Winter has arrived in New York City, and that means it’s time for ice skating, maybe some skiing or snowtubing, and checking out the latest museum exhibits. But it’s also a great time to see a show! Lots of shows for kids are taking the stage in town this season, from Elmo and friends to Junior Master Chefs, puppets aplenty, the return of Riverdance and more. Read on to see our favorite shows for kids in NYC this season!

Save on Broadway

PSA: you can two-for-one tickets to several Broadway shows during NYC Broadway Week, January 21-February 9. (Tickets on sale now) And, the official "Kids' Night on Broadway" is February 25 this year, which also features two tickets for the price of one. Tickets on sale now! 

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photo: Jeremy Daniel

For a Familiar Tale Set to Music: Charlotte's Web

E.B. White's loving tale of the friendship between a pig named Wilbur and a little gray spider named Charlotte is set to music in this production for kids ages four and up. The story?: Wilbur has a problem: he needs to avoid winding up as pork chops! Charlotte, a fine writer and true friend, hatches a plan to fool Farmer Zuckerman. Spinning the words "Some Pig" in her web, Charlotte weaves a “miracle” which not only makes Wilbur a prize pig but also ensures his place on the farm forever. The show features dilly and endearing farm animals and explores bravery, selfless love, and the true meaning of friendship. Don't miss the meet and greet with the cast after the show! 

Jan. 26, 2 p.m.
Tickets: $13
Kingsborough College
2001 Oriental Blvd.
Manhattan Beach
718-368-5596
Online: onstageatkingsborough.org

photo: Tom Castles

For a Solo Circus: David Darwin: One Man Sideshow

As the name of the show says, he's just one guy, but he can do a lot! Expect a raucous morning of whip-cracking, plate-spinning, lassoing, unicycling, impossible contortions and more from performer David Darwin. He juggles, dances, spins, contorts and sings (with both legs behind his head!) in amazing acts that earned him an appearance on NBC's America's Got Talent. Now's your chance to catch him up close and in the flesh!

Feb. 1, 11 a.m.
Tickets: $17; $14/members
Leonard Nimoy Thalia Theater
2537 Broadway at 95th Street
Upper West Side
212-864-5400
Online: symphonyspace.org

photo: Hit the Lights! Theatre Co.

For Shadow Puppetry & Short Attention Spans: Taste the Clouds

Perfect for younger theater goers (ages 2-5 recommended) Taste the Clouds,  from the award-winning theater company Hit the Lights! Theatre Co., shows how your senses can make impossible things possible. The 30-minute production incorporates shadow puppetry, live music, and immersive theater and follows the journey of a young girl as she learns to harness her imagination and uses her senses to better understand the world around her. 

Sundays, through April 26, 10 a.m. & Noon
Tickets: $20
The Flea Theater
20 Thomas St. 
Online: nycchildrenstheater.org

photo: Buatti-RamosPhotography

For a Sensory-Friendly Soapy Show: SUDS

All are welcome at this immersive, multi-sensory theatrical experience that takes the seemingly mundane task of going to the laundromat and transforms it into an exhilarating adventure filled with water, soap, and bubbles. SUDS  is specially-created for children with autism and other developmental disabilities. Adventure Guides are paired with audience members to tailor the production to their unique needs and interests, and along the way people meet an engaging cast of characters, including a dancing sweatshirt and a laundry "monster"—who is actually very nice. Recommended for kids ages five to eight, SUDS is 45 minutes long. 

Feb. 1-9, various times
Tickets: $25
Clark Studio Theater 
165 W. 65th St. 
Midtown 
Lincoln Center 
Online: lincolncenter.org

photo: Christopher Duggan

For a Toddler-Friendly Farm Show: Hatched

This original production from Treehouse Shakers is intended for the youngest of theatergoers, ages six and younger. Hatched tells the story of a newborn chick emerging from her shell at sunrise to a strange and busy world. Performed through movement, handcrafted puppets, and very little human dialogue, the story is set amidst an American family farm. The chick is met by a feisty old rooster, a wobbly calf learning to walk, a gaggle of dancing chicks, a lamb, and a noisy nest of baby birds, and audience members are encouraged to interact with the newborn animals as they explore their worlds and even imitate their favorite farm animals. Bonus!: A puppetry workshop will be held on Saturday, February 8 at noon, following the performance for ages three and up.

Tickets: $15-30
Feb. 7-10, 11 a.m.
BAM Fisher, Hillman Studio
321 Ashland Pl.
Fort Greene
Online: hatched20.bpt.me

photo: Symphony Space

For a Hilariously Explosive Show: Doktor Kaboom: Look Out! Science is Coming!

Doktor Kaboom is an over-the-top German physicist with a passion for science that knows no bounds. Sporting chrome goggles, an orange lab coat, motorcycle boots, and wicked cool hair, Doktor Kaboom travels the world, entertaining adults and children alike with an explosive comedic style. His improvisational skill promises no two shows will ever be the same, and his character-driven comedy will entertain kids of all ages. This captivating, hilarious and fun series of increasingly spectacular, and (often) successful, demonstrations of the physical sciences includes an homage to Mister Wizard, a tabletop catapult, illusions of the mind, and chemical reactions.

