Production company Badac are renowned for tackling thorny, angry topics, focusing on human rights issues, and endeavouring to communicate with their audiences through intense theatrical experiences.

In December, they bring 'The Flood', their critically acclaimed piece set in WW1, for a short run at the Drayton Arms Theatre. I spoke to writer, performer, and Badac founder, Steve Lambert. And you can read the interview here.

'The Flood' is on at The Drayton Arms Theatre in SW5 from 2-5 Dec. For more information, and to book tickets, see this page on the venue website here.

You may know Jessie Cave from her live performances, or even her recently published book, but most people will recognise her as the actress who played Lavender Brown in some of those films about a famous boy-wizard and how he gets on at school.

I rather think Jessie Cave is much more interesting than Lavender Brown, though, so I think you should forget about that fictional character now, and focus on the real person behind her, who has proven herself to be a highly intelligent, engaging performer with some very interesting stories to tell. I put some questions to her, ahead of her latest Soho Theatre run. And you can read the interview here.

Jessie Cave performs 'I Loved Her' at Soho Theatre from 1-5 Dec. For more info and to book tickets tootle over to this page here.

This month Charles Court Opera brings the latest in a long line of 'boutique' pantomimes - the ninth, in fact - to a new venue, Islington's King's Head Theatre, after eight years at The Rosemary Branch. This year's show, 'Mirror Mirror' is based on Snow White.

To find out more about the show, the company, and the group's panto tradition, I spoke to CCO's founder and artistic director John Savournin. And you can read the interview here.

'Mirror Mirror' is on at King's Head Theatre from 3 Dec-9 Jan. See the venue website here for more info and to book tickets.

In common with quite a few of the acts I interview, Sleeping Trees - aka Joshua George Smith, John Woodburn and James Dunnell-Smith - is a group I first discovered via the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, initially via their dark and wonderful 're-working' of Enid Blyton's 'Faraway Tree' books, back in 2011.

When I knew they'd be headed to Theatre503 this month to perform their critically acclaimed pantomime, I was thrilled, and almost immediately put some questions to the three man troupe. And you can read the interview here.

'Cinderella And The Beanstalk' is on at Theatre503 from 25 Nov-2 Jan. See the venue website here for more info and to book tickets.

You know, I have been meaning to try and chat to Sajeela Kershi for a while now, and here's the perfect excuse: upcoming performances of her guest-driven storytelling show 'Immigrant Diaries', as well as imminent dates to see her solo show 'Shallow Halal'.

So, without further ado, I put some questions to the critically acclaimed stand up comedian, to find out more about both shows, and what to expect from her in the future. And you can read the interview here.

'Immigrant Diaries' is on at Leicester Square Theatre on 3 Dec and 22 Jan, and Sajeela performs 'Shallow Halal' at the same venue on 4 Dec and 23 Jan. See this page here for info on the former, and this page here for info on the latter.

Kelly Kingham - Inside Out | Museum Of Comedy | 27 Nov (pictured)
Our Edinburgh reviewer who saw Kelly Kingham this summer loved him, and wasn't the only critic in town wowed by his funny, touching, thought provoking show. His subject matter touches on the depressing - the realisation that one can trudge through life without ever really aspiring to happiness - but by all accounts he deals with such topics in an amusing and heart-warming manner. See this page here for more info and to book.

Pajama Men - 2 Man 3 Musketeers | Soho Theatre | 23 Nov-12 Dec
Right, so, I kinda missed the start of this run by the Pyjama Men, who've been plying London with their two-man-musketry for a few days now already. The surreal and hilarious duo take on this epic romance, and go through existential meltdown in the process... never expect anything less than excellent from this brilliantly talented pairing. More info and ticket purchasing opportunities right about here.

The Distance | Orange Tree Theatre | 26 Nov-19 Dec

Okay, so, just one day late with this one, which is probably a good thing, you know, it will give the show a chance to get into its stride. Not that I imagine it will need it, I expect a highly polished and professional performance, to be honest, which is why I am recommending the return of this highly acclaimed play by Deborah Bruce. It made a big impression on critics back in 2014, and although the cast has changed, it's in the hands of the same director, so I think we can expect it to be great. Find more info and book tickets here.

