30 November 2016

Unmissable pantos in Wales this December

It’s that time of year again (oh no, it isn’t!) Children and adults don glittery accessories and come face to face with everyone’s favourite festive tales, not to mention the goodies, the baddies and cheeky pantomime dames.

Whether you like a pre-Christmas trip to the panto or prefer to hold out until the New Year, there’s nothing like the therapeutic wailing, booing and screaming of ‘he’s behind you!’ to unleash the seasonal spirit within. While bigger towns and cities can expect a sprinkling of celebrities, all pantomimes have glamour, glitz, naughty jokes, one-liners and audience participation, not to mention a few contemporary songs and festive carols thrown in for good measure.

Here’s a round-up of some of the pantomimes set to entertain audiences this year in Wales.

Peter Pan

10 Dec 2016 to 7 Jan 2017, New Theatre, Cardiff 

One of the highlights of Cardiff’s festive celebrations: a sparkly celebration featuring David Hasselhoff as ‘Captain Hook’.

Dick Whittington

19 Dec to 24 Dec 2016, Lyric Theatre, Carmarthen - then touring South Wales

Touring Jermin Productions panto - Dick Whittington
Touring Jermin Productions panto - Dick Whittington by Touring Jermin Productions

The rags to riches story of fortune-seeking Dick and his cat has been injected with humour for Jermin Productions’ latest. After Carmarthen, it moves to Gorseinon’s Penyrheol Theatre, Brecon’s Theatr Brycheiniog and Port Talbot’s Princess Royal Theatre.

Cinderella

29 Nov 2016 to 2 Jan 2017, The Riverfront, Newport NP20 1HG

Hiss and Boo Productions brings Cinderella to Newport this Christmas. Let's hope Friars Walk is open for her to buy a new slipper! It's guaranteed to be a laugh, shaking up the traditional story with contemporary music and cheeky references

Beauty and the Beast

25 Nov to 4 Dec 2017, Beaufort Theatre, Blaenau Gwent

A tale as old as time itself, given a kick into the present day by the much loved Welsh comedian Owen Money.

Blaenau Gwent panto - Beauty and the Beast
Blaenau Gwent panto - Beauty and the Beast by Blaenau Gwent Panto

Aladdin - The Wok 'n' Roll Panto

25 Nov 2016 - 21 Jan 2017, Clwyd Theatr Cymru, Mold, Flintshire 

The story of Aladdin’s fight for Princess Jasmine’s love is told through over twenty popular chart-toppers, plenty of outrageous outfits and lots of laughs.

Mold panto - Wok Aladdin
Mold panto - Wok Aladdin by Mold panto

Cinderella

10 Dec to 30 Dec 2016, The Stiwt, Rhosllanerchrugog, Wrexham

Bibbity-bobbity-boo your way into the festive season with this classic pantomime. It features a celebrity appearance from TOWIE’s Ricky Rayment, as well as local favourites Michael Jenkins and Coral Mourant.

Wrexham panto - Ricky Rayment
Wrexham panto - Ricky Rayment by Wrexham panto

Other local gems:

Peter Pan at Rhyl Pavillion features Mark Little (Joe Mangel from Neighbours) and a supporting cast from local groups - the Gay Harris Dancers and North Wales School of Dance (9 Dec 2016 - 7 Jan 2017).

Rhyl panto - Peter Pan
Rhyl panto - Peter Pan by Rhyl panto

Pontypridd Theatre Company presents Cinderella at Pontypridd’s Muni Arts Centre (14 Dec - 17 Dec 2016).

Anvil Productions presents Peter Pan at the Canolfan Ucheldre in Holyhead (12 Dec to 23 Dec 2016).