The Bridewell Theatre, part of the St. Bride Foundation located off Fleet Street, can always be counted upon to offer a taste of that something a little bit unusual. So, this year, as the panic starts to set in surrounding bookings made, or rather not, and you start to realise that so very many things have sold out – why opt for the same old, same old when it comes to choosing holiday entertainment for you and yours? Instead, pick from The Bridewell’s curious seasonal selection. You won’t be disappointed.

1. Aladdin (2nd December to 8th December @ 7.30pm; Saturday matinees @ 1.30pm & 4pm)

Yes, yes, we might have said ‘different’, but this is not just any pantomime; this is City of London-based pantomime. Twisting away from Disney-centric lyrics to include favourites from The Greatest Showman, Hamilton, and Annie to boot, this musical tale of love found on the journey from rags to riches (with a generous helping of genie, of course), might very well keep you laughing (and singing) well into the New Year. Presented by City Academy, the cast is split between a Monday Company and Tuesday Company, each performing on alternate days of the week. Tickets cost £18 and are available here. A whole new world…

2. Last Days: The London Showing (10th December @ 7.30pm ONLY)

Both devised and directed by Tim Albery, the Young Artists of the National Opera Studio are here conducted by David Cowan for Last Days, a performance which marks the close of the centenary of the end of the WWI. The musical programme on offer follows the path from “the gaiety of pre-war Europe’s nightclubs into an apocalyptic vision of the War’s outbreak”, portrayed via the works of artists such as “Berg, Satie, E E Cummings, Elgar, Butterworth and Gurney” and more. Part of the Imperial War Museum’s First World War Centenary, the evening is supported by members of the orchestra of Opera North. Tickets cost £22 (£16 concessions) and are available here.

3. Edith in the Dark (21st and 22nd December @ 7.30pm)

Phillip Meeks’ play is here directed by Adam Morley and performed by the Baroque Theatre Company. We promised you a little something different – and here indeed it is. Focussing on the darker side of Christmas, if you will, this is a “supernatural journey into the disturbing, dark and supernatural imaginings of celebrated children’s author Edith Nesbit”. You might have heard of her… The Railway Children? Five Children and It? Thought so.
Set in Nesbit’s attic writing room with only an unknown guest and her own housekeeper for company, as Edith reads aloud one of her early horror stories, it becomes clear that someone within that room is most definitely hiding something sinister; something deadly. The Public Reviews declared it “A delicate balance of tongue-in-cheek and heart-in-mouth”. Certainly, a Christmas drama of ‘haunting’ proportions, tickets cost £14 (concessions £12) and are available here.

Have yourselves a cultural little Christmas, everyone: make it a Bridewell Christmas.