It's Showtime! Panto, Christmas and Winter Theatre for Families in Dorset

Christmas and Winter Theatre and Panto for Families in Dorset 2023

We have pulled together a selection of the finest family theatre, including pantos,  that families can expect to see across Dorset for November 2023 through to January 2024.

 

Updated 2/11/2023

Featured Christmas and winter family theatre in Dorset including pantomimes 2023/early 2024

 

 

Bournemouth Pavilion  www.bournemouthpavilion.co.uk

2nd to 31st December

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs

Join Bournemouth Pavilion for the greatest magical pantomime ever told this December, starring Su Pollard as the Wicked Queen! Bursting with great songs and plenty of laughter, and with a beautiful princess, a jealous Wicked Queen, seven bumbling dwarfs, a naughty nurse, a hilarious jester and not forgetting a poisoned apple and a magic mirror, it’s not to be missed. Heigh-Ho… Heigh-Ho… It's off to Bournemouth Pavilion's panto we go!

Find out more and book at www.bournemouthpavilion.co.uk/

 

Lighthouse Poole - www.lighthousepoole.co.uk

 

5th to 24th December

The Three Little Pigs

There’s a wolf coming… But for now, The Three Little Pigs have tricked him onto a bus. If he catches them, he’ll huff and he’ll puff and we all know how that ends…

On the run and with the need to build a strong shelter the three problem-solving pigs call on you to save their bacon. Be blown away by the world of Stuff and Nonsense in this joyful retelling of a classic tale. Told in a unique physical style with raucous puppets, this is high-octane family theatre that will make you howl!

Suitable for all the family (recommended for ages 3-10).

 

7th to 31st December

Aladdin

Take a magical carpet ride with this year’s family pantomime, Aladdin. A fairytale of true love, magical wishes and a treasure trove of festive fun that’s simply Genie-us.  

Starring Melinda Messenger as Spirit of the Ring (Channel 4’s Celebrity SAS), Ionica Adriana as Princess Jasmine (BBC’s All Together Now) and Benjamin Armstrong as Aladdin (West End actor and panto debut).

The amazing Andrew Pollard and Alim Jadavji, who played Nadine & Doris in Cinderella last year and won Best Sisters at the 22/23 UK Pantomime Awards, are coming back, as is panto supremo and CBeebies favourite Chris Jarvis who will be appearing as Widow Twankey as well as writing and directing the show.

Produced by Lighthouse, the creative team who brought you Beauty & the Beast and Cinderella, which was nominated for Best Pantomime in the 2022/23 UK Pantomime Awards.  With breathtaking special effects by Production Designer, James Smith and pop hits expertly executed by Musical Supervisor Darren Reeves, Aladdin promises to be another high-flying traditional pantomime with a lamp-load of laughter, stunning scenery and beautiful costumes – it will be all you ever wished for.  

Audio Described Performances: Thursday 14 December at 6pm and Wednesday 27 December at 6pm                                        BSL Performance: Thursday 14 December at 6pm and Wednesday 27 December at 2pm                                                        Captioned Performances: Wednesday 27 December at 6pm

 

9th December

Films and Fun: How the Grinch Stole Christmas (PG)

On the outskirts of Whoville lives a green, revenge-seeking Grinch who plans to ruin Christmas for all of the citizens of the town.

Enjoy the film screening at 10.30am, followed by a free themed crafting session run by the team, to include light refreshments for everyone.

 

10th February 2024

The Amazing Bubbleman

Louis Pearl has been thrilling audiences around the world for over 30 years with the art, magic, science and fun of bubbles. He is a favourite at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, where he has enjoyed twelve years of sell-out success.

Louis explores the breath-taking dynamics of bubbles, combining comedy and artistry with audience participation and enough spellbinding bubble tricks to keep everyone mesmerized. From square bubbles, bubbles inside bubbles, fog-filled bubbles, giant bubbles, bubble volcanoes, tornados and trampolines to people inside bubbles, the Amazing Bubble Man conjures shrieks of laughter and gasps of amazement from all ages.

