Whether it is the spectacular sets and show-stopping musical numbers, the jovial jokes and larger-than-life dames, or the custard pies and the chance to cheer the heroes and boo the baddies, everyone loves a good pantomime – and Gloucestershire is a prime place to soak-up the seasonal entertainment.
Every year Cheltenham, the Cotswolds, the Forest of Dean, Gloucester, Stroud and Tewkesbury get in on the family tradition, so you won’t have far to travel for your festive theatrical fix.
Plan a fun family outing with SoGlos’s comprehensive guide to pantos. All together now: ‘He’s behind you!’
Venue: Everyman Theatre
What’s on stage: The Everyman Theatre is granting festive wishes across the county in 2013 and offering a laugh-a-minute evening of family-friendly comedy and sing-a-long songs in Aladdin. Audiences will follow Aladdin on a journey from rags to riches, as he defeats the evil Abanazer and wins the heart of the beautiful princess.
When: From Friday 29 November 2013 to Sunday 12 January 2014
How much: Individual ticket prices range between £12 and £23, while family tickets range between £58 and £68.
SoGlos loves, oh yes we do: Star of last year’s Dick Whittington panto, the mischievous and clumsy Tweedy the Clown will be making a welcome return to the Cheltenham theatre, as well as William Elliot – who is back as Widow Twankey – promising a feast of laughs, thrills and spills, flying carpets, magic tricks and good clean fun and frolics in faraway lands.
For more info: See Aladdin pantomime at Everyman Theatre.
To book: Call Everyman Theatre on (01242) 572573, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit everymantheatre.org.uk directly.
Venue: Bacon Theatre
What’s on stage: Offering the opportunity to cheer the hero and boo the baddie in true panto style, award-winning local theatre company Promenade Productions will be bringing families from Cheltenham and beyond together with a post-Christmas showing of Robin Hood – complete with a hilarious cast of merry men, idiotic henchmen, the evil Sheriff of Nottingham, and of course, the beautiful Maid Marian. Organisers say Robin Hood is a little different to the traditional pantomimes, but locals can expect stunning sets, fabulous costumes, great dance routines, a large cast and plenty of audience participation.
When: Wednesday 22 to Sunday 26 January 2014
How much: Ticket prices range between £8 and £14, or cost £30 for a family of four on selected dates only.
SoGlos loves, oh yes we do: Founded in 1984, Promenade Productions has been delighting audiences young and old for almost 30 years now, and won the 2012 Gloucestershire Theatre Association award for best local pantomime, no less. Its 2013 panto is the perfect chance for families to catch this established local company in action, with mayhem and merriment expected by the bucket load.
For more info: See Robin Hood pantomime at Bacon Theatre.
To book: Call Promenade Productions on (01242) 224144, email email@example.com or visit promenadeproductions.co.uk directly.
Venue: Wall’s Club, Barnwood
What’s on stage: Ahead of its centenary in 2014, the county’s oldest performing arts group, the Gloucestershire Operatic and Dramatic Society, is promising to dazzle panto-loving families with a glittering production of Cinderella; a fairytale which hasn’t been performed in the city for more than 15 years. Romance, comedy, audience participation, colourful staging and a cast to match will all combine in this festive family feast of entertainment, with real white ponies, close-up magic, Punch and Judy and special post-Christmas appearances from Santa himself all set to delight county children. ‘This pantomime has success written all over it’, say organisers, so what better way to celebrate the season with friends and family than to join Cinderella and the cast to discover if she does make to the ball – or if the jealousy of her two terrible TOWIE sisters prevails.
When: Monday 23 December 2013 to Sunday 12 January 2014
How much: Individual tickets cost from £8.50, while tickets for a family of four cost from £45.
SoGlos loves, oh yes we do: The UK’s most fabulous dame, Mr Jerry Lane, makes his long-awaited return to the country to direct and star in this spectacular version of Cinderella. Famed for creating and directing legendary entertainer, Danny La Rue, Lane has worked with famous faces across the globe, from Lynda Bellingham to Lionel Blair, and is promising a groundbreaking, magical show for Gloucestershire families, not forgetting a sensational wardrobe, of course.
