Looking for an evening activity with a difference in London after spending the day sightseeing? We recommend heading to the theatre. Ok, watching a West End show is hardly off-the-beaten-path in the British capital – or is it?

There’s more than just musicals and heartfelt performances to see in London. In no particular order of preference, here’s our guide to the best offbeat theatre shows that critics are raving about.


The Arrival

Two brothers, Tom and Samad, reunite for the first time in 30 years in this thought-provoking play by Director Bijan Sheibani. The show explores themes such as family feuds, nature vs nurture, and the need to belong. However, our two main protagonists, both men, struggle to articulate their emotions – far from ideal when time is of the essence.

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

Calling all Potterheads: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is the first J K Rowling theatre production and the 8th instalment in the Harry Potter series. During the show, you’ll watch wizards, good and bad, cast spells and perform otherworldly tricks and stunts. According to one critic (which we wholeheartedly agree with), Harry Potter and the Cursed Child “will raise the benchmark for family entertainment for years to come”.

Tickets are now on sale for the stage show at Palace Theatre. If you still haven’t had your fill of Potter, consider booking a Harry Potter Studio Tour.

Teenage Dick

Teenage Dick is a modern retelling of Shakespeare’s Richard III. The protagonist is a 16-year-old disabled outsider struggling with the political turmoil that high school brings. Hilarious in parts and devastating in others, Teenage Dick, i.e., the reimagined Richard, plots revenge against his bullies, ultimately aiming to become the senior class president. As our protagonist-come-antagonist falls deeper into greed and manipulation, he eventually must decide whether it’s better to be feared or loved.

Amelie

Secret plots, magical pixies and a wacky café all feature in the theatre-adaptation of Amelie, a musical that follows the eccentric lead female from a sheltered childhood to a reclusive but ambitious adult. Dive into the dreamworld of Amelie by booking tickets to a show at The Other Place in South West London. Performances take place most evenings until the 1st of February.

The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe

If you’re a fan of The Chronicles of Narnia, you shouldn’t miss the opportunity to watch the tale played out in the theatre. This enchanting performance will keep your eyes glued to the stage, where you’ll see bedsheets used to create snow and suitcases as train carriages. Simple as the techniques may be, they certainly strike a chord with us.

Matilda: The Musical

Keeping the love of fantasy alive is our last wacky show you shouldn’t miss, Matilda. As you might guess, it’s a retelling of our favourite Roald Dahl classic, complete with a musical score written by the Australian comedian Tim Minchin. You can watch a performance at the Cambridge Theatre until the 20th of December.


For more of London’s coolest experiences, head on over to our small group tours page. You’ll to see the most interesting sides of the city in a friendly, intimate setting.