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Top 5 West End Shows for Families

16 June 2023

Going to the theatre gives children an amazing experience that’s hard to replicate. It’s engaging, awe-inspiring, and a chance for the family to come together to share something special. Here are five of the best current West End shows for the family to enjoy together.

The Lion King

There’s a reason this show is in its 21st year. Put simply, The Lion King is a spectacle, with soaring songs and incredible visuals that underpin a strong, engaging story which captivates children and adults of all ages. The performances and production design are equally awe-inspiring. The show recreates the animals and landscapes of Africa in a unique and beautiful way. Currently showing at the Lyceum Theatre, this is a show everyone needs to see at least once. Recommended for age 6+, children under 3 won’t be admitted to the theatre.

The Play That Goes Wrong

For whatever reason, most family shows currently on the West End are based on films and books, with something truly original for the whole family very rare. Thank goodness, then for The Play That Goes Wrong. This show began as a small production (staged upstairs in a pub) and has grown, due to audience engagement and rave reviews, into what it is now. It’s a play-within-a-play, as we watch a fictional troupe of actors getting ready to put on a show when problem after problem befalls them to comical effect. It’s the height of slapstick, with incredible effects and hilarious performances that have the audience in fits of giggles every night. See it at the Duchess Theatre. Recommended for age 8+.


Fast becoming a pillar of both the West End and Broadway, Wicked is a show that has to be seen. It’s based on a book but, unlike many other shows, the story won’t be familiar to most children, so it’s a chance for the family to be taken along on an exciting and captivating journey. The songs range from fun and catchy to grand and epic. Expect the whole family to sing along to the soundtrack for months afterwards. See Wicked at the Apollo Victoria Theatre. Recommended for age 7+, no under 5s admitted.


Based on the classic children’s book by Roald Dahl about a tenacious girl who loves books, Matilda the Musical has been running continuously since 2011. The songs were written by acclaimed comic composer Tim Minchin and it’s won numerous awards and got rave reviews. Adults and children will be captivated throughout and collapsed with laughter at times. It’s playing at the Cambridge Theatre in London’s West End. The show is recommended for children aged 6 and above and it’s important to note that under 4s won’t be allowed in. 

Frozen The Musical

Frozen is enormously popular with children, with its updated take on traditional fairy tales and captivating snowy setting. Now you can see all the magic brought to life on stage, with Princesses Anna and Elsa, loveable snowman Olaf and reindeer Sven. There are even some new songs to enjoy, along with the familiar ones. The venue is the Theatre Royal on Drury Lane and the show is recommended for children aged 6 and over, although it’s important to note that children must be at least 4 to attend this theatre.

Photo by Hannah Smith on Unsplash

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