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The Ultimate Christmas Panto Guide

Home > Birmingham > Christmas | Family | Lists | Theatre
by David Vincent (subscribe)
Occasional blogger and sometimes freelance writer, hammering away in the West Midlands.
Published November 3rd 2015
The very best of what's on offer this season
As the 'season to be jolly' arrives, we highlight some of the biggest and best seasonal performances and pantomimes from in and around Birmingham.

From classic characters and fantasy adventures, to family-friendly and adults only, it's all here in your ultimate guide ... oh yes it is!

The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe
CS Lewis' much loved The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe

Title? The Lion, The Witch And The Wardrobe
When? Friday 20 November 2015 to Saturday 16 January 2016
Where? The Rep Birmingham
Why? Peter, Susan, Edmund and Lucy stumble through a magical wardrobe into Narnia where the evil White Witch has created an eternal winter. Can the children break her spell and reinstate Aslan to his throne? CS Lewis' enduring family adventure.
How much? From 7.50.
More info:

Title? The Gruffalo's Child
When? Thursday 26 November 2015 to Sunday 3 January 2016
Where? Warwick Arts Centre Coventry
Why? Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler's children's classic is bought to the stage by Tall Stories Theatre Company. So cute! A woodland adventure for ages 3 and over.
How much? 14.50
More info:

the nutcracker, brb, birmingham royal ballet
BRB's The Nutcracker.

Title? The Nutcracker
When? Friday 27 November to Sunday 13 December 2015
Where? Birmingham Hippodrome
Why? Birmingham Royal Ballet's Nutcracker is an enduring festive treat that never fails to delight. A classic Christmas tale complete with toy soldiers, a dashing prince and sugar plum fairies.
How much? From 19.
More info:

Title? Vampomime
When? Saturday 5 December 2015 to Saturday 2 January 2016
Where? The Belgrade Theatre Coventry
Why? An alternative adult Xmas comedy offering as a theatre company of vampires struggle to put on a performance of Beauty And The Beast. Virgins in the audience beware ...
How much? From 9.50.
More info:

Title? Santa's Rusty Robot
When? Thursday 10 to Thursday 24 December 2015
Where? The Belgrade Theatre Coventry
Why? A sequel to last year's Santa's Dizzy Day aimed squarely at 2-6 year olds. With songs, presents and a chance to meet Santa!
How much? From 7.25.
More info:

Title? Dirty Grotto
When? Thursday 10 to Friday 19 December 2015
Where? The Door, The Rep, Birmingham
Why? Kiln Ensemble curate a very adult celebration featuring a different line-up each night. Expect drag Queens, divas, comedians (including Andrew O'Neill and Mrs Barbara Nice), cabaret, music and more. Plus optional themed fancy dress each night. Putting the 'X' in 'Xmas'.
How much? 20.
More info:

peter pan, the grand, wolverhampton
The Chuckle Brothers and John Altman star in Peter Pan.

Title? Peter Pan
When? Saturday 12 December 2015 to Sunday 24 January 2017
Where? The Grand Wolverhampton
Why? A swashbuckling adventure to Neverland with comedy duo The Chuckle Brothers ('To me. To you!') and former Eastenders bad boy John 'Nasty Nick' Altman as Captain Hook.
How much? From 17.
More info:

The musical adaptation of John Waters' nostalgic comedy, Hairspray.

Title? Hairspray The Musical
When? Monday 14 December 2015 to Saturday 2 January 2016
Where? New Alexander Theatre Birmingham
Why? The musical adaptation of John Waters' late 80s screen comedy is a kitch spectacular. Tracey Turnblad, a 'big girl with big hair', dreams of dancing her way onto a hit TV show. Staring Freya Sutton, Tony Maudsley (ITV1's Benidorm), Claire Sweeney (Educating Rita, Chicago) and Peter Duncan (Blue Peter). No sign of Santa ... but it's a cracking feel-good show!
How much? From 17.90.
More info:

Title? The Lost Gift
When? Wednesday 16 to Thursday 31 December 2015
Where? The Mead Gallery, Warwick Arts Centre Coventry
Why? An 'interactive, immersive Christmas experience' as children are invited to shape the narrative, solve puzzles and help the characters in a wintery wood. Devised by local physical theatre company Highly Sprung. Ummm...
How much? 12
More info:

barbara nice, janice connolly
Mrs Barbara Nice prepares for Christmas at mac Birmingham.

Title? Barbara Nice's Christmas Cracker
When? Friday 18 to Sunday 20 December 2015
Where? mac Birmingham
Why? Brum's comedy legend, and Kings Heath housewife, catches the No35 bus down to Cannon Hill Park for a seasonal shindig, complete with raffle, tombola and mince pies. Hurrah!
How much? 13.
More info:

Aladdin, Birmingham Hippodrome
Big names and 3D FX are promised for Birmingham Hippodrome's Aladdin.

Title? Aladdin
When? Saturday 19 December 2015 to Sunday 31 January 2016
Where? Birmingham Hippodrome
Why? A star-studded fantasy with Wet Wet Wet's Marti Pellow, comic Julian Clary and Lee Mead which promises 'special effects, a magical 3D flying carpet ride, [and] laugh-out-loud comedy.'
How much? From 26.
More info:

cinderella, paul o'grady, bradley walsh
The 'World's biggest panto' comes to Birmingham's Barclaycard Arena (formerly The NIA).

Title? Cinderella
When? Sunday 20 to Thursday 24 December 2015
Where? Barclaycard Arena Birmingham
Why? Billed as 'The World's Biggest Panto' the cast of over 100 performers includes Bradley Walsh, Paul O'Grady and Dick'n'Dom. With aerial acrobatics and 3D special effects ... and huge crowds!
How much? From 27.70
More info:

And there's more:
Aladdin (11 Dec-3 Jan) and I've Seen Santa (19-24 Dec) at Solihull Arts Complex; Santa's New Sleigh (12-24 Dec) at Lichfield Garrick; A Christmas Carol (15-23 Dec) Old Joint Stock Theatre, Birmingham; and a recreation of the first public reading of Dickens' A Christmas Carol (20 Dec) Town Hall Birmingham.

What Christmas productions are you looking forward to?
Are there any seasonal shows you think we've missed?
Then let us know...
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Why? Tis the season to be jolly!
Where: Birmingham
Cost: Various prices.
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