With Halloween and Bonfire Night out the way the most wonderful time of the year will soon be upon us! Here’s a quick lowdown of the family-friendly festive fun on offer at Z-arts and across other Big Imaginations Venues in the coming weeks…
Greater Manchester has an excellent Xmas line-up this year! Head on down to Astley Cheetham Gallery for Booster Cushion Theatre’s A Christmas Carol, (Sat 7 Dec) and Portland Basin Museum will be bringing the Christmas Spirit to life with their Christmas Family Day (Sun 8 Dec). Waterside Arts will be hosting Half Moon Theatre’s Glisten ( Thurs 19 – Sun 22 Dec) as they continue on their national tour while slightly older children can be treated to an action-packed production of Mr Popper’s Penguins (Weds 27 Nov – Tues 31 Dec). Z-arts will be kicking off their festive family programme journeying into in Hulme’s past with The Magic Of Christmas Past Extravaganza (Sat 7 Dec) and the team behind Stick Man will be sharing the most exciting wedding in town at The Scarecrow’s Wedding (Weds 11 – Sat 14 Dec). It’s your very last chance to catch the sell-out A World Inside a Book Exhibition and get close-up to the Gruffalo himself at Gruffalo Live! on Friday 20 December and festive favourite Twinkle Twinkle (Fri 20 – Sun 22 Dec) returns for a third visit after two sell-out runs at Z-arts in previous years!
The Dukes will be giving audiences the festive feels with their traditional story with a modern twist, Cinderella: A Fairytale, (Friday 22 November – Saturday 11 January). Up in Clitheroe, Ribcage productions will be serving up a healthy serving of punchy panto with Beauty & The Beast of Clitheroe Castle at the Grand, Clitheroe (Sunday 1 Dec). Snowglobe II: The Next Generation, is an immersive tinsel-time treat for ages 3 – 7 (The Boo, Saturday 7 – Sunday 8 and Saturday 14 – Sunday 15 Dec), while Burnley Youth Theatre are pulling a Christmas Cracker with their own production of Beauty and the Beast (Monday 9 – Saturday 14 Dec) before their Winter Wonderland Family Christmas Disco on Weds 18th Dec. Finally, you can wrap up 2019 with prizes, disco dancing and fancy dress with Mini Me – The Boo’s New Year’s Eve Party, (Tues 31 Dec).
Will Scrooge’s heart thaw in time for Christmas? There’s only one way to find out! The Atkinson present festive favourite A Christmas Carol (Saturday 7 Dec). The Citadel have a great line up of Yuletide vibes with Glisten (Sat 7 Dec) a gentle, sparkling and immersive multi-sensory experience and Little Star (Tues 10 Dec) a delightfully, engaging and captivating performance for ages 6 – 18 months. The Citadel will also be presenting the toddler-tastic Twinkle Twinkle (Sat Dec 14), a beautiful adventure in music and light featuring puppetry, magical interaction and a gorgeous original score with live music-making for all. Rounding up their festive offer, get ready to make some noise and belt out your favourite Christmas tunes as a special Christmas Minifest rolls into St Helens!
Over in Liverpool, award winning theatre company Theatre Rites present Beasty Baby (Tues 10 – Sat 28 Dec) a magical adventure taking 3 – 6 year olds and their families deep into the heart of the forest on a journey featuring puppetry and live music. Southport families have a fun-filled festive singalong to look forward to with The Great Christmas Sleigh Ride (The Atkinson, Fri 13 – Weds 18 Dec) and never fear if you’re lacking Christmas Gift inspiration, the Local Makers’ Christmas Craft Fair is the only stop you’ll need for all your stocking fillers!
Over in Yorkshire, The Lawrence Batley Theatre are taking us to a castle high above Huddersfield for their family show Sleeping Beauty (Fri 6 Dec – Sun 5 Jan), expect spectacular costumes, hit songs, audience participation and a great day out for young and old. For older children and young people looking for a fiercer fairytale, The Krumpus (Weds 11 – Sun 29 Dec) is a slightly more hair-raising Christmas offering, showing that not only are monsters real, but even they have their demons.
Over in Sheffield, Theatre Deli are rocking and rolling into Christmas as Minifest Christmas Special continues its tour of UK (Sun 22 Dec).
So that’s our round up of family friendly festivities in Big Imaginations venues across the region. And if you’re looking for something for grown-ups, have a browse at your local Big Imaginations venue website as there might be something right up your street.
From all of us Z-arts and all the Big Imaginations venues we wish you a lovely festive season and a happy new year!