Andy Hamilton - Change Management | Blackheath Halls | 28 Nov
The fabulous funny man, as much seen on your telly screens, beloved of TV and radio panel games, and creator of one of my favourite programmes 'Outnumbered', heads for Blackheath Halls with his brand new solo show which, as you might deduce from the title, is all about change and how to cope. "Contains mild peril", says the blurb. I think I'm prepared to risk it. See this page here for more info and to book.

The Night Before Christmas | ArtsDepot | 28-29 Nov (pictured)
And talking of booking, hurry, hurry, hurry and book your tickets for this, if you want to go, as it's looking perilously close to sold out. And yes, I appreciate it's still November, but it's Official Christmas Month on Tuesday, so this weekend it's absolutely fair enough to start getting into the spirit. Unless you are an inveterate Scrooge, and if so, Bah. This is a sweet and lovely and magical show for you and your 3-8 year olds. Info here.

Jewish Comedy Festival | JW3 | 28 Nov-5 Dec
I think I am right in saying this is the second year for this festival, which all takes place at JW3 over the course of the next week. All sorts of high class acts and events are happening, which is why I have recommended the whole festival, not just one event. Obviously. So take a look at this page here, and make your own decisions. Go on, you can do it. I have faith in you all.

Christmas Fairs and Markets | various locations | 29 Nov
It's nearly, nearly, nearly December, and so of course I have begun trawling in earnest for Christmas themed events and productions (no matter how dire) of 'A Christmas Carol'. I found three things that are only on today, so you must partake of them today. Yes, today. There's the Hampstead Christmas Festival, there's the Christmas Designer Market at the Museum of Childhood, and there's Primrose Hill Christmas Fair. That's just to start you off. Bet you can find more if you go googling a bit. Info from all the links I already linked to.

Christmas at Kew | Kew Gardens | 25 Nov-2 Jan (pictured)

Yes, yes, I know I have already recommended a similar event, but I love this kind of thing so much that I just can't help myself. And this one carries on into January, and the other one didn't, so, if you can't go today, you've got the whole of the Christmas holidays to fit this in. Why would you want to miss the chance to wander around in the dark looking at gorgeously lit trees and illuminated fountains? And there are rides for the little ones, and everything. See this page here for all the info you need.

Desperate Measures | Jermyn Street | 24 Nov-20 Dec

Okay, so here's one for those of you who still don't want to think about Christmas, or indeed, don't actually celebrate Christmas. This is a new musical, based on Shakespeare's 'Measure For Measure', but set in 1960s London, with presumably the style of music to match. Sounds interesting, no? More info about the show and tickets from right about here.
Marny Godden - Flap 'Em On The Gate | Soho Theatre | 30 Nov (pictured)
I am totally down with the fact that female comedy acts are completely fed up of people talking about how women fare in comedy and are bored of being asked about it. But you know, they are still in a minority in that world, and they still come up against this ludicrous myth that "women aren't funny", so you know, I thought I'd have a funny-woman-themed set of tips today, starting with the utterly funny, lovely and adorable Marny Godden. She's one member of one of my favourite comedy trios The Grandees and she's brilliant at bringing hilarious characters to life. See this page here for info and tickets for her one night only at the Soho Theatre.

Revan and Fennell - Fan Club | Leicester Square Theatre | 30 Nov

And so to a double act of finely functioning femaleness, which garnered a healthily glowing review from one of our Edinburgh reviewers this summer. Accessible, clever sketches featuring satisfying punchlines, joyfully and energetically performed by a duo who exhibit great chemistry. I don't see how you can afford to miss this. Unless you are going to one of the other things I'm recommending for today instead. Info and booking stuff right here.

Bridget Christie - A Book For Her | Leicester Square Theatre | 16 Nov-2 Dec

Renowned comedian and writer Bridget Christie is nearing the end of her run at Soho Elsewhere (ie, Leicester Square theatre) so you might want to try and catch it before it's over. She's responsible for some of the cleverest and point-full stand-up I've seen and she's just written a highly interesting and amusing book on the subject, hence the title of this show. If you can't get tickets, still read the book. That's something to do in your house. But your house is probably in London, so it still counts. Kinda. Info here.

