Release the cheese! 14 Pantos & Xmas shows
Pantos are back baby (oh yes they are!). So dig out your stripy tights, false lashes, wiggery and boas, and book in for one of these shows in Gloucestershire and Worcestershire and beyond. Plus WIN a Family ticket to Cinderella!
Jack and the Beanstalk, Everyman Theatre, Cheltenham, 26 Nov – 6 Jan
Starring everyone’s total fave Tweedy the Clown and Darius (him off the TV from ages ago!) the annual Everyman offering promises to be a laugh-a-minute comedy adventure packed with songs, laughs and dazzling special effects.
The Brothers Grimm Present: Cinderella, Barn Theatre, Cirencester, 16 Nov – 02 Jan
Running until 02 Jan, Christmas wouldn’t be Christmas without some magic and laughter and this year’s production of Cinderella is set to be a cracker. The Barn’s 2021 festive treat is penned by Alan Pollock who wrote the Theatre’s sell out hit Christmas Carol, and he’s back with a new adaptation of the Brothers Grimm classic. Expect a tale of kindness, cruelty, music and magic, slippers, pumpkins and wolves. Blending song, illusion and puppetry this production is Christmas theatre Barn style!
Aladdin, Sundial Theatre, Cirencester, 15 – 22 December
Hop on board for a magical carpet ride at the Sundial’s panto. Packed with all of the traditional pantomime ingredients, Aladdin features laugh-out-loud comedy, beautiful costumes and plenty of boos and hisses. Follow Aladdin, his brother Wishee Washee, and of course his mother Widow Twankey, on a spectacular adventure.
Beauty & The Beast, The Sub Rooms, Stroud, 22 Dec – 01 Jan
The enchanting family classic is packed with sing-a-longs, dazzling effects and Christmas magic, and tells the spellbinding story of Belle will unfold as she enters the beast’s castle and melts the heart of the monstrous creature.
The Snowman Live, Cheltenham Town Hall, 23 December
This magical and timeless Christmas classic is a must to see set to live music. Now a regular highlight of Christmas in Cheltenham, the Mozart Symphony Orchestra returns to Cheltenham Town Hall, bringing their famous Christmas show from London for one day only! As the film plays on the big screen the live symphony orchestra provides the soundtrack and 12-year-old Alice Mackenzie sings the aria made famous by Aled Jones.
King Arthur – The Panto!, The Roses Theatre, Tewkesbury, 27 Nov – 31 Dec
This year’s family pantomime, has been specially created for The Roses by Maurice Gran (the BAFTA-winning writer of Birds of a Feather and hit West End musical Dreamboats and Petticoats). Set in Medieval Tewkesbury, King Arthur: The Panto! tells the story of a humble baker boy who is destined for far greater things. Of course, the path to glory is never straightforward and he must overcome the evil Morgana Le Fey plus a host other unexpected foes and obstacles! Expect scones, stones, swords, laughter, dragons, wizards, brave knights, foolish jesters and lots of fun!
Beauty and the Beast, Swan Theatre, Worcester, 30 Nov – 02 Jan
Join the Worcester Repertory Company for a tale as old as time in this spellbinding family pantomime, Beauty and the Beast! A curse is cast on the Prince, causing him to be trapped in a magical castle as a Beast unless he can find love. Belle, an intelligent, confident and beautiful young woman, comes into the Beast’s life offering a chance for the curse to be lifted – but can she see past his beastly exterior and find the true person inside? Packed full of panto treats galore, don’t miss this all-singing, all-dancing spectacular!
And a bit further afield …
Beauty & The Beast, The Hexagon Theatre Reading, 4 Dec – 3 Jan
CBeebies demigod, Justin Fletcher and award-winning Dame, Paul Morse return to the Reading stage as Billy and Nanny Pastry in the Covid postponed Beauty And The Beast. Join Lumière and his pottery pals for a spin round the Beast’s ballroom and enjoy the sizzling on stage chemistry between Justin and Paul. Oh no you won’t! Oh yes you… (sorry, I’ll stop).
Babe The Sheep Pig, Progress Theatre Reading, 8 – 11 Dec
Squeals of excitement! Babe The Sheep Pig is arriving at the Progress Theatre Reading this Christmas. Who can forget the Oscar-winning 1995 film, based on Dick King-Smith’s best-selling book? Now the story of a little pig who dreams big is brought to life by a show full of laughter and live music.
The Snow Queen, Rabble Theatre Reading, 3 – 24 Dec
For a show that’s light on cheese, book The Snow Queen – a new play, written by Anna Wheatley based on the original Hans Christian Andersen story. Set in mid-winter, two besties’ worlds are torn apart when one of them mysteriously disappears and the other is forced to set out on a treacherous journey across Scandinavia to find him. The Rabble Theatre has a fab reputation, so worth booking in.
Jack and the Beanstalk, Stratford Playhouse, 18 Dec-31 Dec
Bean there, done all the other pantos (sorry!) – then this might be the one for you. Head along to Stratford Playhouse to see if Jack can kill the giant and rescue the beautiful Princess.
Goldilocks and the Three Bears, Birmingham Hippodrome, 18 Dec-30 Jan
Jason Donovan makes his pantomime debut as the Evil Ringmaster in the Hippodrome’s festive offering. He’s joined by Eastenders actor Matt Slack, and with sets and costumes straight from the London Palladium, it promises to be a good one. Roll up, roll up!
Pantoland, London Palladium, 4 Dec – 9 Jan
A mash up of all of panto’s best bits, starring American musician Donny Osmond and panto legend Julian Clary. Expect show-stopper songs, coarse comedy, and — well, all the things you’d expect from a great panto, really.
School of Rock, New Theatre Oxford, 13 Dec – 1 Jan
Want a change from the traditional fairytale panto? Mix things up this Christmas with New Theatre Oxford’s head-banging School of Rock – glam rock sequins optional! This is our top pick if you have fussy teens who are ‘way too old, mum, god’ for your classic Mother Goose fare.