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WhatsOnStage Awards: Six possible contenders for Theatre Event of the Year

Previous winners of the WhatsOnStage Award for Theatre Event of the Year include ''Les Miserables''' 25th Anniversary Concert and last year’s Olympics Opening Ceremony. With nominations open until the end of November, we look at what could be in the running this year.

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1. The Michael Grandage Company season

During this season of five plays the Noël Coward Theatre has played host to Simon Russell Beale's Privates and David Walliams' Bottom, what more could you ask for? How about superlative performances from Ben Whishaw, Judi Dench and Sheridan Smith, and 100,000 tickets available for just £10?

2. Punchdrunk's return to London with The Drowned Man

A scene from The Drowned Man - A Hollywood Fable

Site-specific specialists Punchdrunk returned to the London theatre scene in dramatic fashion, transforming a vast building next to Paddington Station into the forgotten world of Temple Studios, in what has been described as "A gigantic-mild altering labyrinth".

3. NT Shed's opening on Southbank

The temporary NT Shed stands in front of the National Theatre

Whilst only a temporary venue, The Shed is already an award winner after taking home the Peter Brooke Empty Space award earlier this month and has featured an eclectic mix of productions including The World of Extreme Happiness, Table and The Hush.

4. The Open Court Festival

This summer the Royal Court handed over its keys to playwrights who created the Open Court Festival, featuring play readings by the writers themselves, a theatrical treasure hunt and a rep season which saw the same ensemble perform six plays over six weeks.

5. National Theatre's 50th anniversary gala

Joey the War Horse was a star of the NT 50 gala

To celebrate its 50th anniversary, the National Theatre assembled a star-studded cast including Maggie Smith, Judi Dench and Michael Gambon, who took to the stage in a televised gala performance looking back over 50 years of theatre at the NT.

6. West End Heroes

West End Heroes

The finest military musicians in the country and the best of the West End joined forces for this gala performance which included the casts of War Horse and We Will Rock You, supported by a 50 strong orchestra from the Royal Air Force. The event will return on will return on 22 June 2014.

In such a busy year for theatre many other events could feature in the shortlist including Park Theatre opening two new venues in North London, Jamie Lloyd's Trafalgar Transformed and the announcement of Rufus Norris as the new NT artistic director.

What will you choose as your Theatre Event of the Year? Head over to the awards.whatsonstage.com now to make your nominations - shortlists are announced on 6 December