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Get Festive at the Barbican this December

Whether it’s a show, an exhibition or a screening, a mince pie and a festive cocktail, or for specially curated Christmas gift-shopping, the Barbican is the perfect destination this festive season.


  • Barbican Bar & Grill: Christmas Burger and festive cocktails
  • Barbican Brasserie: Traditional Christmas dinner
  • Barbican Kitchen & Benugo Café: Mulled wine, Bailey’s hot chocolate, Bailey’s latte and Jack Daniels Americano; Turkey, Bacon and Stuffing + Brie and Fig Chutney Sandwiches; Cranberry & Apple Loaf and Christmas Crumble Slice
  • Special My Neighbour Totoro @ Barbican Kitchen: Ramen and Bubble Tea
  • Martini Bar: Special winter cocktails

BARBICAN SHOP – A collection of gifts for culture lovers

BARBICAN GIFT MEMBERSHIP - a year of art, music, film and theatre

  • Members enjoy the best of the Barbican with benefits across our programme.









Boasting 3 restaurants – Barbican Bar & Grill; Barbican Brasserie and the Barbican Kitchen –, our main Foyer café; the always welcoming Cinema Café (Cinemas 2 & 3 in Beech Street); plus our Martini Bar, there are several places to eat, drink and escape the winter blues at the Barbican.

Our Benugo café and Barbican Kitchen (Level G) is now serving a range of warming drinks and comforting winter foods including mulled wine, baileys hot chocolate and latte, and a cheeky Jack Daniels Americano in the drinks’ menu as well as the season’s favourites turkey, bacon and stuffing or brie and fig chutney sandwiches; and cranberry and apple loaf and Christmas crumble slice for our sweet-toothed visitors.

Elsewhere in the Centre, visitors can enjoy a Christmas Burger and cocktails at Barbican Bar & Grill (level 1); a traditional Christmas dinner at Barbican Brasserie (Level 2); or indulge on our festive cocktails at the Martini Bar (Mezzanine Level).

And, for My Neighbour Totoro lovers, there will also be Ramen and Bubble Tea on offer in the Barbican Kitchen throughout the run.


BARBICAN SHOP – a collection of gifts for culture lovers
This festive season, the Barbican Shop will be stocking a collection of stylish and creative gifts by emerging designers and makers inspired by the Barbican’s art and culture.

To tie in with the smash hit family show My Neighbour Totoro running in the Barbican Theatre over Christmas, there will be accessories and a curated selection of books about Studio Ghibli, Manga & Japanese Folklore. Barbican Shop is also collaborating with the Japanese Gallery in Kensington to showcase genuine Studio Ghibli & Manga film posters and animation cells that will be on display and for sale instore.

And inspired by the exhibition RE/SISTERS: A Lens on Gender and Ecology, currently in the Barbican Art Gallery, there are hand crafted natural soaps by BrambleWood, homeware items made from recycled plastic waste by Mull Club, and a collection of exclusive art pieces handmade by the founding members of performance art group The Neo-Naturists, who are featured in the exhibition.

There will also be a ‘Barbican Boogie Wonderland’ theme throughout the Barbican Shop this year, celebrating the iconic styles and designs of the 1970’s. Gifts include festive cocktail kits and cocktail herb seed sets from London brand Herboo, a range of women’s apparel inspired by a 70’s floral kaleidoscope print, themed Christmas decorations including disco ball baubles & fairy lights, rainbow glitter tree ornaments and a ‘kitchen disco’ neon light box, limited edition Gingerbread and Black Forest chocolate bars from Coco Chocolatier, and music inspired stocking fillers including socks, games & a hand-picked selection of disco vinyl records.

From gifts, books and accessories to exclusive commissions from emerging designers and makers, discover the latest Barbican Shop ranges instore on Level G of the Centre and online at


BARBICAN GIFT MEMBERSHIP - a year of art, music, film and theatre

Members enjoy the best of the Barbican with benefits across our programme. Gift Memberships include a year of free gallery entry, priority booking, discounts, Members' events and access to the Members' Lounge.

Gift Memberships can be bought right up until the last-minute, as the email voucher is sent instantly.

