London with kids Christmas ideas {Part 2}: The Tiger Who Came To Tea (Stage production, Lyric Theatre)

London with kids Christmas ideas {Part 2}: The Tiger Who Came To Tea (Stage production, Lyric Theatre)

The Tiger Who Came to Tea is a firm and beloved favourite in our house. Written by Judith Kerr and first published in 1968, it was adapted for the stage as a musical play by David Wood and we were invited to a performance at the Lyric Theatre in Shaftesbury Avenue during their Christmas run.

We took Pip and her cousin, who is 4 and half, and they were both entranced. As the play ended, Pip turned to me and said “can we watch it again”. The running time was 55 minutes which was perfect for that age group, and the simple format of one set with only 3 main actors meant that it was super easy for the young audience to follow along, and they were guided by repetitive motifs to guide them as to the plot changes, which I thought worked really well, such as a ticking clock interlude to show the passing of time.


I particularly loved the tiger, and judging from the reactions not just from my kids but those all around us, I wasn’t alone in this view. He (and I do always think of the tiger as male, perhaps for some of the reasons I discuss in this post about the book although there were no sinister implications whatsoever in this adaptation) was extremely compelling – both in his movements and his interactions with Mum and Sophie.

I don’t come from a family where we went to a show or panto each year (although I did go to a number of ballets and plays as child/teenager) so whilst I love musicals, my experience has come mainly through film. Last year though, we took Pip to a children’s ballet performance at Sadler’s Wells which she was entranced by, and at Christmas we also went to see some panto which I found surprisingly enjoyable. Since becoming parents we were determined to make time to go to the theatre more though, particularly with Pip as a family, and so we are also off to another performance next weekend, and the Snowman ballet Christmas Eve. I could highly recommend a family excursion to see The Tiger Who Came to Tea this Christmas!

We watched the trailer below the evening before we went, which really helped give Pip some expectation of what would happen, and I thought did a very good job of giving a flavour of the performance.

There was plenty of opportunity for the audience to join in with some singing or dancing but was done in a way which meant that there was no obligation but allowed the children to be able to stand up and interact in a totally appropriate way.

Performances are showing until 10 January 2016 and tickets are from £14.50 to £23.50 depending on timings and seat choice, which seemed reasonable for a West End theatre performance. All details here.

We were kindly given press tickets to the performance. I received no payment for this post. 

Photos provided by the PR company as no photography was permitted in the performance.



  1. Candy Pop December 11, 2015 / 3:03 pm

    It looks like such a sweet production and a lovely Christmassy thing to do!

  2. laura redburn December 11, 2015 / 5:49 pm

    despite (even now at 29) being scared of people in animal costumes, this looks rather lovely!

  3. Adele December 11, 2015 / 8:21 pm

    Ooh, my parents took my girls to see a production of The Tiger Who Came to Tea in Bristol back in the summer. I wonder if this is the same one. They absolutely loved it. My 4.5-year-old is always asking when next we can go to the theatre.

  4. Alice December 11, 2015 / 9:13 pm

    OH! Elfie would love this – she’s a huge fan of The Tiger Who Came To Tea. We must go!!

  5. Kathryn December 13, 2015 / 5:46 pm

    My kids love the book too but like you I’ve always felt there must be far more to this story. Thankfully this stage production looks just lovely! xx

  6. Molly December 13, 2015 / 8:47 pm

    My 5 year old would utterly love this. I was actually recently reading reviews of this online and it looks like a fantastic production. If we lived nearer London we’d have definitely bought tickets!

  7. Jo December 14, 2015 / 11:03 pm

    I love The Tiger Who Came To Tea and the production looks amazing! That tiger rocks.

  8. Alison Perry December 17, 2015 / 8:25 pm

    Oh this looks BRILLIANT. I loved the book, growing up, and it’s so amazing to be able to read our favourite books to our children now, isn’t it? I did go to theatre and shows regularly, as a child, and really want to carry that on with G – she’s been to a few and loves them.

  9. fritha December 21, 2015 / 3:09 pm

    I’ve wanted to see this for a while now, think we’ll defo try and make it next year it sounds brilliant! x

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