Most shows will also feature multi instrumentalist Jet Black Pearl accompanying Louis with bubbly music to double your pleasure.

 

16th February 2024

Mark Thompson’s Spectacular Science Show

You think science is boring, think again; this is science like you have never seen it before.

Designed for children and adults alike, Mark’s Spectacular Science Show explores the strange and magical properties of matter with exploding elephant’s toothpaste, vortex-generating dustbins and even howling jelly babies!

 

 

Pavilion Dance South West

www.pdsw.org.uk

2nd December

Walt Disney’s Frozen Sing-A-Long Cinema Screening

Back by popular demand!

Join in for a fabulous singalong version of this classic film, and belt out your favourite Frozen songs with your friends and family. You can completely Let It Go!

Fearless optimist Anna sets off on an epic journey, teaming up with rugged mountain man Kristoff and his loyal reindeer Sven to find her sister Elsa, whose icy powers have trapped the kingdom of Arendelle in eternal winter. Encountering Everest-like conditions, mystical trolls and a hilarious snowman named Olaf, Anna and Kristoff battle the elements in a race to save the kingdom.

Fancy dress is encouraged, so feel free to come along dressed up as your favourite character from the film!

 

16th to 18th December

Advent Adventure

A fun, festive family feast of dance, theatrical storytelling and acrobatics, ‘Advent Adventure’ is an interactive, delightful experience for all the family.

During this fun packed hour, Olivia and Claire will lead a fun and festive creative movement workshop that offers everyone a chance to learn moves and tricks that will later be magically woven into a short performance.

Split into two parts, the audience will follow an inclusive workshop, followed by an interactive performance based around an Advent door. You can decide to join in and be ‘freeze frame extras’ in these fantastical short stories or just sit back and enjoy the festive action.

Christmas books to share and crafting available in our foyer from Monday 12 -22 December. On both show days, come early to make your very own Christmas prop to use during the performance!

This is an experience you and your little bundles of Christmas joy do not want to miss!

.

 

Shaftesbury Arts Centre

www.shaftestburyartscentre.org

 

24th November

West End to Broadway

A fabulous evening of songs from the shows! From My Fair Lady to Hamilton, there is something for everyone in this musical extravaganza.

Featuring professional performers including the Belle Street Duo alongside our incredible local cast of adults and children.

 

 

 

20th December

Santa’s Christmas Wish

Christmas is a season of joy, love and sharing, a time when Santa delivers presents all over the world… but what would Santa himself like for Christmas?

Dasher the Reindeer has an idea… Pompom the Penguin thinks he knows… Or maybe Snowy the Snowman has the answer..? Dotty the Elf needs all their help – and yours – to find out!

Join a fun, festive, musical adventure to give Santa the very best Christmas,
then meet him at his home in the North Pole! There, every child will receive a special present from Father Christmas in our popular meet, greet and treat, after the most Christmassy Christmas show ever!

Songs include festive favourites such as Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, Jingle Bells, When Santa Got Stuck Up the Chimney, The Twelve Days of Christmas, We Wish You a Merry Christmas and many more!

Santa’s Christmas Wish is a festive, song-filled, interactive family show particularly suitable for 2 to 8-year-olds. It lasts 45 minutes and is followed by a special meet, greet and treat with Father Christmas himself!

 

Tivoli Theatre

www.tivoliwimborne.co.uk

 

15th December to 1st January

Cinderella

Following the huge successes of ALADDIN and SLEEPING BEAUTY, Made to Measure Productions returns to the Tivoli Theatre in 2023 with a brand-new sparkling production of CINDERELLA!

Set in a magical Winter Wonderland, the most magical pantomime of them all follows our heroine, the beautiful Cinderella on a mission to make her dreams come true as she heads off to the Royal Ball to meet her very own Prince Charming! But not everything will go quite to plan as her wicked Ugly Sisters have more than a few tricks up their sleeves to prevent poor Cinderella from getting her ‘Happy Ever After’!

