Looking for the best night out in London? I’ve created a round-up of some of the best London Theatre, gigs and Cabarets in the city.
Whether you prefer theatre, live music or a raunchy Burlesque, here are a few ideas to get you started on planning your best night out in London.
I’ve gathered recommendations for a brilliant night out in London from some of the best travel writers around.
Best night out in London
Planning a night out in London
You can check listings in a huge variety of bars and clubs to suit your musical tastes.
The Little Orchestra
The Little Orchestra, recommended by a pair of passports. Whether you’re a classical music aficionado or just enjoy the occasional listen, The Little Orchestra makes for a great night out in London.
The group performs 4-5 weekend a year at venues throughout London and created an incredibly fun and welcoming atmosphere.
Their goal is to provide an intimate and chilled out atmosphere, the complete opposite of the old-school, stuffy concert halls people traditionally think of when they listen to classical music.
Classic music in London
The conductor, Nicholas Little, walks the audience through every piece, providing background and pointing out specific points that the listener should keep an ear out for.
You don’t have to know anything about classical music going into a show, but you’re bound to learn something while you’re there!
With food and drinks available before and after the show, these concerts are a great place to spend an entire evening, and a great alternative date night if you’re looking to try something new!
Live music in Camden
Camden has long been an iconic music hotspot, with many big acts such as the late Amy Winehouse, starting their careers in this quirky town.
There is a huge range of open mic nights and gigs that cater to a range of musical tastes. Camden is the place to see live music in London!
Spend a few nights exploring some of the best live music venues here including The Dublin Castle, rock venue The Monarch, landmark venue KOKO and the very essence of Camden, the Electric Ballroom.
Shakespeare at the Globe Theatre
Shakespeare at the Globe Theatre recommended by Natpacker. For me, nothing beats seeing a Shakespeare at the Globe Theatre in London.
It’s a totally different experience than going to Royal Shakespeare Company in Stratford-upon-Avon.
The theatre is a reconstruction of a 16th-century theatre, [well, as close as can be]. There is no roof so the theatre is open to the elements, but whatever the weather, it’s always fun.
I always get standing tickets (only £5), this is the best way to see Shakespeare. Standing you are part of the ‘pheasant rabble’ of Shakespeare’s day.
Visit the Globe Theatre
The atmosphere is great, you really get into the play. You are close to the action and often the actors interact with the ‘rabble’. Since the first time I went to the Globe, I developed a new love for Shakespeare plays.
Although it takes some time to ‘tune into’ the language, the simple sets, and powerful monologues make seeing a play here a great experience. It’s like stepping back into Shakespeare’s London.
02 Academy, Brixton
02 Academy, Brixton, recommended by Faramagan. A mere 5-minute walk from David Bowie’s childhood home is the 02 Academy, Brixton. Big name bands and intimate gig venue rarely go hand in hand in London, but the 02 Academy offers just that.
Set in an Art-Deco theatre, it is a thrilling experience to be sitting in the dress circle and witness your favourite indie bands take to the stage.
Live music Brixton
Despite the venue’s capacity considered small for London, some huge names have played over the years including Madonna, Eric Clapton, The Sex Pistols, Debbie Harry and Iron Maiden.
From the old fashioned theatre seats to the grand domed entrance, it’s an exciting experience watching music acts in such historic surroundings.
Despite it often hosting musical legends, I also recommend heading there if you’ve no idea who’s on the bill as chances are you’ll see the next big name in music before anyone else!
Burlesque show London
If you are looking for a rather risque evening, make sure to check out some of the best burlesque shows in London. Burlesque is a little bit of naughty and night with raunchy costumes and tantalising dances.
There are many Burlesque shows in London and some of the best burlesque venues include Proud City, Gin-House Burlesque and Cellar Door’s High Tea & Tease night.
There are also several venues that put on special burlesque events throughout the year such as the Courtesan bar and restaurant in Brixton.
They have an exciting and full roster of steamy burlesque nights for your viewing pleasure.
London West End Shows
There’s nothing quite seeing a theatre show in London. Lonon’s West End is one of the best places to see theatre in the world.
Enjoy some of London’s best musicals in beautiful old theatres full of history and character.
If you are wondering what shows are on in the West End, there is actually a huge variety of shows in London.
Some of the best West End shows include Wicked at the Apollo Victoria, the book of Mormon at Prince of Wales Theatre and the wildly popular Hamilton at Victoria Palace Theatre.
Get London West End Tickets
If musicals aren’t quite your bag then there are a whole host of London plays in the West End.
There are many popular West End plays and London has played host to a range of shows throughout the years.
To get the best theatre deals in London, head to lastminute.com.
Barbican Arts Centre
The Barbican Arts Centre, recommended by Delve into Europe. The largest Art Centre is in the middle of the Brutalist concrete estate of the same name.
It has long been one of my favourite places to go for a night out in London.
I’ve been to several photography exhibitions there and seen many films at the cinema.
However, the main pull for me has always been contemporary music: they’ve always managed to book some of the best touring bands and performers for their London gig.
The auditorium is quite small and intimate, with the audience in a semicircle around the stage.
Some of the best performances I’ve seen there include Neko Case, Oumou Sangare, Orchestre Poly-Rythmo de Cotonou and Benda Bilili.
London Comedy nights
Some of the best comedy nights in London are often in the smaller and quirkier venues.
Whilst there are plenty of iconic comedy venues, there are also lots of underground London comedy clubs and old school haunts.
For cheap laughs head along to Laugh Out London comedy clu. Here you’ll find some of the most reasonably priced alternative comedy nights.
For popular comedians on the circuit try the popular Covent Garden Comedy Club. They have a well-earned reputation for booking the finest comedy acts that are hot on the scene right now.
Where to see comedy in London
For an authentic comedy experience why not try The Top Secret Comedy Club, the UK’s highest-rated comedy club.
It takes place on Drury lane every weekend and is guaranteed to give you the giggles.
For ‘top-end’ laughs try the iconic Comedy Store, located smack bang in London’s West End.
This iconic venue sees several thousand people every week come through the doors to enjoy the best comedians around.
London Cabaret Shows
A good cabaret show is more than just titillating, it brings together ideas around gender, identity, politics and sex in a dazzling display.
Some of the best cabaret shows in London combine several of these elements into an entertaining evening performance.
The London Cabaret Club combines the quintessential British fine dining experience with an innovative, interactive cabaret show.
Where to see Cabaret in London
Try the London Cabaret Club for a delightful combination of innovative cabaret and fine dining.
Located in Holborn this cabaret sure is sure to both satisfy your inner foodie and ignite your cabaret desires.
For some elusive and underground cabaret be sure to hunt down Rumour Mill.
Based at a top-secret location in Hackney, there are circus displays, dancing and a bit of cheeky burlesque thrown in to boot.
What is your Best night out in London? What else should be added to this list? Let me know in the comments below!