Our local theatres have had such a difficult time over the last 18 months, but many are back and have an amazing programme of family shows in the run up to Christmas. Here are some of my favourites.
The Magician’s Elephant – A New Musical - 14 October – 1 January - The Royal Shakespeare Theatre
Baltese is a town where nothing extraordinary ever happens. Recovering from a recent war, it’s a lonely place, where young Peter lives a harsh life. This brand new musical for all the family reminds us all that even the impossible can be possible when we open our eyes and hearts to those around us.
Gangsta Granny - 20 – 23 October - The Alexandra Theatre
It’s Friday night and Ben knows that means only one thing – staying with Granny! There will be cabbage soup, cabbage pie and cabbage cake and Ben knows one thing for sure – it’s going to be sooooooooo boring! But what Ben doesn’t know is that Granny has a secret – and Friday nights are about to get more exciting than he could ever imagine, as he embarks on the adventure of a lifetime with his very own Gangsta Granny!
Nobody - 22 – 25 October - Midlands Art Centre
Fast-moving and highly physical, Nobody explores the tension between our inner lives and how we make sense of the world around us.
The Amazing Bubble Man - 23 October - The Albany Theatre
Louis Pearl has been thrilling audiences around the world for over 30 years with the art, magic, science and fun of bubbles! He is a favourite at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, where he has enjoyed twelve years of sell-out success.
The Tiger who came to Tea - 26 – 28 October - Warwick Arts Centre
Direct from the West End, the Olivier Award nominated smash hit show, The Tiger Who Came to Tea returns on tour, celebrating over 10 years on stage! The doorbell rings just as Sophie and her mummy are sitting down to tea. Who could it possibly be? What they certainly don’t expect to see at the door is a big, stripy tiger!
Elf The Musical - 10 – 13 November - The Albany Theatre
Elf is the hilarious tale of Buddy, a young orphan, who mistakenly crawls into Santa’s bag of gifts and is transported to the North Pole. The would-be elf is raised, unaware that he is actually a human until enormous size and poor toy-making abilities cause him to face the truth.
Bedknobs and Broomsticks - 10 – 14 November - The Alexandra Theatre
Enter a world of magic and fantasy as Disney’s classic movie Bedknobs and Broomsticks makes its world premiere as an exciting new musical.
One Snowy Night - 16 November – 28 December - Midlands Art Centre
The charming stage adaptation of Nick Butterworth's best selling book, featuring Percy the Park Keeper. As Percy goes to sleep after a hard day sweeping leaves, he’s woken by a knock at his door. Who could it be on a night like this? A snuggly, heart-warming story, with songs to sing along to, furry puppet friends to meet and blankets to be tucked up in, One Snowy Night is great fun for younger children!
Alice In Wonderland - 20 November – 17 December - The Old Rep Theatre
Join us on a magical adventure at The Old Rep this festive season. This adaptation of Lewis Carroll’s classic tale follows the story of Alice, a young, curious girl who follows a white rabbit down a rabbit hole and into Wonderland.
The Nutcracker - 20 November – 11 December - Birmingham Hippodrome
The show opens on a wintry soundscape; the Dickensian tones of Simon Callow as Drosselmeyer echo across the auditorium as he introduces the enchanting tale to our captivated audiences. The toyshop, the Stahlbaums’ beautifully decorated Christmas tree, and King Rat’s scary midnight world where he battles the Nutcracker doll are all brought vividly to life by Set Designer Dick Bird’s wall of mirrors, with beautiful projections by award-winning 59 Productions.
Beauty and the Beast - 24 November – 8 January - Belgrade Theatre, Coventry
This year we present the enchanting tale of Beauty and the Beast. One of the most popular panto titles ever, this long awaited production will be extra special and guaranteed to bring a touch of magic, mayhem and monstrous fun to your festive celebrations.
The Snow Queen - 26 November - The Albany Theatre
Join Ballet Theatre UK in their beautiful re-telling of Hans Christian Andersen’s classic fairy tale ballet, The Snow Queen.
Horrible Histories – Barmy Britain - 1 – 4 December - The Alexandra Theatre
We all want to meet people from history. The trouble is everyone is dead! So it’s time to prepare yourselves for Horrible Histories live on stage with this special production of Barmy Britain!
A Christmas Carol - 4 December - The Albany Theatre
The perfect family-friendly alternative to a traditional panto. Delve into Charles Dickens’ timeless Christmas classic this Winter as it jumps from page to stage brimming with heart-warming merriment and Victorian charm.
Santa’s Magical Mystery Guest - 9 – 24 December - Belgrade Theatre, Coventry
Santa, Ellie and Rudolph are getting ready for the big night. One of their presents is a magic cabinet which mysteriously conjures up a pirate who seems to be lost. With lots of Christmas songs to sing along with and tons of magic and festive cheer, come and see if Santa can help our Pirate finds his way home in time for the big day.
Dear Santa - 15 – 24 December - Birmingham Hippodrome
Santa is determined to deliver the most fantastic Christmas present to Sarah, but he doesn’t get it right straight away! With the help of his cheeky Elf, he finally settles on something ‘perfect’, just in time for Christmas Eve.
The Very Hungry Caterpillar Christmas Show - 8 – 24 December - Warwick Arts Centre
Dive into Eric Carle’s bright and colourful world as his beloved stories are transformed from page to stage, using a menagerie of 75 lovable puppets and charming music.
Goldilocks and the Three Bears - 18 December – 30 January - Birmingham Hippodrome
Actor, singer and much-loved personality Jason Donovan will make his pantomime debut as The Evil Ringmaster in Goldilocks and the Three Bears here at Birmingham Hippodrome alongside previously announced Birmingham panto favourite Matt Slack.
Stick Man - 26 December – 9 January - Town Hall, Birmingham
Touching, funny and utterly original, Freckle Productions’ delightful adaptation of Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler’s Stick Man is back in town!
The Snowman - 6 – 9 January - Birmingham Repertory Theatre
When a young boy’s snowman comes to life on Christmas Eve, the two set off on a night-time quest for adventure. They meet Father Christmas, dancing penguins, reindeer and crowds of The Snowman’s friends, but will they escape evil Jack Frost and get back home for Christmas morning? This much loved classic is back on The Rep’s stage!
Local Mum of two boys and editor of Raring2go! in Solihull and South Warwickshire.