What to see in London: February half-term 2017

This February half-term there’s loads of children’s theatre to see all across London, from Limehouse to Lambeth and from London Bridge to Brentford. Here’s our round-up of some of the plays that are on offer, but it’s also worth checking out the other events and activities that are happening at each of the venues – there’s everything from shadow-puppet making sessions to virtual reality experiences.

Ovalhouse Theatre

The Many Doors of Frank Feelbad (for ages 5+) is a tender-hearted play about one man’s quest to find his lost mum. There’s another adventure in Moonshine’s Entirely Necessary Adventure, as a girl of thirteen finds her fairytale forest is becoming a place of fear (for ages 8+).

You can find more information and book tickets here.

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Photograph: Alex Brenner

Watermans

Watermans is throwing a whole bear-tastic extravaganza this half-term. Pins and Needles’ production The Bear (for ages 3-8), based on the book by Raymond Briggs, is a magical adventure about Tilly and the big white bear that climbs into her bedroom. There’s a host of bear-themed activities to accompany the show, and many of them are free!

You can find more information and book tickets here.

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Photograph: Polka Theatre

Greenwich Theatre

Greenwich Theatre are offering five – yes, five! – different shows this half-term holiday. There’s Heaven Eyes, based on David Almond’s book about three runaways from a children’s home and the mysterious girl they meet on their way (for ages 9+), and Wow! Said The Owl (for ages 2-5) which follows a curious little owl as he stays awake to see daytime. Mark Thompson’s Spectacular Science Show (for all ages) uses exploding elephant’s toothpaste, vortex generating dustbins, dancing paste, vanishing beakers and even exploding Pringle tubes to prove that science isn’t really boring. Michael Morpurgo’s King Arthur is brought to life in this play full of battles, betrayal, heroism and magic, for ages 7+. And finally, there’s Don’t Dribble On The Dragon, a musical adventure for ages 2+ featuring magic designed by Paul Daniels

You can find more information and book here.

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Half Moon Theatre

Three is the magic number at Half Moon Theatre, as they are offering three different productions, one of which is called Three! Three features a trio of singing performers weaving together different stories that feature their favourite number (for ages 3-8). You can also catch Duvet Day  – a soft snuggly play based in a blanket fort for ages 0 – 18 months – and Bright Sparks,  a fun and illuminating show for ages 3-7 that uses research into the brain to explore  the importance of difference.

You can find more information and book tickets here.

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Photograph: Andy Catlin

Polka Theatre

Over at Polka Theatre, there’s The Party, an acrobatic spectacle about a much-anticipated birthday celebration and some very unexpected guests (for ages 3-7). How to Hide a Lion (ages 3-6) – a tale of finding a new friend, and the struggle to keep them secret – is on in Polka’s Adventure Theatre.

You can find more information and book tickets here.

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Unicorn Theatre

Unicorn Theatre are catering to all ages this half-term holiday. For the very littlest, there’s the aptly-named Baby Show (for ages 6-18 months), a lush and vibrant production with plenty of opportunity for play (though it’s selling out fast, so if you want a ticket be quick!) Then there’s The Iron Man (for ages 8+), created by Matthew Robins of Something Very Far Away fame, which uses paper-cut silhouette, puppetry and stop-motion animation to tell Ted Hughes’ sci-fi story. Finally, The Hunting Lodge is ‘a modern love story gone wrong’  aimed at teens and tweens (11+).

You can find more information and book tickets here.

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Photograph: Helen Murray

Imagine Children’s Festival at the Southbank Centre

The Southbank Centre’s annual Imagine Children’s Festival is back with another packed programme of theatre, dance, music, installations, readings and workshops. The shows you can catch are Ready Steady GO! for ages 3 – 9, an immersive, interactive theatre show which puts children in the driver’s seat. There’s also an adaptation of Michael Morpurgo’s Why The Whales Came for ages 7+, whilst Neverland invites 1-3 year olds into a beautiful tented space, and uses 360° video projections, music and performance to tell the story of a child’s imagination. Aston’s Stones (for ages 3-6) uses physical theatre and mime to tell the story of a dog who loves looking after the stones he finds, and Hans Christian, You Must Be An Angel (for ages 7+) brings all your fairytale favourites together for a feast to celebrate their creator. We’ve done a full round-up here.

You can find more information and book tickets here.

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Children’s Theatre Reviews exists to help plug the gap in criticism and writing about theatre for young audiences. It is run entirely voluntarily, and needs support to continue covering and supporting the sector. For more information and to help give children’s theatre the voice it deserves, please visit our Patreon page.

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