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Christimas Showtime!

Published on November 24th 2005.

Look at that weather. And it's freezing cold. Thankfully panto season is nearly upon us to cheer us out of our doldrums. The next few months will see Manchester’s billboards covered with pictures of C-list celebrities in tights looking just that little bit too cheerful, and its theatres resounding with delighted high pitched cries of ‘He’s behind you!’.

Whilst the Palace Theatre is being distinctly un-festive this year with a production of Miss Saigon over the Christmas Period (Boo! Hiss!), other Manchester theatres will play host to a range of both traditional and contemporary christmas shows, so there’s plenty to choose from. If you have your heart set on a pantomime then the two main players this year are Cinderella at The Lowry and Peter Pan at The Opera House. A modern take on Cinderella will be playing at the Lowry from December 9th to January 8th. Starring Lucy Jo Hudson (crazy Katy from Coronation Street), this brand new pop musical version of the traditional tale incorporates the traditional tale with a top ten score.

The trusty Opera House is sticking to tradition this year, with its swashbuckling production of Peter Pan that will run from December 10th to January 8th. ‘Oh no it won’t!’ ‘Oh yes it will!’ and so on. Don’t miss the chance to boo and hiss at Steve McFadden (Phil Mitchell from Eastenders) in the role Peter Pan’s nemesis, Captain Hook.

But aside from pantomimes, Manchester’s venues will be offering much to help you get into the Christmas spirit this year. Whether it’s a Christmas Carol concert at the Bridgewater Hall or a festive play at the Royal Exchange, here is a selection of events to inspire some Christmas Cheer in even the grumpiest of scrooges.
Jayne Robinson

The Lowry

Starring Lucy Jo Hudson, this brand new pop musical version of the traditional tale incorporates the traditional tale with a top ten score.Lyric Theatre, 9th Dec – 8th Jan (7pm, matinees at 2pm)
£14 - £22
Click here for more

The Royal Exchange
HARVEY by Mary Chase

The classic broadway show immortalised by James Stewart’s classic movie comes to Manchester, a great festive show for the whole family.The Main Theatre, 22nd November – 7th January
£3.75 - £25.50

In The Shadow of Trees
An enchanting children's show, a unique magical production with a Miyazaki-like charm.Set in a mysterious woodland, this is the compelling story of a young girl, abandoned at birth, who grows up nurtured by nature alone - a feral child who slowly discovers then loves and protects the natural environment she has been raised in.

But one fateful day, she discovers she is not the only human in the woods.In the Shadow of Trees is an enthralling, captivating, warm and humane tale from one of the UK's leading visual theatre companies whose last visit to the Studio earned Horse + Bamboo the Manchester Evening News Theatre Award for 'Best Special Entertainment 2004.
The Studio, 16th December – 7th January


Manchester Opera House

Steve McFadden (Phil Mitchell from Eastenders) plays the role of Captain Hook in JM Barrie's gripping tale about the boy who never grows up. This will be showing throughout the Christmas period but book early so that you will not be disappointed by missing out on this year's panto.10th December – 8th January, (7pm , matinees at 2.30pm)£3.50 - £22.50
Click here for tickets

The Library Theatre

Charles Dicken’s classic tale adapted for the stage by Neil Bartlett and directed by Roger Haines.
26th November – 21st January

Contact Theatre

Moss Side, Christmas, 1974. The Turkey’s burnt, Margaret’s hitting the bottle, Bogey’s had enough. After eighteen years he’s moving out. Only there’s Lauren to consider. Pregnant at fifteen; another wasted life. History repeats - isn’t that what people say? An unflinching portrait of a family in crisis, What’s in the Cat shows a harsh slice of real life from Manchester writer, Linda Brogan.
Contains strong language- suitable for ages 15+
18th November – 3rd December

The Bridgewater Hall

Photo by Neil Redfern
Christmas begins with Choir of King’s College, Cambridge
Monday 05 December 7.30pm

Christmas Swing Fever
Swing through the festive season with your favourite melodies such as White Christmas, Baby it’s Cold Outside and Let it Snow.
Friday 2 December 2005 8.00pm
Tickets £14.50 £16.50 £19.50

Carols by Candlelight
Reflecting the grace and charm of the 18th century, this exquisite concert of beautiful carols and seasonal music presented in an evocative candle-lit style setting is the most elegant way to herald Christmas.
Wednesday 14 December & Monday 19th December 2005 7.30pm
Tickets £15.50 £21.00 £26.50 £31.00

Hallé Carol Concert
Sunday 18 December 2005 3.00pm, 7.30pm
Tickets £8.00 £15.00 £20.00 £24.00 £29.00 £34.00

Manchester Boys Choir Christmas Celebration
Designed as a real family concert, with the accent on children.
Monday 19 December 2005 2.30pm
Tickets £7.00 £9.50 £12.50 £16.50

The Glory of Christmas
This special family concert of glorious seasonal and traditional music perfectly captures the true spirit of Christmas.
Tuesday, 20th December 2005, 7.30pm
Tickets £15.50 £21.00 £26.50 £31.00

White Christmas
From Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire to A Winter Wonderland... Have yourself a merry little Christmas, just like the ones we used to know!
Wednesday 21 December 2005 7.30pm
Tickets £16.50 £22.00 £28.00 £32.00

Hallé: Carl's Christmas Classics
Carl Davis conductor
Thursday 22 December 2005 7.30pm
Tickets £8.00 £15.00 £20.00 £24.00 £29.00 £34.00

Hallé Carol Concert
Friday 23 December 2005 7.30pm
Tickets £8.00 £15.00 £20.00 £24.00 £29.00 £34.00

Chistmas Carol Singalong
Saturday 24 December 2005 2.00pm and 5.30pm
Tickets £15.50 £21.00 £26.50 £31.00

Last Night of the Christmas Proms
Exuberance, pomp and ceremony in a perfect programme of Classic...after Classic...after Classic.
Tuesday 27 December 2005 7.30pm
Tickets £15.50 £21.00 £26.50 £31.00


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