Amongst the major openings in London - in the West End and further afield - this week are:

OPENING TONIGHT, Monday 16 November 2009 (previews from 5 November), Sadler’s Wells launches a two week long festival of Indian arts and culture called Svapnagata, meaning ‘dreaming’ in Sanskrit. Curated by dancer and choreographer Akram Khan and composer Nitin Sawhney, the festival culminates in the premiere of their new collaboration, entitled Confluence.


OPENING TUESDAY, 17 November (previews from 5 November), Alan Bennett's much-anticipated new play The Habit of Art, centring on the stormy relationship between poet WH Auden and composer Benjamin Britten, opens at the NT Lyttelton (See News, 2 Oct 2009), where it continues in rep until 6 April 2010.

Following the withdrawal of Michael Gambon last month, Richard Griffiths stars as Auden opposite Alex Jennings as Britten. The play - Bennett's first since The History Boys in 2004 - imagines a meeting between the former friends, 25 years after they last saw each other.


OPENING WEDNESDAY, 18 November 2009 (previews from 13 November), Ben Whishaw stars in the premiere of Mike Bartlett's Cock at the Royal Court Theatre Upstairs (See News, 18 Aug 2009). The play examines the categorisations of sexuality and features a young man who must choose between his ex-boyfriend and “the woman of his dreams”. Until 19 December.


OPENING THURSDAY, 19 November 2009 (previews from 17 November), musical comedy sketch show Jest End::L0373244252} comes home to Jermyn Street Theatre for a five-week season, sponsored by Whatsonstage.com (See News, 7 Oct 2009). The Forbidden Broadway-style show, devised and directed by Garry Lake, is given a contemporary twist with regularly updated material parodying the West End’s most popular musicals, from established long-runners to more recent arrivals.


OPENING FRIDAY, 20 November 2009, Toneelgroep Amsterdam presents Roman Tragedies, a six-hour “mutlimedia spectacular” based on Shakespeare's Coriolanus, Julius Caesar and Antony and Cleopatra. Performed in Dutch with English subtitles, it runs for three performances only, as part of Barbicanbite09.