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South West

Beneath The Blizzard – The Bike Shed Theatre, Exeter

Writer and Director: Tom Spencer Reviewer: Bethan Highgate-Betts This year's Christmas offering from The Bike Shed Theatre sees the venue team up with award-winning theatre company Fine Chisel, to bring a post-apocalyptic-style festive treat. Devised and performed by Andy Kelly, George Williams and Megan Brooks, Beneath The Blizzard is set 40 years after the onslaught of a life-changing blizzard. Forcing ...

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Aladdin – Salisbury Playhouse

Writer: Andrew Pollard Director: Ryan McBryde Reviewer: David Jobson What makes a good pantomime - is it celebrities, big sets or special effects? Or does it need plenty of laughs, fun and high jinx.  If Salisbury Playhouse’s contribution is anything to go by it is certainly the latter, together with a creative team that knows their pantomimes and love their ...

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The Snow Queen – Bristol Old Vic, Bristol

Writer: Vivienne Franzmann Composer, Lyricist and Musical Director: Gwyneth Herbert Director: Lee Lyford Reviewer: Chris Oldham Christmas at the Old Vic is typically a classy affair, with no expense spared bringing anything from a beloved, to a lesser-known fairy tale to life. Visually at least, this year's telling of Hans Christian Anderson's The Snow Queen more than fits the bill. ...

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Cinderella: A Fairytale – Tobacco Factory Theatre, Bristol

Devised by: The Company Revival Director: Chris Pirie Reviewer: Chris Oldham Gearing up for a recently extended run into the New Year, Cinderella: A Fairytale returns to the Tobacco Factory theatre this Christmas for the first time since its première back in 2011. Taking the Grimm Brothers' version of the well-known fairytale as its template, it tells the story of ...

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Madama Butterfly – Theatre Royal, Plymouth

Composer: Giacomo Puccini Librettists: Luigi Illica and Giuseppe Giacosa Director: Annilese Miskimmon Reviewer: Helen Tope Telling the true story of a Japanese geisha abandoned by her American husband, Madama Butterfly is one of opera’s greatest tragedies – perhaps the greatest one of all. The story is irresistible: a naive 15-year-old Cio-Cio-San is married off to an American lieutenant, Pinkerton, in ...

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Cinderella – Theatre Royal Winchester

Writer and Director: James Barry Reviewer: David Jobson December is upon us and that means one thing - Pantomime.  Nearly every theatre has a Christmas show on the bill. There will be pantomimes full of celebrities, innuendoes by the minute, pop songs and big special effects.  James Barry has written many pantomimes for local and amateur theatres, with Cinderella being ...

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Sunny Afternoon – Mayflower Theatre, Southampton

Cast of UK Tour of Sunny Afternoon

Writer: Joe Penhall Director: Edward Hall Reviewer: Sharon MacDonald-Armitage Storming into Southampton's Mayflower theatre with a rocking punch is award-winning musical Sunny Afternoon. Telling the story of brothers Ray and Dave Davies and their fellow Kinks bandmates Pete Quaife and Mick Avory, Sunny Afternoon transports the audience back to the 60s and depicts the struggle of four working class lads ...

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Don Giovanni – Theatre Royal Plymouth

Director: Jonathan Kent Revival Director: Lloyd Wood Reviewer: Helen Tope A revival of the 2010 production directed by Jonathan Kent, Don Giovanni returns as part of this year’s Glyndebourne Tour. Based on the 14th Century nobleman Don Juan, Mozart reworks the legend into a tragi-comic opera that is startling as it is unique. In this production, the famous womaniser, and ...

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