What’s On In London Theatre: 20-26 November

Our top tips for the best opera, dance and theatre shows opening in London this week.

THEATRE
The National Theatre’s Christmas comedy opens tomorrow: The Magistrate stars US actor John Lithgow, plus award-winning actress Nancy Carroll in a Victorian farce packed with little white lies that lead to trouble, carousing and concealment. Also opening tomorrow is A Clockwork Orange at the Soho Theatre; and The Coming Storm at BAC.

On Monday, The Changeling returns to the Young Vic. Written by Thomas Middleton and William Rowley, The Changeling is a gripping, darkly comic tale of how love can drive you mad; it’s arguably one of the most powerful tragedies ever written.

OPERA
Calixto Bieito’s hugely popular production of Carmen returns to the London Coliseum for a limited run from tomorrow. This modern reinterpretation rejects the opera’s traditional touristic trappings, and instead presents the story as a full-on battle of the sexes. Look out for Romanian mezzo-soprano Ruxandra Donose making her ENO debut as the gypsy temptress; she’s joined by tenor Adam Diegel as Don José, a role he has sung to acclaim many times in the USA.

DANCE
Two dance shows have caught our eye this week: choose from the sounds of Spain at Sadler’s Wells as the legendary guitarist, composer, dramatist and producer Paco Peña presents his 2010 work Quimeras, directed by Southbank Centre artistic director Jude Kelly. (See a teaser clip below.) Or see C-12 Dance Theatre presenting the very first Emerge: three new dance theatre works at The Space. The pieces are choreographed by up-and-coming choreographers Miranda Mac Letten and James Williams, plus special guest choreography by Annie-Lunette Deakin-Foster.

CHILDREN’S SHOWS
Pick from puppets in The Tear Thief at the Unicorn Theatre from tomorrow; a stage adaptation of Julia Donaldson’s Room On The Broom at the Lyric also from tomorrow; a Robin Hood-inspired pantomime at the Greenwich Theatre from Thursday; a song-and-dance-packed Wind In The Willows at the Polka Theatre from Friday; or Unleashed, celebrating the inspirational talent of Boy Blue Entertainment’s Da Bratz and Bluez, and the Barbican’s Young Poets, film-makers and musicians at the Barbican on Friday and Saturday.

LAST CHANCE
There are a few successful and critically acclaimed shows leaving London this week. Saturday is your last chance to see NSFW at the Royal Court; Swan Lake at the Royal Opera House; 55 Days at Hampstead Theatre; Red Velvet at the Tricycle; and Blackta at the Young Vic.

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