No need to fear though, her HILARIOUS best friend Buttons is always on hand to cheer her up, and with a sprinkle of sparkle, her magical Fairy Godmother will ensure that she gets to the Royal Ball in style, thanks to a SPECTACULAR transformation sequence specifically designed for this brand-new pantomime!

Featuring stunning scenery, colourful costumes, toe-tapping tunes, hilarious comedy and INCREDIBLE West End special effects, CINDERELLA is set to be the BIGGEST pantomime Wimborne has ever seen!

Cinderella ‘Shall Go To The Ball!’ – and so will you…but book your seats quickly as the Tivoli panto has become known as the best value and most SPECTACULAR festive production in Dorset!

 

 

 

Other Christmas and Winter Family Theatre Shows

 

Weymouth Pavilion

www.weymouthpavilion.com

 

15th to 18th November

Oliver!

WOW’s award-winning group is thrilled to present the 2009 West End version of Oliver! This musical adaptation of the classic Dickens novel features some of the most memorable characters and songs ever to hit the stage.

The streets of Victorian England come to life as Oliver, a hungry orphan in a workhouse, becomes the neglected apprentice of an undertaker. Oliver escapes to London and finds acceptance amongst a group of pickpockets led by the elderly Fagin. When Oliver is captured for a theft that he did not commit, the benevolent victim, Mr. Brownlow takes him in. Fearing the safety of his hideout, Fagin employs the sinister Bill Sikes and the sympathetic Nancy to kidnap him back, threatening Oliver’s chances of discovering the true love of a family.

 

16th to 31st December

Snow White and The Seven Dwarfs

Welcome to the most magical pantomime ever told, where poor Snow White is doomed to live UN-happily ever after...with her horrid stepmother the Wicked Queen.

Starring Britain's Got Talent winner GEORGE SAMPSON as the Prince and JAMIE RIDING as the Dame!

From the same team behind previous hilarious Weymouth pantos Sleeping Beauty, The Wizard of Oz and Rapunzel, Weymouth Pavilion has once again teamed up with Enchanted Entertainment to bring you the region's biggest Christmas show!

In a true rags to riches story Snow White manages, with the help of her madcap friend Muddles the Jester, to meet a handsome Prince and make all her dreams come true. A pantomime full of excitement, including a Good Fairy, a Magic Mirror and the craziest Seven Dwarfs you've ever seen!

So come and join in the festive fun as Weymouth Pavilion and Enchanted Entertainment bring the world's best-known and most loved pantomime to life. A show bursting with great songs, fantastic dance routines and plenty of laughter, this is a tremendous treat for all the family you won't want to miss.

 

 

Marine Theatre

www.marinetheatre.com

 

4th December

Santa’s Christmas Wish

What would Santa love for Christmas? Join the adventure to grant his secret wish, then meet Santa after and receive a special present!  

Christmas is a season of joy, love and sharing, a time when Santa delivers presents all over the world… but what would Santa himself like for Christmas?Dasher the Reindeer has an idea… Pompom the Penguin thinks he knows… Or maybe Snowy the Snowman has the answer?

Dotty the Elf needs all their help – and yours – to find out!

Join a fun, festive, musical adventure to give Santa the very best Christmas, then meet him at his home in the North Pole! There every child will receive a special present from Father Christmas in our popular meet, greet and treat, after the most Christmassy Christmas show ever – HO-HO-HO!Songs include festive favourites – Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, Jingle Bells, When Santa Got Stuck Up The Chimney, The Twelve Days Of Christmas, We Wish You A Merry Christmas and many more!”

Santa’s Christmas Wish is a festive, song-filled, interactive family show particularly suitable for 2-8 year olds. It lasts 45 minutes and is followed by a special meet, greet and treat with Father Christmas himself!

 

The Mowlem

www.themowlem.com
 

19th December

Santa’s Christmas Wish

What would Santa love for Christmas? Join the adventure to grant his secret wish, then meet Santa after and receive a special present!  