Dick Whittington | Wilton's Music Hall | 1-31 Dec (pictured)
Okay, so it's the first December and there's no getting away from Christmas now. If you don't identify as a Christian (I don't) it's fine; just look on this as your cheery midwinter festival, as established a really long time ago by pagans who were around a long time before Jesus was ever born. Anyway, it's another pantomime! Dick Whittington! In a great venue, and from a great team - it's written by comedy and broadcasting veteran Roy Hudd, also on Dame duty, and directed by Debbie Flitcroft. See this page here for all the info.

The Terrible Tale Of The Twiddly Widdlies | New Diorama | 1-5 Dec
This sounds utterly grim, and a bit Grimm, really, and yet I suspect it will also be very funny. The blurb promises dark and hilarious storytelling from Clem Garritty and Ollie Jones, two members of multi-award winning comedy troupe Kill The Beast. For those of you who need an antidote to all that pagan, midwinter frivolity, here, have some darkness instead. For more information and to book tickets, have a look at this page here.

Jackson's Way: The Christmas Top Up Power Seminar | Battersea Arts Centre | 1-12 Dec
And one for those of you who don't care either way about Christmas, because really, this is just prize-plucking comedy, isn't it? Will Adamson revives his Edinburgh Comedy Award-winning creation, life coach Chris John Jackson, for this festively twisted self-help spoof show. Info and tickets from right about here.

Wow! Said The Owl | Little Angel Theatre | 2 Dec-31 Jan
In my experience shows based on well loved children's picture books tend to turn out well, which is different from shows based on well loved grown up books, which often end very badly. Perhaps it's because actually, there's not that much plot to dwell on in a toddler's picture book and so the adapting process offers a bit of a free rein and room for invention. Anyway, enough theorising on the mechanics of theatrical adaptations from me, take your pre-schoolers to see this in the run up to Christmas. Suitable for age 2-4 types, and their carers, obv. More info from right about here.

Matthew Bourne's Sleeping Beauty | Sadler's Wells | 1 Dec-24 Jan (pictured)

Back by popular demand, this critically acclaimed ballet, which has been well received all over the world, returns to Sadler's Wells. Praised for its fresh and lively reinvention of the (potentially dull) classic, it's described as a "gothic romance for all ages". Ooooh, I really want to see it this time. A really special December treat. To book and find more info, see this page here.

How To Keep An Alien | Soho Theatre | 1-19 Dec
I love the sound of this critically acclaimed piece by Fringe First winner Sonya Kelly - "a story about falling in love and proving it to the government". Funny and poignant, this autobiographical show details the story of the writer's fight to secure an Irish visa for her Australian partner, and the no doubt annoyingly bureaucratic process that ensues. More info and tickets from the venue website here.
Wild Card - Leila McMillan: This Way, That Way | Lilian Baylis Studio | 3 Dec
'Wild Card' is Sadler's Wells' series of shows featuring the work of a new generation of dance creators. This edition is curated by Leila McMillan, a Californian choreographer based in London, and features her own 'Family Portrait', as well as a piece from Jukstapoz, aka Christine Gouzelis and Paul Blackman. For more info and to book, have a look here.

Immigrant Diaries: Sajeela Kershi and guests | Leicester Square Theatre | 3 Dec (pictures)

Given all the anti-immigrant/refugee rhetoric I keep hearing people spout, it will be a welcome change to hear funny tales from the immigrant/refugee perspective round at Sajeela Kershi's regular comedy storytelling show 'Immigrant Diaries'. If you can't make this one, never fear, there's another in January, but you'll be missing the chance to see actress and producer Shobu Kapoor, stand-up and actor Inder Manocha, and comedian and writer Dave Cohen. See this page here for more info and to book.

Rapunzel | Park Theatre | 3 Dec-2 Jan

'Tis verily the season for family shows, though I hasten to add that you don't need to be a family to go and see this. You are welcome to attend all by yourself, should you wish. I might wish it. I like going to the theatre on my own. But, enough of what I like doing, and back to Park Theatre's annual pantomime, which this year is 'Rapunzel'. It's from the creative pairing of Jez Bond and Mark Cameron, and if it's anything like their 2014 production of 'Jack and The Beanstalk', it'll be a quirky and original adaptation of the well loved tale. See this page here for all the gen.
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