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The Industry
The cast of the Cinderella pantomime at Wimbledon New Theatre 2023

Image credit: Craig Sugden / Cinderella, Wimbledon New Theatre

A quick look at the variety of pantomimes happening in the UK this festive season

It’s the most wonderful time of the year, and that time is… Panto season! Nothing gets people quite in the mood for Christmas like a bit of audience participation, a comically dressed pantomime dame and a rather large helping of double entendres. 

And with that, we’re saying, “It’s behind you!” to Halloween and diving into some of the exciting pantomimes that will be gracing our stages this winter in the UK: 

‘Peter Pan’

Kicking things off is the famous Palladium pantomime, Peter Pan. The cast of London’s annual festive fanfare is as star-studded as ever, including comedy icon and Spotlight member Jennifer Saunders and Palladium regulars Julian Clary and Spotlight members Nigel Havers, Gary Wilmot and Rob Madge.

Along with the remarkable cast, Peter Pan will see fabulous costumes, wonderful songs and outstanding special effects light up the West End. Come and see the boy who never grows up from 9 December 2023 to 14 January 2024. 

Peter Pan at the London Palladium tickets and dates

‘Jac and the Beanstalk’

West End star and Spotlight member Adam Bailey leads as ‘Jac’ in this exciting adaptation of the famous fairytale. Joining Bailey on stage will be comedy legend and Spotlight member Lesley Joseph as ‘The Spirit of the Beans’ and the famous panto dame, Mike Doyle, as ‘Dame Trot’.

This exciting cast will be shining on the stage of Cardiff’s New Theatre from Saturday 9 December 2023 all the way through the festive season until Sunday 7 January 2024. 

Jac and the Beanstalk at Cardiff New Theatre tickets and dates


Returning to Newcastle Theatre Royal for their 18th panto are comedy legends Clive Webb and Spotlight member Danny Adams, who will be taking on the roles of ‘Geppetto’ and ‘Pinocchio’.

Joining them on stage this Christmas is X Factor star and Spotlight member Joe McElderry as ‘Jiminy Cricket’.

This production marks the premiere of Pinocchio for the Theatre Royal and will open on Tuesday 28 November 2023 until Sunday 14 January 2024. 

Pinocchio at Newcastle Theatre Royal tickets and dates

‘Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs’ 

EastEnders and Strictly Come Dancing star James Bye and TV and Radio presenter Andy Collins star in The Waterside’s panto, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.

A memorable trip to the theatre is guaranteed with all the traditional panto content including hilarious comedic performances, audience participation and fantastic costumes.

Directed by pantomime award winner and Spotlight member Chris Nelson, Aylesbury is sure to have barrels of fun with this festive treat!

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs at Aylesbury Waterside Theatre tickets and dates

‘Jack and the Beanstalk’

Straight off the West End stage in his hugely popular run of The Wizard of Oz, Spotlight member Jason Manford takes to the Manchester Opera House stage as ‘Jack’ in this year’s gigantic panto.

Manford will be joined once again by panto favourite and Spotlight member Ben Nickless as ‘Silly Simon’, with Myra DuBois and Spotlight members Samara Casteallo and Emma Williams accompanying them. 

The brand new production of this classic tale will be lighting up Manchester from Saturday 2 December to Sunday 31 December 2023. 

Jack and the Beanstalk at Manchester Opera House tickets and dates


From the Strictly Come Dancing ballroom to the glamorous stage of the Wimbledon New Theatre, Craig Revel Horwood is taking on the role of ‘the Wicked Stepmother’ in this year’s production of Cinderella.

Horwood will be joined by a hugely talented cast including Spotlight members Cassie Compton as ‘Cinderella’, Pete Firman as ‘Buttons’, Daniel Norford as ‘Dandini’ and the fabulous Alison Jiear as ‘the Fairy Godmother’.

With cheeky innuendos and enough glitter to fill Centre Court, Wimbledon’s Cinderella is sure to be a hit for the whole family from Friday 8 December 2023 to Sunday 7 January 2024. 

Cinderella at Wimbledon New Theatre tickets and dates

‘Peter Pan’

Poirot is moving to panto this year in the Bristol Old Vic production of Peter Pan, where star of the stage and screen drama and Spotlight member David Suchet will take on the role of the iconic villain, ‘Captain Hook’.

Joining Suchet in this exciting production is Steps and Strictly Come Dancing star and Spotlight member Faye Tozer as ‘the Magic Mermaid’ and returning for his 11th panto is Andy Ford as ‘Mr. Smee’.

From Saturday 2 December through to Sunday 31 December 2023, audiences will be able to enjoy the festive frivolities of the Bristol Hippodrome panto. 

Peter Pan at the Bristol Hippodrome tickets and dates

‘Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs’

May McFettridge returns to the Grand Opera House in her record breaking 33rd pantomime dame performance, this year taking on the role of ‘May of the Mirror’.

Joining her on stage in Belfast this festive season is comedian Phil Walker and star of stage and screen and Spotlight member Paddy Jenkins. And if all of that wasn’t enough, Britain’s Got Talent finalists Flawless will dance their way across the stage as ‘The Queen’s Guards’. 

Staged by Olivier award-winning producer Michael Harrison and directed and choreographed by award-winning Graham McClusky, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs is bound to bring Belfast buckets of joy this festive season. 

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs at Grand Opera House Belfast tickets and dates

‘Peter Pan: An Arena Spectacular’

We fly back to Neverland in this next retelling of the beloved tale of the boy who doesn’t want to grow up – only this time this production is going on tour.

Pop star and I’m a Celebrity contestant Boy George takes on the villainous role of evil ‘Captain Hook’ in this exciting new production, touring arenas up and down the country.

Joining Boy George on stage is Real Housewives of Beverly Hills star Dorit Kemsley as ‘The Mermaid’, rising comedy star and Spotlight member Jordan Conway as ‘Peter Pan’ and a cast of 50 others.

From the production company that took Elf: The Musical out on tour last winter, Peter Pan is a high-budget extravaganza and will be stopping off at Winter Gardens Blackpool, M&S Bank Arena Liverpool, Utilita Arena Cardiff, Resort World Arena Birmingham, P&J Live Arena Aberdeen, OVO Hydro Arena Glasgow, Motorpoint Arena Nottingham and finishing off at the Eventim Apollo in Hammersmith.

Peter Pan: An Arena Spectacular tickets and dates

This is just a very small selection of pantomimes taking place up and down the country this festive season. From your big-budget arena tours to your local community theatres, there’s something for everyone… 

Oh no, there isn’t! Oh yes, there is!

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