What To Book For Christmas – Before It Sells Out

What To Book For Christmas – Before It Sells Out

Yes, it’s only August. But, with much of the 2020 festive season cancelled due to the pandemic, we reckon this year’s events will sell out earlier than ever. To help you add some fun to your family calendar this December, we’ve pulled together an early selection of the capital’s most popular festive traditions. From carol concerts and ballet to open-air ice-skating and pantos, here are the events to book now.

Christmas at the Royal Albert Hall

The Royal Albert Hall is laying on a vast programme of festive favourites this year. The season will feature essentials from the hall’s Christmas tradition, including the Royal Choral Society and Handel’s Messiah – both staples since 1871 – alongside Christmas carols, The Muppet Christmas Carol, Guy Barker’s Big Band Christmas and a family show called My Christmas Orchestral Adventure. Presented under Covid-19 secure guidelines, the concerts will create a safe and comfortable environment for audiences to celebrate together again.

Kensington Gore, South Kensington, SW7 2AP; various dates throughout December

Visit RoyalAlbertHall.com

Ice Skating at Hampton Court

It’s all about atmosphere at Hampton Court Palace’s ice rink, which will open to the public for its annual run in December. In the gardens of Henry VIII’s historic home, this open-air rink offers visitors the chance to skate in the surrounds of a Tudor palace, with plenty of space for both novices and experts. Available to book during the day and at night, tickets are on sale now.
East Molesey, Surrey, KT8 9AS; 19th November-2nd January
Visit HamptonCourtPalaceIceRink.co.uk

Christmas At The Royal Albert Hall
Christmas At The Royal Albert Hall
Hampton Court Palace
Hampton Court Palace

The Nutcracker at Royal Opera House

Peter Wright’s production of The Nutcracker has been enchanting children and adults alike since its first performance by the Royal Ballet in 1984. Combined with Tchaikovsky’s iconic score and designs by Julia Trevelyan Oman, this magical production opens in December for a reworked version of the festive favourite, which focuses on the journey of Clara and her Nutcracker to the Land of Sweets. Tickets go on sale today – snap them up while you can.

Bow Street, Covent Garden, WC2E 9DD; 23rd November-8th January

Visit ROH.org.uk

The Snowman at Peacock Theatre

Twinkling with festive spirit, The Snowman is back for a record-breaking 23rd year. Based on the book by Raymond Briggs, this performance has transported generations of children and their families into the wintery world of a boy and his magical snowman. With music and lyrics by Howard Blake, including the classic ‘Walking in the Air’, The Snowman is a heart-warming mix of dance, spectacle, storytelling, splendid sets and music performed by a live orchestra. Don’t forget the tissues.
Portugal Street, Holborn, WC2A 2HT; 20th November-2nd January
Visit SadlersWells.com

Christmas At Kew

Festive Lights at Kew Gardens

Returning for a ninth year, Kew’s winter trail is set to return with old favourites and new light installations. Visitors can expect bursts of colour and enchanting optics as they explore Kew’s Unesco World Heritage landscape after dark. Visitors can wander through a tunnel covered with a canopy of glowing, colour-changing stars. Further along the trail, a returning favourite – the Cathedral of Light – will twinkle with thousands of fairy lights for that all-important Instagram moment. Expect street food and a visit to Father Christmas too.

Richmond, TW9 3AE; from 17th November-9th January

Visit Kew.org

Panto at The Palladium

This Christmas, the home of pantomime will welcome back some stage favourites for its annual run of shows. Celebrating the very best of panto, with comedy and big show-stopping numbers in abundance, this star-filled extravaganza is always a festive treat. Details are being kept under wraps for now, but theatregoers can sign up on the website to be the first to hear about who’ll be in it and when tickets go on sale for one of the capital’s best-loved Christmas traditions.
8 Argyll Street, Soho, W1F 7TF; dates TBC
Visit PalladiumPantomime.com

Hogwarts in the Snow at Warner Bros. Studio Tour London

The annual Hogwarts in the Snow feature is set to return to Warner Bros. Studio Tour London this December. This year, the cobbled stones and shop fronts of Diagon Alley will be given a festive makeover, draped in layers of filmmaking snow. Though Diagon Alley was not seen in the snow in the films, the same set was used for parts of Hogsmeade during the wintery scenes that see Harry make use of his invisibility cloak to join a school trip without permission. A fan favourite, the Hogwarts castle model will also be transformed with a dusting of the white stuff.
Leavesden, Watford, WD25 7LR; 13th November-16th January

Visit WBStudioTour.co.uk

The Nutcracker
The Nutcracker
The Muppet Christmas Carol
The Muppet Christmas Carol

Matthew Bourne’s Nutcracker! at Sadler’s Wells

Matthew Bourne’s Christmas extravaganza this year is Nutcracker! With plenty of the master choreographer’s trademark wit, pathos and magical fantasy, Nutcracker! follows Clara’s bittersweet journey from a darkly comic Christmas Eve at Dr Dross’s Orphanage, through an ice-skating winter wonderland to the candy kingdom of Sweetieland. Tchaikovsky’s famous score and Anthony Ward’s sets and costumes will combine with Bourne’s choreography to create a fresh and irreverent interpretation of a traditional Christmas favourite, influenced by the lavish Hollywood musicals of the 1930s.

Rosebery Avenue, Islington, EC1R 4TN; 7th December-30th January 

Visit SadlersWells.com

A Christmas Carol at Old Vic 

Now in its fifth year, Jack Thorne’s A Christmas Carol will return to The Old Vic from November. After transforming into a digital affair last year – streamed live and presented as a full-scale show  – this year it’s back where it belongs, in person. While last year’s performances starred Andrew Lincoln as Ebenezer Scrooge, the casting for 2021 currently remains a secret.
The Cut, Waterloo, SE1 8NB; 13th November-8th January
Visit OldVicTheatre.com

Fashion. Beauty. Culture. Life. Home
Delivered to your inbox, daily