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Festive shows to catch in the New Year Sale

Kitty Underwood

By Kitty Underwood First Published 9 December 2021, Last Updated 1 January 2022

Once the twelve days of Christmas are up and the tree and lights come down, it’s easy to get stuck in a post-Christmas funk. And you spent so long doing the rounds of family and friends over the festive period that you didn’t have a second to treat yourself!

Well, who says you can’t bask in the Christmas glow a little longer? There are plenty of festive shows that run until the first couple of weeks of January, so if you don’t have time to make it in to Theatreland this December, don’t worry – you can still catch everything from Christmas classics to modern twists on family favourites. And with the New Year Sale you can grab tickets from as little as £10!

Catch a classic British Panto

Panto comes but once a year (oh yes it does!) so you’ve got to grab your chance while you can. So many people’s first memories of theatre are of the chaotic, bright and bawdy classic British pantomime. But whether you’ve been shouting ‘he’s behind you’ every year since you were little or you’ve not been to panto since a shoestring production in your local theatre, it’s guaranteed to unleash that big kid in you.

If you’re looking for your classic pantomime, full of dames, obscenely bright costumes and an all-star cast to boot, then Pantoland At The Palladium is for you. Boasting one of the best line-ups, Julian Clary and Donny Osmond promise to take you on a whirlwind hilarious jounrey, joined by West End favouritres Jac Yarrowe and Sophie Isaacs.

But there are also a couple of fun twists on the London theatre scene this festive season. Comedian, actress and composer Vikki Stone has written a fresh take on Aladdin as her pantomime debut for the Lyric Hammersmith – who have been staging pantomimes for over 125 years! And if you’re looking to cram as much panto in as possible, head to the Garrick Theatre and check out Olivier Award-nominated Potted Panto, which will take you on a madcap ride through all your favourites in just 70 minutes!

A Dickensian hit!

What would Christmas be without A Christmas Carol? Whether you’re a Scrooged fan or a Muppets devotee, you really can’t avoid it this time of year!

Matthew Warchus’ famed production has returned to the Old Vic, this year starring Stephen Mangan as the miserly Scrooge. A beautifully designed and staged version of the classic, it’ll warm the cockles of your heart even in the depths of January. But if you’re looking for something a little more chilling, Mark Gatiss is starring in his own retelling of Dickens’ tale at Alexandra Palace, promising a spine-tingling night at the theatre!

If you’re looking for something even more outside of the box, Cratchit is a re-imagining of the well-loved story from the perspective of the put-upon Bob Cratchit. It turns out, Ebenezer wasn’t the only one visited by spirits that fated Christmas eve… You can catch the world premiere of this new adaptation at the Park Theatre.

Squeeze in a spectacle

Live performance really can take your breath away. It’s not always theatre; the best dance and entertainment shows always have some kind of indescribable ‘wow’ factor. Take Circus 1903 for example; a circus show filled with magic, acrobats, contortionists, trapeze artists, a death-defying high-wire act. Head to the Royal Festival Hall to find all this alongside life-sized elephants created by the puppeteers behind War Horse.

If you’re looking for something more classic, The Snowman is a stalwart of the Peacock, delighting audiences for over 20 years with a beautiful balletic interpretation of the illustrated book of the same name. But that’s not all Sadler’s Wells has to offer – Matthew Bourne’s Nutcracker has the story and the music that you know and love, but turned up to 100 with his bold choreography and bright, stylised costumes.



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