Scottish Theatre Highlights: December 2019
Watch out, he's behind you! (and no, we don't mean Boris)
The ongoing political pantomime isn't the only entertainment in town this winter. As Christmas approaches, why not check out what's on stage too? And if panto isn't your thing, there's tons of other shows in Scotland to choose from. Whether the result on the 12th is naughty or nice, we've got a shows list you’ll want to check twice...
Glasgow’s got a great selection of family-friendly seasonal shows across the board this month, including Ali The Magic Elf at The Tron (29 Nov-31 Dec), Jack and The Beanstalk at King’s Theatre (30 Nov-5 Jan), and Snow White at the Scottish Exhibition Centre (14-31 Dec). Pinnochio (7 Dec-4 Jan) sounds particularly exciting, brought to the Tramway by the same creative team behind the Citizens' acclaimed productions of Christmas Carol and Hansel and Gretel.
Mother Goose Fae Easterhoose (Platform, 10-23 Dec) stars a Mother Goose described as 'a hard-working, no-nonsense mum from Easterhouse' who is taken 'on a wild ride': sounds like a fun and raucous adventure. The Royal Conservatoire always put on affordable and top-quality shows during the Christmas season, and this year they have Cinderella coming up (RCS, 7-13 Dec). RCS alumni Jack Nurse and Robbie Gordon (the creative duo behind Wonder Fools) will also be bringing their children's show, The Lost Elves, to the Tramway (13-29 Dec). The young company have mainly achieved recognition for plays with serious themes, such as 549: Scots and The Spanish Civil War, so it'll be interesting to see Nurse and Gordon turn their hand to children's theatre.
Just outside of Glasgow, Cumbernauld Theatre is also putting on a production of Cinderella (29 Nov-24 Dec). This will be a particularly special one to catch as it's the company's 'goodbye show' to the old theatre, before they move to North Lanarkshire Council's new Arts Centre building in 2020.
The festive spirit is in full swing in theatres across Edinburgh, too. Check out The Lyceum's An Edinburgh Christmas Carol (28 Dec-4 Jan), Scottish Ballet's production of The Snow Queen (Festival Theatre, 7-29 Dec) and Kings Theatre's circus-inspired panto, Goldilocks and the Three Bears (30 Nov-19 Jan). And what better way to inject a little glamour into a frosty evening than heading to a cabaret in the capital? The Voodoo Rooms are hosting a Festive Frolics Cabaret Show and Dinner (14 Dec), complete with circus, comedy and champagne. In Dundee and Aberdeen, Dundee Rep have programmed Emily Mouse for the tiniest of little ones (0-4 yrs, 2-24 Dec), and The Ice House, playing at Aberdeen's The Lemon Tree (3-22 Dec), sounds equally delightful.
Ah, but what about the Christmas cynics and scrooges of Scotland! Don't worry: we haven't forgotten you. You'll be glad to know that it's not all jingle bells and spins on classic fairytales in theatre this month. For something different away from the Christmas crowds, head to the Traverse in Edinburgh. The world premiere of Strange Tales, created in conjunction with immersive theatre company Grid Iron, will use 'puppetry, movement and cutting-edge digital technology' to tell tales of 'mischevious fox spirits, yearning ghosts and shapeshifting creatures.' Gothic and wintry, yes, but doesn't sound like there'll be a peppermint stick pattern in sight (30 Nov-21 Dec).
The theatre will also be premiering Douglas Maxwell's latest play, I Can Go Anywhere (7-21 Dec). In Glasgow, A Moment's Peace and Küche will present the final edition this year of regular series Shared Space, seeking to raise the creative profile of anyone with lived experience of the immigration system (Tramway, 8 Dec).
So, go forth and be jolly, or if you can't, take your mind off it all with some seriously good theatrical art. See you on the other side!