Recipients can pick a start date that suits them, as their Membership can be started at any time in 2024. Find out more about Gift Membership and our T&Cs online at




My Neighbour Totoro

Tue 21 Nov 2023  Sat 23 Mar 2024

Barbican Theatre

Joe Hisaishi and the Royal Shakespeare Company present Studio Ghibli’s My Neighbour Totoro (Tue 21 Nov – Sat 23 March) in collaboration with Improbable and Nippon TV. Adapted for the stage by Tom Morton-Smith and winner of six Olivier Awards and five WhatsOnStage Awards, this enchanting coming-of-age story returns to the Barbican Theatre for a strictly limited 18-week season later this month.

Get Happy

Thu 7—Tue 19 Dec

The Pit, Barbican

Told by an Idiot create a world of artfully controlled chaos as this show for curious babies, kids and adults of all ages returns to the Barbican. Inspired by the work of Charlie Chaplin, Dr Seuss and Pina Bausch, Get Happy is an unexpected variety performance, bursting with quirky playfulness and off-the-wall humour.


Songs from the Shows with the BBC Singers with Principal Guest Conductor Owain Park

Fri 1 Dec, 7.30pm

Milton Court Concert Hall

Kicking off the festive season, special guest Clare Teal joins the BBC Singers, members of the BBC Concert Orchestra and Principal Guest Conductor Owain Park for a night of popular show tunes from West End and Broadway.

Singer and broadcaster Clare Teal will present the evening and joins the BBC Singers for some of her favourite songs from the shows. With well-known classics from Rodgers and Hammerstein, Lionel Bart and more, this promises to be the best way to start your countdown to Christmas.


Britten Sinfonia

Tue 12 Dec, 7.30pm

Barbican Hall

A rare chance to hear Handel’s seasonal masterpiece in Mozart’s compelling re-imagining for late 18th century orchestra. With Mozart's addition of trombones, horns, flutes and clarinets to Handel’s oboes, bassoon and trumpets, there is an abundance of rich and surprising textures – but every inspired note of Handel’s original remains the same.

Conductor Sofi Jeannin is the much-admired Chief Conductor of BBC Singers. Together they join Britten Sinfonia and a quartet of outstanding young soloists – three of them prize-winners at the London Handel Singing Competition and the fourth, Laurence Kilsby, recent winner of both the Wigmore Hall International Song Competition and Cesti Baroque Competition in Innsbruck.

Raymond Gubbay Christmas Festival 2023

Raymond Gubbay Christmas Festival returns to Barbican Hall with all the traditional Christmas music you’d expect, and some great surprises to make this December the most wonderful time of the year.

Christmas at the Movies

Sat 16 Dec, 7.30pm

Barbican Hall

London Concert Orchestra perform great music from some of your favourite festive films of all time, including music from Elf, E.T, Frozen, The Grinch and more.

Christmas Carol Singalong

Sun 17 Dec, 2pm & 5.15pm

Barbican Hall

Christmas Carol Singalong is coming to town. Jonathan Cohen and Louise Dearman provide some festive family fun with some of the very best Christmas songs and seasonal classics.

Christmas with King's College Choir

Wed 20 Dec, 7.30pm

Barbican Hall

The Choir of King's College, Cambridge heralds the Christmas season, joined on stage by the superb Crouch End Festival Chorus. A glorious programme of festive classics includes a sublime selection of carols performed by the angelic voices of the chapel choristers as well as Carols for all.

Love Actually (15) with Live Orchestra

Thu 21 Dec, 7.30pm

Barbican Hall

The star-studded Christmas favourite Love Actually arrives this December with a full live orchestra.

Written and directed by Richard Curtis and initially released in 2003, Love Actually follows ten different yet interweaving stories of love around the festive period. Accompanying the film is a full orchestra performing Craig Armstrong’s captivating score. Armstrong is perhaps one of the UK’s most recognised film composers, with his work being awarded a BAFTA for Achievement in Film Music.

Candlelit Carols

Fri 22 Dec, 7.30pm

Barbican Hall

A sublime concert of carols and seasonal classics, staged in an evocative candle-lit style setting. The programme includes Joy to the World, Handel’s Eternal Source of Light Devine and the Christmas sequence from Messiah, Bach’s Air on the G String, Good King Wencelas and more.

