Top 5 theatre openings this week – 16-22 November

From Derren Brown to Ontroerend Goed, it’s an eclectic mix of openings this week

5. Flowering Cherry – Finborough Theatre

Hailed as the British Death of a Salesman, Robert Bolt’s first West End play returns to London 50 years after its premiere.

From the writer of A Man for All Seasons and the screenplays of Doctor Zhivago and Lawrence of Arabia, Flowering Cherry follows the story of fantasist Jim Cherry, who sells insurance but dreams of the day he can quit his job to own an orchard in Somerset.

19 November – 20 December, Finborough Theatre. More information and tickets here.

4. The Body – Barbican

© Ludovic Des Cognets

This year's winner of the Oxford Samuel Beckett Theatre Trust Award, sounds all a little bit wacky. The Body features a cast of dolls and explores what it means to be human.

Nigel Barrett and Louise Mari, who are best known for their work with the experimental theatre collective Shunt, use live sound and video design to create a piece where the audience are linked up to heart monitors.

19 – 29 November, Barbican Centre. More information and tickets here.

3. Derren Brown: Miracle – Palace Theatre

Derren Brown will bring his Miracle to the West End
Derren Brown will bring his Miracle to the West End
© Seamus Ryan

Best known for TV programmes including Mind Control and Trick of the Mind, illusionist Derren Brown returns to the West End following his previous hit stage shows Infamous, Svengali and Enigma.

In our recent interview, Derren told us to expect "a rollercoaster of adrenaline and fun," adding: "sometimes it's dark and scary but it's something that I hope could have a real impact on people's life."

16 November – 16 January 2016, Palace Theatre. More information and tickets here.

2. Are We Not Drawn Onward to New ErA – Theatre Royal Plymouth

The exciting, mischievous, surprising and always challenging Belgian company Ontroerend Goed return to Plymouth with part two of a trilogy following part one: A History of Everything in 2012. Are We Not Drawn Onward to New ErA explore the origins and possible futures of life itself. Like its title, the performance is a palindrome – allowing audiences to see it forwards and backwards.

This will be the only chance to see the show in the UK on its international tour.

17 – 19 November, Theatre Royal Plymouth. More information and tickets here.

1. I Want My Hat Back – Temporary Theatre, National Theatre

With a book and lyrics by Joel Horwood and music from Arthur Darvill (Once, Broadchurch, Dr Who), I Want My Hat Back is a new family show with songs based on Jon Klassen’s 2011 book about a bear who has, you guessed it, lost his hat.

This new stage adaptation is running in the National Theatre's temporary theatre and promises to be 'a treat for everyone aged 3 – 300.'

16 November – 2 January, Temporary Theatre, NT. More information and tickets here.