Christmas is a season of joy, love and sharing, a time when Santa delivers presents all over the world… but what would Santa himself like for Christmas?Dasher the Reindeer has an idea… Pompom the Penguin thinks he knows… Or maybe Snowy the Snowman has the answer?

Dotty the Elf needs all their help – and yours – to find out!

Join a fun, festive, musical adventure to give Santa the very best Christmas, then meet him at his home in the North Pole! There every child will receive a special present from Father Christmas in our popular meet, greet and treat, after the most Christmassy Christmas show ever – HO-HO-HO!Songs include festive favourites – Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, Jingle Bells, When Santa Got Stuck Up The Chimney, The Twelve Days Of Christmas, We Wish You A Merry Christmas and many more!”

Santa’s Christmas Wish is a festive, song-filled, interactive family show particularly suitable for 2-8 year olds. It lasts 45 minutes and is followed by a special meet, greet and treat with Father Christmas himself!

 

Dates from 12th January 2024

Cinderella

Join in for Swanage Drama Company's annual family pantomime 'Cinderella' - this year co-directed by Victoria Jones and Brian Travers. Will Cinderella get to the Ball or do her Wicked Stepmother and her two stepsisters ruin her chances? Will Buttons and Baron Hardup be able to help? Can Prince Charming meet the girl of his dreams - with, or without, Dandini's assiatance?  And just who is the mysterious Fairy Godmother?

Go along and find out all the answers - and cheer, boo and see a host of local talent bring this story to life, with a script by Brian Travers, in Swanage Drama Company's own unique style and fashion!!!

 

 

The Regent Centre

www.regentcentre.co.uk

 

Dates from 16th December 2023

Christmas Spectacular

How does Santa deliver presents to every child across the whole world in one night? Time travel of course!

But when something goes wrong with Santa’s Time Machine, Christmas could be no more...

Join Squash the Christmas Elf and Santa’s only daughter Joy as they travel through time to save Santa!

Will they save Christmas in the nick of time? Will Squash find a new way to make the whole audience jingle their bells? There’s only one way to find out!

With dazzling costumes, sensational dance routines and enough Christmas magic to make your whole family feel warm and fuzzy inside, this years Christmas Spectacular is not to be missed.

 

26th to 28th January 2024

Robin Hood

Highcliffe Charity Players proudly presents Robin Hood, a spellbinding pantomime that will transport you into a world of enchantment and laughter!

Embark on a thrilling journey filled with adventure and mischief as Robin Hood takes on the notorious Sheriff of Nottingham. Will our fearless hero and his mischievous companions triumph over the Sheriff's wicked schemes?

With dazzling costumes, toe-tapping music and rib-tickling humour, this one-act pantomime by Tom Whalley Pantomimes promises entertainment for the whole family.

Support a great cause while enjoying top-notch entertainment. HCP are dedicated to giving back to the community, with profits being donated to help those in need.

 

Bournemouth International Centre

www.bic.co.uk

 

15th and 16th December

Elf: The Musical

Elf, the hit Hollywood blockbuster movie has been supersized into a live arena spectacular for this Christmas with a massive stage featuring amazing film backdrops on a huge LED screen plus a mobile stage that travels the auditorium, so everyone gets a close-up view of the action.

The presentation features Santa’s flying sleigh, audience snowball fight, indoor snowstorm, a giant candy cane journey from the North Pole, aerial cirque stars and giant tv screens so you don’t miss any of the spectacle.

The story is hilariously recreated by a large cast of performers into the biggest live Christmas show in the UK. The festive spectacular will feature West End star Steven Serlin stepping into the big floppy shoes of Will Ferrell to play Buddy the Elf.

The cast also features ‘Birds Of A Feather’ comedy actor Charlie Quirke as Buddy’s New York pal, Charlotte Hall as JovieBuddy’s love interest and Barry Bloxham as Buddy’s long suffering dad.