All I Want for Christmas... Live

Sat 23 Dec, 2.30pm

Barbican Hall

Raymond Gubbay Limited presents a brand-new show that promises to bring joy and laughter to audiences of all ages. All I Want For Christmas…Live boasts a spectacular blend of festive pop hits and traditional favourites, featuring a dazzling live ensemble band and four headline singers. No matter what Christmas means to you, this concert has it all.

The Best of John Williams

Wed 27 Dec, 7.30pm

Barbican Hall

An awe inspiring-concert celebrating the iconic scores of John Williams, including music from Harry Potter, Star Wars, Jurassic Park, Indiana Jones and many more.

Beethoven's Ninth

Thu 28 Dec, 7.30pm

Barbican Hall

An unforgettable all-Beethoven programme featuring the monumental Choral Symphony with its climactic ‘Ode to Joy’ performed by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra.

Horrible Histories: Horrible Christmas

Fri 29 Dec, 2pm & 4.30pm

Barbican Hall

Horrible Histories proudly presents the terrific tale of Christmas. When Christmas comes under threat from a jolly man dressed in red, it’s up to one young boy to save the day. From Victorian villains to Medieval monks, Puritan parties to Tudor treats, join us on a hair-raising journey through the history of Christmas in the company of Charles Dickens, Oliver Cromwell, King Henry VIII and St Nicholas, as they come together to save the festive season.

Glenn Miller Orchestra

Sat 30 Dec, 2.30pm

Barbican Hall

The UK’s most celebrated big band returns, swinging you back in time with Glenn Miller’s own arrangements of favourite wartime chart toppers and hits from the forties. Legendary bandleader Ray McVay will be joined on stage by special guests The Swing Time Jivers to perform Opus One, Moonlight Serenade, Chattanooga Choo Choo and many more.

The Music of Lord of the Rings, Game of Thrones and Beyond

Sat 30 Dec, 7.30pm

Barbican Hall

Experience epic music from Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, Game of Thrones, Star Wars, and beyond as the worlds of TV, film and fantasy are brought to life by a full symphony orchestra and choir.

The Music of Zimmer vs Williams

Sun 31 Dec, 2.30pm

Barbican Hall

It's time to settle the scores, as the London Concert Orchestra performs the best scores from two of the greatest film composers of all time in one fabulous programme.

New Year's Day Proms

Mon 1 Jan 2024, 3pm

Barbican Hall

Ring in the new year with a stirring celebration of classical favourites, including a complimentary drink. The programme includes Mendelssohn’s Hebrides Overture, Sibelius’ Finlandia, Verdi’s 'La donna è mobile' from Rigoletto, and Elgar’s Land of Hope and Glory.




UK 2023. Dir Paul King, 112min

From Fri 8 Dec

Based on the extraordinary character at the centre of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Wonka tells the wondrous story of how the world's greatest inventor, magician and chocolate-maker became the beloved Willy Wonka we know today. Directed by Paul King with star-studded cast including Timothee Chalamet, Olivia Colman, Hugh Grant, Rowan Atkinson, Matt Lucas.

Family Film Club Special: Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas (PG)

+ Festive Film Quiz

Sat 9 Dec, 11am

Cinema 2

US 1993, Dir Henry Sellick, 75min

Family Film Week ends the year with Tim Burton's gothic classic The Nightmare Before Christmas, now in its 30th year. Directed by the wonderful Henry Sellick (Coraline) this off-the-wall classic has many of the hallmarks of Tim Burton’s signature style; gothic visuals, dark humour, signature music and quirky characters, as well as a mischievous central lead and a warm-hearted love story that make it a treat for young audiences getting ready to for the festive season. Before the film there will be an introduction that includes a few fun facts about the filmmakers and an on stage quiz to get everyone in the mood for December’s festivities. P.S. Festive jumpers encouraged!  

NT Encore: The Book of Dust – LIVE (12A)

Broadcast live from London’s Bridge Theatre

Sat 16 Dec, 2.30pm

Cinema 2

Set twelve years before the epic His Dark Materials trilogy, this gripping adaptation revisits Philip Pullman’s fantastical world in which waters are rising and storms are brewing.