For more info: See Cinderella pantomime in Gloucester.
To book: Call the Gloucester Tourist Information Centre on (01452) 396572, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit thegodsgloucester.co.uk.
Venue: Kings Theatre
What’s happening: The talented boys and girls of Starstruck Youth Drama are set to delight Gloucester theatre-goers old and young with a sparkling version of family-favourite panto, Dick Whittington.
When: Thursday 5 to Saturday 7 December 2013
For more info: See Dick Whittington pantomime in Gloucester.
Venue: Kings Theatre
What’s happening: Amateur theatre group, Tyger Productions, will be treating Gloucester families to a traditional pantomime of the enchanting fairytale Sleeping Beauty.
When: Wednesday 18 to Saturday 21 December 2013
For more info: See Sleeping Beauty pantomime at Kings Theatre.
Venue: Stroud Subscription Rooms
What’s on stage: Stroud’s very own Daylight Theatre Company is offering an early Christmas present for panto-loving families across the county, in the form of rags-to-riches tale Dick Whittington. The story of the local legend will be brought to vivid life on the Sub Rooms’ stage, with families being tasked to help Dick defeat King Rat, marry Alice and become the Lord Mayor of London – all while the city is overrun by rats, a thief is at large and Ginger the cat thinks he’s a chicken!
When: Monday 23 and Tuesday 24 December 2013
How much: Tickets cost £8, £6 for concessions and £25 for a family.
SoGlos loves, oh yes we do: Daylight Theatre Company has been entertaining county children for more than 30 years, gaining an enviable reputation for its educational entertainment, elaborate scenery, puppetry and audience participation. And this year, organisers are promising more fun, merriment and adventure than ever before, with Stroud Subscription Rooms providing the perfect setting in which to showcase this established local company.
For more info: See Dick Whittington pantomime in Stroud.
To book: Call Stroud Subscription Rooms on (01453) 760900, email email@example.com or visit subscriptionrooms.org.uk directly.
Little Red Riding Hood
Venue: Slimbridge Village Hall
What's happening: The Slimbridge Variety Showgroup will be performing its own rendition of the classic tale Little Red Riding Hood, written by local parishioner Steve Tilley, which promises to be great fun for all the family.
When: Wednesday 4 to Saturday 7 December 2013
For more info: See Little Red Riding Hood pantomime.
Jack and the Beanstalk
Venue: Cotswold Playhouse
What's happening: The Cotswold Players’ traditional family, post-Christmas panto promises to be a hit with county children thanks to a host of colourful characters, including Dame Foxy Trott and Fairy Lettuce.
When: Tuesday 14 to Saturday 25 January 2014
For more info: See Jack and the Beanstalk pantomime in Stroud.
Jack and the Beanstalk
Venue: Roses Theatre
What’s on stage: Roses Theatre has joined forces with one of the wittiest and most original panto writers around, Ben Crocker, to stage no less than 52 performances of Jack and the Beanstalk this Christmas. Families from far and wide are expected to flock to the popular Tewkesbury theatre to see the enchanting tale of Jack and his magic beans, complete with laughter, slapstick and songs galore, not to mention an amazing 14ft walking, talking animatronic giant that organisers say will have audiences pinned to their seats!
When: From Saturday 30 November 2013 to Saturday 4 January 2014
How much: Individual ticket prices range between £10 and £22, while family tickets cost £58 or £72, depending on the performance time. Group discounts also available.
SoGlos loves, oh yes we do: An early Christmas present will await little ones on Monday 23 and Tuesday 24 December 2013, when Santa himself will be paying the Roses a visit to meet and greet them before the shows.
For more info: See Jack and the Beanstalk at Roses Theatre.
To book: Call Roses Theatre on (01684) 295074, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit rosestheatre.org directly.
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