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Edinburgh's Festive Shows 2014

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by Lindsay Law (subscribe)
I'm a working mum writing about life in Edinburgh (and anywhere else we go) with two curious, adventurous, and imaginative children. Visit my blog at Follow me on Twitter: @LinzerLaw
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Festive shows for all the family
Going to see a pantomime or Christmas play is a lovely way to get yourself into the mood for the Festive season. And don't think they are all only suitable for children. There are plenty of shows to suit all ages.

As I write in early November, It may seem early to be planning for Christmas shows, but some of the most popular will already be selling out. if you want a seat for those, you'll need to get booking fast (or be willing to compromise a little on where you might be able to sit e.g. splitting up a big group).

Here's my rundown of the top Christmas shows in Edinburgh, and some suggestions of other alternatives if you don't want one with a festive theme.

Stick Man - Live on Stage

Stick Man, Julia Donaldson, alex scheffler
Stick Man - Live on Stage (source: Edinburgh's Christmas)

First up is this adaptation of a book by the much-loved Julia Donaldson, creator of The Gruffalo and Alex Scheffel. Presented by Scamp Theatre, Stick Man - Live on Stage is billed as a fantastic show for all branches of the family tree. It's one of the shorter ones, at only 60 minutes long, and is part of the St. Andrew Square venue of Edinburgh's Christmas. It's therefore perfectly sited to be part of a family day out to the Christmas market.

Venue: St Andrew Square
Dates: 22 November 2014 - 4 January 2015
Ticket Prices: From £13.00 (includes £1 online booking fee)

The Nutcracker

Ballet is my next suggestion. It's a traditional Christmas activity, and none more so than Tchaikovsky's The Nutcracker. From the moment the music starts the theatre is filled with a magic that will delight young and old. However, this is definitely one that you can do without children, and might not be suitable for very young children not used to such a long period of sitting still listening to music.

The Festival Theatre is home to this show, and they have worked with Scottish Ballet to put on a programme of workshops and education events to bring the ballet to life, which can be found on their website.

Venue: Festival Theatre
Dates: 13 December 2014 to 3 January 2015
Ticket Prices: £13 - £42.50


Aladdin, pantomime, Grant Stott
Source: The King's Theatre publicity photos

Another reliable addition to the Edinburgh festive show calendar is the panto at the King's, and this it's Aladdin. This is THE place to go if you are into a good, old-fashioned pantomime replete with dames and damsels, heroes and villains, and some yah-boo-hissing. The panto is very popular and fills up with school and club trips, so do look to book it early if you don't want to be disappointed.

Venue: King's Theatre
Dates: 29 November 2014 to 18 January 2015
Ticket Prices: £14 - £28


BFG, quote, Lyceum
Source: The Lyceum publicity photos

The Lyceum tends to put on less traditionally Christmassy productions, which is great if you don't celebrate the festival yourself, but still want a family show. This year it's an adaptation of a classic Roald Dahl novel: The BFG.

Venue: The Lyceum
Dates: 28 November 2014 – 3 January 2015
Ticket Prices: £11 - £28

The RSNO Christmas Concert: The Snowman

Diverge from the theatre and you can enjoy a family-friendly concert at the Usher Hall. It's only on for one day, Sunday 21 December, and it includes a screening of The Snowman, that beautifully poignant tale of friendship between a snowman and a young boy. This one is great if you are trying to save money, as children under 16 are free.

Venue: Usher Hall
Dates: 21 December 2014
Ticket Prices: £7.50 - £35.00
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Why? A festive show is a lovely way to get your family into the mood for the holidays
Where: Edinburgh
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