Two young people and their dæmons, with everything at stake, find themselves at the centre of a terrifying manhunt. In their care is a tiny child called Lyra Belacqua, and in that child lies the fate of the future. And as the waters rise around them, powerful adversaries conspire for mastery of Dust: salvation to some, the source of infinite corruption to others.

Eighteen years after his groundbreaking production of His Dark Materials at the National Theatre, director Nicholas Hytner returns to Pullman’s parallel universe.

Free Senior Community Screening: The Sapphires (PG)
Australia 2012, Dir Wayne Blair, 103 min
Mon 11 Dec, 11am
Cinema 2

A free end of year Senior Community Screening of The Sapphires, a musical comedy set in 1960’s regional Australia, where Gail (Deborah Mailman), Julie (Jessica Mauboy), Cynthia (Miranda Tapsell) and Kay (Shari Sebbens) leave their Aboriginal community to seek stardom by entertaining US troops in Vietnam.

With the support of their chaotic manager Dave (Chris O’Dowd), the five embark on a transformative and emotional journey to realise their dreams. Based on a true story and subsequent stage play by Tony Briggs, The Sapphires is irresistibly charming, filled with soul and has electric performances from its leading stars Chris O’Dowd and Deborah Mailman. Post screening there will be free tea, coffee and festive treats for all to share.

Senior Community Screenings welcome 60+ cinema goers to watch the latest new releases every other Monday morning, with tickets at £6 (+booking fee).

Royal Opera House: The Nutcracker LIVE (U*)

Sun 17 Dec, 2pm

Cinema 1
Live on screen, an enchanting ballet which is a sparkling festive treat for the whole family. Join Clara at a delightful Christmas Eve party that becomes a magical adventure once everyone else is tucked up in bed. Peter Wright’s much-loved production for The Royal Ballet, with period designs by Julia Trevelyan Oman, keeps true to the spirit of this festive ballet classic, combining the thrill of the fairy tale with spectacular classical dancing.


Barbican Conservatory x Ranjani Shettar (Free entry, until Fri 1 Mar 2024) As the nights draw in, it’s a great time to visit the Barbican Conservatory, which is hosting a spectacular new site-specific commission by Indian sculptor Ranjani Shettar. Cloud songs on the horizon is the artist’s first major institutional show in Europe and features five new, large-scale, suspended sculptures across the entirety of the Conservatory space. Tickets are free and available Sundays all day and Friday evenings after 5pm. We strongly encourage reserving tickets online. You can also gain entry to the Conservatory when you buy a ticket to Re/Sisters: A Lens on Gender and Ecology (pending availability).


CINEMA: Family Film Club, Every Sat, 11 am
The best in new releases, international gems, archive classics and specially curated programmes for families every Saturday morning. Please check our website for listings and more details. Perfect to keep the little ones entertained during the holidays.

BARBICAN KITCHEN: Kids Eat Free: Barbican Kitchen is a family-friendly restaurant located on the ground floor of the Barbican. Children under 10 can get a free kid’s meal from our kids’ menu with every adult meal over the value of £10 purchased.

SQUISH SPACE: Before or after all that shopping/dining/show visiting, you’ll need a rest for you and your little one. Barbican’s free creative play space for under 5s and their families. Designed by artist/designer duo India Harvey and Lisa Marie Bengtsson, the space brings people together to learn through interaction, collaboration, and play. Squish Space is open on selected days each week, from 10.30am to 16.30pm. Check our website to book your free space.


  • November: Mon 13, Tue 14, Wed 15, Thu 16, Fri 17, Sat 18, Sun 19, Mon 20, Tue 21, Wed 22, Thu 23, Fri 24, Sat 25, Wed 29, Thu 30
  • December: Fri 1, Sat 2, Sun 3, Mon 11, Tues 12, Wed 13, Thu 14, Fri 15, Sat 16, Sun 17, Mon 18, Tue 19, Wed 20, Thu 21, Fri 22, Sat 23, Wed 27, Thu 28, Fri 29, Thu 30, Fri 31