain Flinn and the Pirate Dinosaurs

Critics' choice

This brilliantly fun puppet-theatre show is about facing your fears and embracing your imaginations. Les Petits adapt Giles Andreae and Russell Ayto's kids' book, where Flinn and his friends collide with some dodgy looking pirates. Ages 4-plus.

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Queen Elizabeth Hall 28 May 2015
5
Ellie Kuttz
4/8

The Paper Dolls

Excellent north London puppet theatre The Little Angel teams up with Polka Theatre for this adaptation of 'The Gruffalo' author Julia Donaldson's book on over half-term. It's a charming-sounding domestic adventure in which a little girl's imagination runs wild. Ages 3-7.

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4
Manuel Harlan
5/8

Henry the Fifth

This show returns to the Unicorn after having a successful premiere in 2013. 'Henry V' is a fairly tricky play to adapt for kids, but Belgian playwright Ignace Cornelissen's version really works. Ellen McDougall's staging is also a fun delight that gets gloriously messy. Ages 8-plus.

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Unicorn Theatre 31 May 2015
3
6/8

Adventures in Wonderland

This companion show to the immersive, atmospheric 'Alice's Adventures Underground' in the Vaults at Waterloo is for children aged five and up. There are a warren of rooms to explore underground, and, going by the success of the adult version, lots of weird and wonderful goings-on to discover.

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The Vaults Until Sunday August 30 2015
2
7/8

Against Captain’s Orders: A Journey into the Uncharted

Critics' choice

Immersive theatre pioneers Punchdrunk broaden their audience with their show for kids staged at the National Maritime Museum. The show takes young'uns and their adults on a swashbuckling adventure, where the old-school spirit of derring-do reigns supreme. Ages 6-12.

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National Maritime Museum Until Monday August 31 2015
1
8/8

Bugsy Malone

Half-term will be the perfect chance to catch the return of Alan Parker's superb kids' musical at the newly re-opened Lyric Hammersmith. 'Bugsy' may have an entire cast of kids, but don't let that fool you into thinking the production is anything other than top notch. With great songs, gags and a lot of splurging, this should be a delight for the entire clan. Ages 6-plus.

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Lyric Hammersmith Until Saturday September 5 2015

Looking for more May half-term ideas?

Half-term in London

Summer looks to be on its way so the kids needn't be stuck in front of the telly all week. This May half-term (May Mon 25-Fri May 29 2015), London has enough fun lined up to have the family raring to leave the house.

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