Ever fancied losing yourself in another world for an evening?
London is brimming with immersive dining and theatre experiences, all of which vary in levels of audience participation — so there's something for budding thespians and introverts alike.
From TV-themed dinner experiences to political problem solving, here are our top picks of the best immersive experiences running in the capital this month.
Dinner is Coming
The end of GoT is coming — so what better way to mark the final season of the fantasy drama than by getting fully immersed in the action? Fusing food, theatre and comedy, this parody experience is set at the wedding feast of (ahem) Jaffrey Bearathon and Margarine of the Trywell Family. Guests are asked to pledge their allegiance to their house of choice and can swap as the night goes on, as further secrets are uncovered. It all sounds very serious but, in fact, this immersive experience tends to get rather rowdy, especially with the bar open throughout. The actors certainly deliver on the Thrones-themed banter, too.
Crisis? What Crisis?
Although it might feel like it with the ongoing Brexit shambles, this isn’t the first time the country has faced an enormous political crisis. This immersive experience harks back to late 1970s Britain, after the Winter of Discontent and just before Margaret Thatcher came to power — a time when strikes crippled the country and government was at a deadlock. Crisis? What Crisis? invites guests to take on the role of government ministers, to try and sort out the widespread chaos — it will be a race against the clock to try and find a solution and prevent a disaster for the country.
Opens May 8, Croydon, CR0 2TO, tickets can be purchased here
Scripts for Supper: The Wind in the Willows
This literature-themed experience is one for bookworms and animal lovers alike. The Scripts for Supper team have launched their new event, based on Kenneth Grahame's classic The Wind in the Willows, where guests will follow the adventures of Mole, Ratty, Toad and Badger in a real-life farmyard setting. The multi-sensory dining event merges al fresco eating with light-hearted theatre and is the brainchild of MasterChef semi-finalist, actor and writer Annie McKenzie. This summer, the experience will embark on a whistle stop tour of the capital’s urban farms, starting at Stepney City Farm, then touring to Spitalfields City Farm and Mudchute City Farm.
From May 10, at Stepney City Farm, Spitalfields City Farm and Mudchute City Farm, check website for various dates, scriptsforsupper.co.uk
The Swell Mob
The Swell Mob invites guests to dress up and live out their hedonistic dreams at a 19th century taproom, and to party alongside a gang of colourful characters from the Victorian underworld. The ambitious multi-sensory experience, which promises puppetry and cabaret, asks guests to dance, sing, gamble, and cheat in this unwholesome world. It’s opening at London’s COLAB Factory, a venue solely dedicated to immersive and interactive theatre, following a successful run at Edinburgh Fringe last year.
From May 9, 84 Long Ln, SE1 4AU, theswellmob.com
The War of the Worlds
Another classic novel is getting an immersive makeover this summer — H.G. Wells’ sci-fi novel The War of the Worlds will be brought to life through the use of cutting-edge technology. It’s set to be the first to combine VR, AR and holograms into one immersive experience, and both real-life and virtual actors will lead groups of 12 through the Martian invasion. The show will be split into two acts, with an interval in the Red Week bar, where guests can enjoy a drink and also hear songs from Jeff Wayne’s musical.
From May 30, 56 Leadenhall St, EC3A 2DX, dotdot.london
For those who don’t feel like they can commit to an immersive theatre experience, there’s an alternative offering in Haggerston. Otherworld is London’s most immersive VR arcade, with 16 different portals waiting to transport guests to another world — get it? The games themselves change on a regular basis, to ensure they’re always kept up to date. It's less full-on than theatre, but still plenty of fun.