Nation, Mark Ravenhill's Pratchett adaptation opens at the National Theatre tonight
Be There First: London Shows Opening
Grab some kids, put on your best Christmas jumper and take your pick from London's early Pantos: A Christmas Carol at the Arts Theatre opening tomorrow (starring Gareth Hale) or Jack and the Beanstalk at the Lyric Hammersmith from Monday. There'll be more next week.
Festive flavours come in other forms too: check out the Royal Ballet's The Nutcracker at the Royal Opera House from Thursday, and Messiah is being staged at the London Coliseum from Friday. Or you can get some seasonal silliness from La Clique at the Roundhouse from tomorrow, or Stephen And The Sexy Partridge at the Trafalgar Studios from Monday. (The director's worked with people like the The Mighty Boosh and Sacha Baron Cohen, so expect the unexpected.)
For the Scrooges out there, some of theatreland remains free from festive frippery this week: A Real Humane Person Who Cares And All That examines our need for savagery at the Arcola Theatre from tonight. Savagery of a different kind comes to the National Theatre in Nation, also opening tonight. And comedy comes to the Royal Court in The Priory from Thursday, starring Jessica Hynes and Rupert Penry-Jones (yum) among other people.
For art and exhibition junkies, tomorrow sees the opening of Damien Hirst's new show Nothing Matters across both White Cube galleries. Identitiy opens at the Wellcome Collection on Thursday, as does Design Real at the Serpentine Gallery - their first ever exhibition of contemporary design. The fab-sounding World Press Photo Exhibition comes to the Royal Festival Hall from Friday (and it's free).
Last Chance To See: London Shows Closing
Sadler's Wells' festival of Indian music and dance, Svapnagata closes on Saturday night.
Opera and dance double-bill Duke Bluebeard's Castle and The Rite of Spring take their final curtains at the London Coliseum on Saturday. Theatrewise, the following shows also close on Saturday: Bedroom Farce / Miss Julie at the Rose Theatre, I Found My Horn at Hampstead Theatre, Icons at Soho Theatre, Life is a Dream at the Donmar Warehouse and double-bill The Tartuffe and The Trial at the Southwark Playhouse.