Silent night? Yeah, right. December’s celebrations are a prime time to make some noise, and London has no shortage of revues, supper clubs, adult pantos and other festive gatherings brimming with merriment. Check out This Is Cabaret’s selection of events for the Christmas season and spend your holidays with enough cabaret, burlesque and circus daredevils to make any carol singer blush.



International cabaret star Meow Meow performs Christmas show Little Match Girl at the Southbank Centre


Alice in Poundland
December 2nd-5th,9th-12th; January 9th-11th; 20:30. Battersea Barge (London WC2H 7BX). £12.95
Back for another year is the Battersea Barge panto, this time re-imagining Lewis Carroll’s classic tale with a decidedly adult twist. The December shows are sold out but there are still tickets available for the January dates.


Bacanal Christmas Brunch
December 15th, 12:30. The Box (London W1F 0SD). £50
If staying up past midnight to enjoy the arcane pleasures of The Box isn’t your style, here’s a chance to see what the fuss is all about at an urbane hour. Bacanal’s brunch-club sessions are a heady mixture of gourmet grub and compelling cabaret followed by hours of electro-techno.  With DJs Guy Laurie and Ali M, plus variety curated by The Box.


The Burlesque Bazaar
December 22nd, 13:00-18:00. Old Queen’s Head (London N1 8LN). Free
Some of the UK’s top showgirls will be clearing out their closets and selling everything from top hats to stripper heels. Whether you want to find a bargain last-minute present or put together your New Year’s Eve ensemble, there will be plenty here to create the perfect outfit.


Carry On Christmas Campalong
December 16th, 13:00. Battersea Barge (London SW8 5BP). £7 (£5 advance)
Mister Meredith, Ruby Venezuela and Divine Miss Em serve Sunday lunch with all the trimmings. “Imagine Babs, Kenny and Hattie singing in the style of Bette Midler, Chas and Dave and Divine,” they say.


The Comatose Beauty
December 5th-6th, 11th-12th, 18th-19th, 27th-28th; 20:30. Royal Vauxhall Tavern (London SE11 5HY). £10-25
The Royal Vauxhall Tavern’s annual panto returns with This Is Cabaret’s own Myra Dubois writing and starring alongside Sharia Law and her son Alp Haydar, Holestar, Lorraine Bowen and Mzz Kimberley in the title role.


David Hoyle and Richard Thomas: Merrie Hell
December 1st and 4th, 21:30. Leicester Square Theatre (London WC2H 7BX). £10
The seminal drag provocateur joins forces with the controversial composer for a night of festive filth and dark original songs.


Dexter Clark’s Festive Flounce!
December 1st and 4th, 21:30. Leicester Square Theatre (London WC2H 7BX). £10
It’s the season to be bitchy, and the irreverent stylist to the stars is ready to dish out the latest celebrity gossip, as well as hot tips on how to survive Christmas.


Erotic Meet: With Bells On!
December 8th, 18:00. Green Carnation (London W1D 4DD). £20
Join a kinky Christmas cabal in Soho for a stage show, plus a burlesque dance class, life drawing and the usual erotic raffle.  With burlesque artist Lolo Brow, performance poet S.P. Howarth and nighmarish crooner Mat Fraser.


The Folly Mixtures Revue Christmas Cracker
December 5th, 20:00. Madame Jojo’s (London W1F 0SE). £10-£35
The celebrated burlesque troupe wraps up its monthly residency at Madame Jojo’s for the year with some Yuletide titillation. Includes entry to LGBT party Trannyshack, after the show.


Ivy Paige’s Scandalous!
December 30th, 20:30. Leicester Square Theatre (London WC2H 7BX). £20
If you missed out on the chance to win tickets, it’s still not too late to enter Ivy Paige’s House of Whorecraft and witness a burlesque tale of love and betrayal. With a live original score performed by blues pianist Pete Saunders.


Meow Meow’s Little Match Girl
December 13th-16th; 19th-23rd; 26th-30th; see website for show times. Queen Elizabeth Hall, Southbank Centre (London SE1 8XX). £15-£30
International starlet Meow Meow returns to the London stage with her musical take on the classic Hans Christian Andersen tale.


The Wam Bam Club’s Christmas Ball
December 20th, 19:00. Café de Paris (London WC2E 8HN). £35-£120
The weekly Saturday revue presents a collection of talented artistes including burlesque bombshell Bettsie Bon Bon,  musical comedy trio Scales Of The Unexpected and Queen-loving aerialist Marcos.


Photo credits: Magnus Hastings