Christmas is the time to treat yourself and your loved ones, and nothing feels more indulgent than a trip to the opera or the ballet. Maybe you’ve seen scores of ballets or none at all; maybe you’re a regular at the opera or uncertainly dipping your toe in. Whatever the case and whatever your taste, there’s lots on offer in London this Christmas.
From classic spectacles of timeless beauty to modern stories and retellings, even the most inexperienced operagoer or ballet watcher will be swept up in the magic this festive season. The West End is entering fairy land this Christmas, and there’s plenty of ways to follow. Here are some of our top recommendations if you’re looking for opera and ballet this Christmas.
Ten years since its premiere, Matthew Bourne’s Sleeping Beauty reawakens this Christmas for a triumphant return to the stage. As magical forces work against her and the way above becomes harder to find, Aurora must find her way back to her true love. With a beloved score by Tchaikovsky and choreography performed with all the characteristic skill and grace of the New Adventures company, this spell-binding ballet is going to be unforgettable.
This beloved Christmas ballet comes to the London Coliseum this December for a short but unforgettable season. Experience Tchaikovsky’s exquisite score, brough to life by a company of over 100 talented dancers and musicians. In Edwardian London, Clara is led into a magical world by her enchanted nutcracker doll, and the two of them experience the adventure of a lifetime. The English National Ballet promise to deliver a Christmas treat to treasure forever.
If the film moved you, then Jake Heggie and Gene Scheer’s operatic adaptation of the Christmas favourite will remain with you long after you leave the London Coliseum. When down-on-his-luck banker George Bailey sinks to his lowest, his guardian angel is obliged to step in and show him what life would be like without him in it. With only eight performances scheduled, this run will be short but sweet – make sure you don’t miss out.
Charles Court Opera bring you a show for the entire family this Christmas, with this Brothers Grimm tale turned upside down. Rumpelstiltskin brings you a show full of mischief, madness and some very whacky antics, whilst exploring the timeless theme of identity. Get ready to follow Rumpelstiltskin into an unforgettable adventure.
Call this one a post-Christmas treat. If you’re not quite ready to let the festive season go come January, then you’d better head back to the London Coliseum, where the English National Ballet will be performing Tchaikovsky’s beloved classic in all its magical, wintery glory. Marvel at the transformation of the Coliseum stage into an enchanted lakeside and be gripped by the romance of Prince Siegfriend and Odette, as they battle against evil sorcerer Rothbart. Prepare for an evening of pure beauty.