What's On In The West End: The Best Shows For Kids
| By Emily Jenkins
It's often hard to decide whether a show is appropriate to take your child to - theatre is an amazing experience, but is this particular show too sad, too loud or just not appropriate? To help you out, here are 3 shows currently on in London, which would be perfect for kids!
Adapted from the classic 1994 Disney film, this show has been taking London by storm since it first arrived at the Lyceum Theatre in 1999. With bright colours, catchy songs and beautiful set and props, this is the perfect show for children seeing their first musical! It’s one of a select few London musicals which is mainly aimed at a very young audience, so you can tell how hard the production team have worked to make the show engaging and entertaining for children and adults alike (we don’t want the mums and dads falling asleep now do we?)
This much loved children's novel was developed into a musical by Tim Minchin with Dennis Kelly and the RSC in late 2010, and had its West End debut at the Cambridge Theatre in November 2011. This is a great show to take kids to see, because it's a story they'll know, with songs they'll be singing along to for the rest of the holidays! Like The Lion King, Matilda has a very visual set, including a huge arrangement of letter blocks above the stage! Seeing other kids onstage is also something which will undoubtedly make your children want to be 'up there doing that', so who knows - maybe this could be the show which gets your child interested in performing!
Wicked is a slightly different show to the previous two I've mentioned, in that it isn't actually aimed and marketed at children. Despite the fact that it has some darker underlying themes, and some more sad scenes, it's a bright, loud and exciting show, telling the story of what happened prior to the story of The Wizard of Oz. Being based on such a classic film makes it easy for kids to follow the narrative, and adds an element of fun when, towards the end, we realise who becomes the Tin Man and the Scarecrow!
For even more ideas, you can check out London Theatre Direct's Children's Theatre and Family Friendly Theatre pages.