5. The Rolling Stone - Orange Tree Theatre

The Rolling Stone
The Rolling Stone
© Manuel Harlan

Chris Urch followed his remarkable, smash-hit debut about coal mining The Land of Our Fathers with this play set in Uganda. It won the Bruntwood Prize for Playwriting in 2013 and arrives in London following its premiere at the Royal Exchange in Manchester in April last year. Ellen McDougall directs the critically lauded piece, which tells the story of what it's like to be gay in a country where it is illegal.

18 January - 20 February 2016, Orange Tree Theatre. More information and tickets here.

4. Private Lives - Churchill Theatre, then touring

Private Lives
Private Lives
(© Alastair Muir)

That supremely suave dramatist Noel Coward has his perennial hit comedy Private Lives staged by director Tom Attenborough. Opening in Bromley ahead of a UK tour and West End run, this should be a tantalising first chance to catch the show. Tom Chambers and Laura Rogers lead, with Charlotte Ritchie as Sybil.

19 January - 23 January, Churchill Theatre, Bromley and touring. More information and tickets here.

3. The Weir - Lyceum Theatre

Lucianne McEvoy, Darragh Kelly, Frank McCusker, Brian Gleeson and Gary Lydon in The Weir
Lucianne McEvoy, Darragh Kelly, Frank McCusker, Brian Gleeson and Gary Lydon in The Weir

Irish writer Conor McPherson's haunting, poignant play set in a middle-of-nowhere bar in rural Ireland won the Olivier Award for best new play in 1997 and was recently seen in a riveting production starring Brian Cox in 2013 at the Donmar Warehouse. This time Amanda Gaughan directs the piece, which features rising star Brian Gleeson and Frank McCusker.

20 Jan - 5 Feb - Lyceum Theatre, Edinburgh. More information and tickets here.

2. The Picture of Dorian Gray - Trafalgar Studios

The Picture of Dorian Gray''
The Picture of Dorian Gray

The grandson of debutante Oscar Wilde has created a brand new adaptation of The Picture of Dorian Gray with European Arts Company. The production marks the 125th anniversary of the publication of Wilde's gothic novella The Picture of Dorian Gray and stars Guy Warren-Thomas and John Gorick.

20 January - 13 February, Trafalgar Studios. More information and tickets here.

1. Herons - Lyric Hammersmith

Billy Matthews as Scott in Herons rehearsals
Billy Matthews as Scott in Herons rehearsals

Simon Stephens' controversial play is being revived at the Lyric Hammersmith in west London by Sean Holmes. It's a troubling, disturbing portrait of adolescent violence through the story of Billy who is bullied. Don't come looking for frothy entertainment, expect instead to be knocked sideways by its power.

21 January - 13 February - Lyric Hammersmith. More information and tickets here.