Feature: 5 Shows To See Over Half Term #5Shows

Posted on 21 October 2013

Here are five West End shows not to be missed this half term! What are your #5Shows?

1. Matilda The Musical

Recommended Age: 6+, children under 5 will not be admitted

I am yet to hear a single person say a bad word about Tim Minchin’s triumphant stage adaptation of Roald Dahl’s Matilda. Not only did Matilda win a record-breaking seven Olivier Awards last year, but the musical recently transferred to Broadway, picking up four Tony Awards.

Four girls currently share the title role. They are joined by a huge cast which features performers of all ages. Not only is the score incredibly catchy, but the show features an impressive design and big choreography, making Matilda quite a spectacle. Those young and old will become swept up in this mesmerising show.

2. Mamma Mia!

Recommended Age: 5+

Mamma Mia is one of those shows which has something for the Mums, Dads, young adults and kids. The diverse range of characters means there is somebody for everyone to relate to.

Despite opening in the West End over fourteen years ago, Mamma Mia continues to break box office records following its transfer to the Novello Theatre. The musical, which features the music of Abba, recently underwent its biggest cast change and currently stars the sensational Dianne Pinkleton as Donna. The film is great fun but nothing beats seeing the fun-filled, hilarious story unfold on stage.

3. Horrible Histories: Barmy Britain - Part 2!

Recommended Age: No age limit. Recommended age 6+

Horrible Histories: Barmy Britain - Part 2 is one hour of silly yet educational fun. With a family friendly performance schedule (shows begin at various times including 10.30, 12.00, 13.00, 14.00, 16.00), Horrible Histories: Barmy Britain - Part 2 can easily be incorporated into a family day out in London.

The Garrick Theatre is hosting the world premiere of this show, following the huge success of Part 1. Can you beat battling Boudicca? Has William Wallace met his match? Can evil Elizabeth entertain England? Will King Charles keep his head? Most importantly this show enables children to learn without even realising - Queen Victoria raps and King Edward enters Take Me Out. What more could you want?!

4. We Will Rock You

Recommended Age: 5+

Not only did many parents grow up listening to the music of Queen, but many children have grown up listening to Queen’s greatest hits albums on repeat in the car. Even those who don’t think they are a big Queen fan will be surprised when they realise how many of the band’s hits they recognise when watching the West End production of We Will Rock You.

The storyline may be loose, and a little pointless, but the production features some of the most talented vocalists in the West End. The Dominion Theatre is always buzzing with an electric atmosphere. Extra half term matinees have been added providing even more opportunities to catch We Will Rock You. The show provides a couple of hours of electrifying escapism.

5. Dirty Dancing

Recommended Age: 12+

Dirty Dancing is the perfect musical for a mother and daughter to see during a girly day out in the capital. Quite simply, if you love the film you will love the stage show as the musical is literally the film on stage, featuring the exact same storyline, characters and soundtrack.

Dirty Dancing is undeniably one of the most iconic movies of all time. The musical recently returned to the West End following a UK Tour which saw many hardcore fans follow the show all over the country. The cast of Dirty Dancing features many incredible dancers and the score includes many hits such as “Hungry Eyes”, “Hey Baby”, “Do You Love Me?” and the breathtaking “I’ve Had The Time Of My Life.” Will they manage to do the lift?!


Andrew Tomlins