This Christmas Spectacular production features a book written by Bob Martin and Thomas Meehan (Annie, The Producers and Hairspray) and an original score of great songs by Matt Sklar and Chad Beguelin that has delighted audiences on Broadway and the West End.

 

 

Bridport Arts Centre

www.bridport-arts.com

 

17th December

A Winter’s Tail

Bridport Arts Centre. www.bridport-arts.com

The snow is falling and the solstice is approaching. Ratty is getting ready. She wants everything to be really rat-tastic! But will her friends make it through the snow to the winter woodland revels?

Can you help them on their journey? There’ll be excitement, adventure, play-acting, games, music, a splattering of silliness and lots of snow!

Led by Sidney & Tristan from The Last Baguette, A Winter’s Tail is a fun, relaxed play-along theatre adventure. Expect to play, move, watch and laugh.

The show lasts 1 hour including a stay and play session, and is created for ages 2+ and their grown-ups. Younger and older siblings welcome!

 

19th December

The Christmassy Christmas Show of Christmassy Christmasness

This festive show from Squashbox Theatre is a celebration of everything Christmassy, from fir trees, fairy lights, sleigh bells and snowflakes to crackers, carols, presents and puddings!

Try and spot some naughty elves, meet a wise-cracking snowman, say hello to an over-excited Christmas puppy, endure the world’s worst Christmas jumper, join the hunt for the magical Twelve Sprouts of Christmas and gaze in awe at the “beautiful” Christmas tree fairy…

‘The Christmassy Christmas Show of Christmassy Christmasness!’ is an over-stuffed stocking of seasonal surprises crammed with puppets, songs and comedy, and over-flowing with crazy characters, silly slapstick, tall tales and fantastic facts – all presented in that unique Squashbox style!

 

Dorchester Arts/Dorchester Corn Exchange

www.dorchesterarts.org.uk

 

9th December

Snow Play

“What would you do if one year Winter moved into your house? Well, that’s what happens in this snowy spectacular show, where you are guaranteed a white Christmas, no matter what the weather!

Snow Play is a showdown between Winter and Spring over who gets to stay and who must go away. So please come and help Mr Green against Mr White in this highly interactive smash-hit production. You get to make a giant snowman, cover a whole house in snow and have a super snowball fight!

‘A fantastic, utterly enchanting show…children (and adults) will be captivated. (Evening Standard)

 

 

Artsreach

www.artsreach.co.uk

 

8th December – West Stafford Village Hall, Dorchester

9th December – Burton Bradstock Village Hall, Bridport

The Merry Adventures of Robin Hood

Can Robin and his barmy band of brigands save the poor people of the Forest from the scheming Sheriff? Can they thwart his greedy plans? Can they find a way to level up? And can Robin right the wrongs, with mischief and merriment, without getting into a terrible mess? Who will he meet in the woods? Come see for yourself!

With quirky storytelling, merriment and mischief, the Travelling Players present a stout-hearted tale of epic proportions. Expect a great deal of swashbuckling, a number of ridiculous fights and some improbable archery. With live music, puppets and far too many trees, this co-production with Bumblefly, Forest Forge and Mischievous Theatre will hit the target this festive season.

Suitable 5+

 

Poole High School Theatre

www.tinyrul.com/80dayspanto

 

24th and 25th November

Around The World In 80 Days – The Panto

 

Pack your imagination and dive into a whirlwind adventure! Join Philias Fogg and a colourful cast in a panto race against time.

Hold onto your hats, adventure enthusiasts and panto lovers! The Zenith Theatre Company presents an exhilarating reimagining of the classic tale featuring the daring Phileas Fogg! Join him as he endeavours to traverse the globe in precisely 80 days.

Lurking in the shadows is the scheming bank manager, Grimsworthy! With a mind full of plots and a heart set on Fogg’s fortune, he’s out to make Fogg’s journey anything but smooth. Will Fogg prevail, or will Grimsworthy manage to foil his plans and seize his fortune?

This tale of adventure and scheming, courage and cunning, is a must-see spectacle for the whole family. Don't miss out!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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