No Christmas is complete without a trip to the theatre and a few shouts of ‘he’s behind you’.
A great way for the family to spend time together, a pantomime is guaranteed to get everyone laughing and joining in with a good old sing-song at the end.
Here’s a list of pantos taking place across Scotland this festive season...
Beauty And The Beast
River City’s Joyce Falconer, Call The Midwife’s Laura Main and local actress Danielle Jam are among the stars of this classic pantomime about a cursed castle, a mean enchantress and a monster with hidden depths. The 2017 movie has transported some of the story’s magic into screens both large and small, but there’s nothing quite like seeing this 18th century French fairytale brought to vivid life on stage.
His Majesty’s Theatre, Aberdeen, Sat 4 December–Sun 2 January
There will be a note of melancholy around this year’s Edinburgh King’s panto for two reasons. This will be the first production where Grant Stott and Allan Stewart won’t be joined by Andy Gray who sadly passed away earlier this year. And this Sleeping Beauty will be the last panto for a while in this venue as work commences next autumn on a major transformation. But for now, the show will go on with Jordan Young and Nicola Meehan joining the team for this puntastic and joke-filled extravaganza where the gags are just as amusing for the grown-ups as they are for the kids.
King’s Theatre, Edinburgh, Sat 27 November–Sun 16 January
A Christmas Carol
Dundee Rep and musical-theatre writers Noisemaker join forces for a witty re-telling of Charles Dickens’ timeless seasonal story. The ghosts of three very different Christmases as well as Scrooge’s old business partner Jacob Marley come together with a brand new score and a sterling cast which features Rep regulars Irene Macdougall, Ann Louise Ross and Emily Winter.
Dundee Rep Theatre, Sat 27 November–Fri 31 December
Olive The Other Reindeer
Based on the 1997 book by J Otto Seibold, this production is penned by the Tron’s resident panto writer Johnny McKnight. Olive is desperate to be one of the reindeer gang but first she has to pass her exams. When she discovers that a Naughty List exists naming children who have been deemed undeserving of presents, Olive is even more determined to join up with Rudolph and co to ensure everyone has a slice of Christmas cheer.
Tron Theatre, Glasgow, Tue 14–Fri 24 December
Scottish Ballet’s The Nutcracker
With choreography from Scottish Ballet founder Peter Darrell and Tchaikovsky’s score played live by the Scottish Ballet Orchestra, there’s no better way to consume this landmark work over the festive period. The story follows Clara on a journey through her imagination as she drifts off to sleep on Christmas Eve. On that trip she meets the dashing Nutcracker Prince and is whisked off into a land of sweets by the Sugar Plum Fairy.
Festival Theatre, Edinburgh, Wed 1–Fri 31 December
The classic fairytale of glass slippers, a midnight pumpkin threat, Buttons, Prince Charming, and a pair of devious sisters is a popular one indeed for 2021. Among the many upcoming festive adaptations of this ‘Fairy Godmother of all pantos’ are the Glasgow version with Elaine C Smith and Johnny Mac, and Perth’s Cinders which features Betty Valencia in the title role and Lewis Winter Petrie as both Buttons and the Prince, while Inverness’ take promises side-splitting slapstick and spectacular special effects.
King’s Theatre, Glasgow, Sat 27 November–Sun 2 January
Eden Court Theatre, Inverness, Fri 10 December–Sat 8 January
Perth Theatre, Fri 26 November–Fri 31 December
Fancy finding out what else is on across Scotland this Christmas? Click here to find out 'what's on' this festive period in our latest Christmas blog.