Feb. 8, 11 a.m.
Tickets: $17; $14/members
Peter Jay Sharp Theater 
2537 Broadway
Upper West Side
212-864-5400
Online: symphonyspace.org

photo: Mike Naddeo

For a Paleozoic Play: Riddle of the Trilobites

Go waaaaay back in time with this original musical set 500 million years ago, when all life dwells in one sea and trilobites rule the ocean floor. Follow young Aphra as she discovers that the fate of the entire trilobite kingdom rests on her shelled shoulders,  and she and her arthropod pals must solve the "Riddle of the Trilobites" before a sea change of epic proportions destroys their home. Created for kids ages six and up and running up minutes, the musical includes humor and eye-popping prehistoric puppetry, and shows how we can leave our mark on the world when we dare to be brave. (The sensory-friendly performance of the show is February 9.) 

Feb. 7-13, various times
Tickets: $17 and up
New Victory Theater
209 W. 42nd St. 
Times Square
646-223-3010
Online: tickets.newvictory.org

photo: MSG

For Familiar Friends on Stage: Sesame Street Live! Let's Party!

Your kid's furry friends are back in town at the Hulu Theater at Madison Square Garden. This time, they're throwing a preschool rager with Sesame Street Live! Let's Party! Expect to learn new songs and sing along to familiar favorites with Oscar and Cookie Monster; build a snowman with Elmo; flap your wings with Big Bird; marvel at Abby’s magic; be amazed when Super Grover flies and move to the rhythm with Rosita. 

Feb. 14-23, multiple showtimes
Tickets: $25-$169
Hulu Theater at Madison Square Garden
4 Penn Plaza
Midtown
Online: sesamestreetlive.com

photo: Story Pirates

For a Fun Show For a Good Cause: The Story Pirates Changemakers Benefit

If you've never seen The Story Pirates, this is the perfect way to catch them! (If you have, you know why they put on one of the most entertaining shows out there.) Story Pirates shows combine improv, humor, song, and most critically, the ideas and words of kids. Best known for their podcast, which tops the family charts and has been downloaded more than 10 million times, Story Pirates is also a leading supporter of arts education, bringing literacy programs into schools and community groups around the country. This special NYC benefit celebration will include Story Pirates “greatest hits,” along with fresh new musical sketch comedy based on ideas from the audience. All five of the Story Pirates Podcast hosts will perform, and you can expect some special fan guests—previous luminaries stopping by to play with the Pirates include Jon Stewart, Rachel Bloom, Conan O'Brien, Eichner and John Oliver. 

March 15, 3 p.m.
Tickets: $35 and up
NYU Skirball 
566 Laguardia Pl.
Greenwich Village 
212-998-4941
Online: tickets.nyu.edu

For the Return of Riverdance: Riverdance 25th Anniversary Show 

It's been 10 years since this Irish phenomenon graced the stage at Radio City Music Hall. For the Riverdance 25th Anniversary Show, composer Bill Whelan has rerecorded the soundtrack, and producer Moya Doherty and director John McColgan have completely reimagined it, with innovative and spectacular lighting, projection, stage and costume designs. This production takes up residence for five days in March—just in time for St. Paddy's Day! 

Mar. 10-15
Tickets: $35-$175
Radio City Music Hall 
Online: msg.com

photo: Jati Lindsay

For Drumming, Dancing & Storytelling: Drumfolk

Washington D.C. company Step Afrika! brings a powerful and energetic show of dance, percussion and song to the New Victory. When Africans lost the right to use their drums, the beats found their way into the body of the people. New percussive art forms took root and made way for tap, beatboxing and the African American tradition of stepping. From hambone to hip-hop, an extraordinary ensemble of dancers, drummers and musicians takes audiences from West Africa to Washington, D.C., to reveal the hidden histories and resounding rhythms that transformed America. Recommended for ages seven and up, the show is one hour and 35 minutes with one intermission. 

Feb. 28-Mar. 15
Tickets: $17 and up
New Victory Theater 
209 West 42nd St.
Times Square
646-223-3010
Online: newvictory.org

photo: City Parks

For an NYC Must-Do: Swedish Cottage Marionette Theatre

The Swedish Cottage Marionette Theatre rolled out a new show in time for the holiday season, and you can still catch it. Yeti, Set, Snow! is the story of a young girl named Widget, and her friend, Twig, who encounter a yeti named Pascetti on the first snow day of the winter season. Unfortunately for Pascetti, who lives on a mountain top nearby, he dislikes the snow. Through songs and snow day activities, he discovers not only that snow can be fun but also the value of friendship.  Get walking directions to the cottage within the park here

Tickets: $8-12
Through Feb. 23
79th St. and West Drive
Central Park
212-988-9093
Online: cityparksfoundation.org

photo: MasterChef Junior Live

To See Kids in the Kitchen: MasterChef Junior Live

You've seen these pint-sized cooks on TV, now check them out live at this interactive show that's touring the country in 2020.  The family-friendly show will feature head-to-head cooking demonstrations and fun—yes, sometimes messy—challenges with past MasterChef Junior contestants, and an overall immersive audience experience fun for all ages. Really love these tiny chefs? You can sign up for a VIP meet-and-greet, signed poster, premium seats and more. 

March 13, 6 p.m.
Tickets: $29.50-$49.50
Kings Theater
1027 Flatbush Ave. 
Flatbush
718-856-5464
Online: kingstheatre.com 

—Mimi O’Connor

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