The nights are drawing in and as the evenings get colder I find myself wondering what theatre will dominate the 2019 Christmas schedules. Christmas for many is the one time of year they go to the theatre, whether it is their local panto or a seasonal West End show.
This is a by no means comprehensive round up of productions, including screen to stage adaptations, pantomimes and other seasonal productions across London and elsewhere
The Churchill Theatre launched their 2019-2020 pantomime Aladdin in September with a Q&A, a cake and a lunchtime buffet. Christopher Biggins stars as Widow Twanky and his Q&A included a great anecdote about working with Cannon and Ball, which resulted in him chasing Bobby Ball. The production has already sold more than 50% of its tickets and it is the centrepiece of the Autumn season
The recently reopened Fairfield Halls launches their pantomime Cinderella later this month starring Ore Oduba making his panto debut and Tim Vine as Buttons
Elsewhere in Outer London and Beyond
New Wimbledon Theatre also have Cinderella, with former Eastenders actress Samantha Womack, Lesley Garrett and Pete Firman
In Richmond Jo Brand in this Wicked Queen in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs http://www.pantomime.com/venues/richmond with Craig Revel Hordwood taking on the role in Manchester and Lesley Joseph taking on the role in Birmingham Southampton has Marti Pellow as Captain Hook in Peter Pan and in Bristol a very smooth looking Shane Richie is Dick Whittington . The star of the panto season is at the London Palladium where an all star cast are in Goldilocks and the Three Bears Full QDOS Entertainment pantomimes for 2019-2020 can be found at http://www.pantomime.com/
If panto isn’t your thing then there are a range of adaptations for the stage. The Bridge Theatre bring Elliott Harper’s critically acclaimed Leeds production of The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe to London. Amelie the Musical, following on from its original run in the Watermill Theatre and UK tour comes to the Other Palace . The launch of the London run acknowledged that in these divided times Amelie is a feel good musical that has an unusual story and a talented actor-muso cast, please see my video below from the event.
At the Old Vic, toilet controversy aside, we have A Christmas Carol for a third year in a row. Paterson Joseph stars as Scrooge, following on from Stephen Tompkinson and Rhys Ifans in previous years. Jack Thorne’s production will also make its Broadway debut . Antic Disposition present their own version in Middle Temple Hall and on Broadway.
At the Young Vic family drama Fairview transfer from New York, Death of a Salesman transfer to the West End. Tower Theatre present a revival of Sam Holcroft’s Rules for Living and an imaginative retelling of Black Beauty comes to the Southbank Centre alongside Circus 1903.
If you are looking for something less seasonal Donmar Theatre presents Teenage Dick, based on Richard III and Gurpreet Kaur Bhatti‘s A Kind of People at the Royal Court offer contemporary and modern plays that may not even mention the C-word.
Whatever your theatrical plans this Christmas I hope you are inspired to see a show and have a lovely time