PREVIEW: 10 reasons why we can’t wait for December

  1. Madonna tour

The undisputed Queen of Pop’s Rebel Heart tour arrives for two nights at The 02 from 1/12 and we’ll be reporting from there for you. This will be the 6th time we’ve seen Madge live and she’s reportedly more comfortable playing some of her oldest hits. Photograph via Facebook courtesy Madonna from Montreal copyright Kevin Mazur. Tickets here.

Read on for reasons 2 to 10 including Star Wars, Marina and the Diamonds, Guys and Dolls and Brian Cox

2. Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Out in the UK on 17/12. We can’t tell you how excited we are about the return of characters including Han Solo, Princess Leia, Luke Skywalker and Chewbacca (trailer above). We’re guessing the appearance of the original cast means this will be set 40 or so years after the original film. We’re expecting a parents/children storyline. All of this plus our favourite Game Of Thrones actress Gwendoline Christie.

3. Guys and Dolls at the Savoy

Jamie Parker was one of the reasons to see High Society at the Old Vic this year and returns here as Sky Masterson in one of our favourite musicals. It runs 10/12 – 12/3/16 and we’ll be reviewing a preview. Tickets here.

4. Fleur East album

Debut single Sax is behind only Adele and Justin Bieber at the time of writing. Debut album Love, Sax and Flashbacks is out 4/12. The X Factor performance above will remind many of her Uptown Funk breakthrough last year on the show when she was runner-up.

5. Marina and the Diamonds tour

Marina’s Froot album was one for the fans and a step away from the commercial Electra Heart (2012). The UK tour begins 20/11, including a Palladium show we’ll be reporting from in December and two nights at Camden’s Roundhouse in February. Tickets here.

6. Les Liaisons Dangereuses at the Donmar

We’re still unsure why Downton Abbey‘s Michelle Dockery pulled out but she is replaced by Elaine Cassidy, who was brilliant in Channel Four’s controversial No Offence this year. The cast includes Dominic West, Janet McTeer, Dusty‘s Alison Arnopp, Adjoa Andoh, Una Stubbs and Edward Holcroft (from TV’s London Spy). It runs 11/12 to 13/2/16. Tickets here. Clip from the magnificent film above.

7. Josh Widdicombe plays Blackheath

We last saw Dartmoor’s finest at Glastonbury, we’re enjoying his new BBC3 sitcom (10.30pm for the next six Wednesdays) and his tour reaches our local venue – a shout out to Blackheath Halls, where we also saw his Last Leg co-host Adam Hills – 19/12. Tickets in general here. For Blackheath here.

8. Brian Cox and Robin Ince’s Christmas Compendium of Reason

This year this annual event takes place 10 and 11/12 at the Eventim Apollo Hammersmith, tickets here. This unusual mixture of science and entertainment doesn’t sound half as much fun as it actually is. Last year we saw The Cure (see clip above) and American planetary scientist Carolyn Porch among many guests all in the name of charity.

9. Love and the TV comedy

Transgender comedy Boy Meets Girl was one of our favourite TV shows of the year (trailer above) and star Harry Hepple joins us at the BFI 8/12 to look at the genre. Tickets here.

and, finally, 10. Welcome to the monstas

December wouldn’t be the final month of the year without some awards and so we’ll be announcing our Oscars, sorry, monstas shortlist around 23/12, with the winners being revealed early in January.

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