Following on from my last blog post about all the wonderful shows you can catch this Christmas in Edinburgh, I have now been lucky enough to see three of them and can confirm that they are indeed well worth a visit :
First up, I saw Shark In The Park and it was everything I remembered and loved from seeing it when it was up during the fringe last year (read the full review here )..it had a new cast, but the same old toe tapping, catchy songs and music and plenty of audience participation to keep little ones engaged. If you’ve got smaller children, this show is perfectly pitched for them, with some great puppets, lots of familiar phrases from the well loved books and of course shark spotting galore !
Next up was The Arabian Nights, which was certainly a highlight for my daughter….she absolutely loved the idea of ‘a story within a story, within a story, within a story…’ and was gripped by the tales we were treated to. The costumes are beautiful and so is the set design, in this brilliant production which will whisk you away to far off lands and completely entrance you with epic storytelling. At this time of year it’s nice to see something a bit different and get utterly absorbed in all the magic and colour. Humorous, touching and totally gripping – get your seat and get settled in for the journey ahead!
Lastly I saw Shona Reppe’s Cinderella at the Traverse Theatre which is only on until the 24th December. This captivating and gentle re-imagining of the story is simply exquisite ! Every last detail has been carefully thought out – the puppets are filled with emotion, the set is full of clever drawers and openings which continually keep you guessing and the soundscape perfectly accompanies the story, making this one hour show bursting to the seams ! Rick Conte is super talented and brings this production alive with his plethora of voices and facial expressions. I am sure anyone who sees it, like me, will just want it to last even longer – it’s certainly worth checking out.
With the approaching festivities, we are also being treated to some more spectacular theatrical performances…there seems to be an abundance of shows to choose from this year, which will make this Christmas time that little bit extra special !
With ballet, puppet shows, theatre and of course the Panto, it looks like there is definitely something for everybody this year ! :
The Arabian Nights – Following huge successes with Alice in Wonderland and The Chronicles of Narnia in previous years, the Lyceum is bringing us a storytelling feast with the familiar faces of Aladdin, Sinbad and Ali Baba – along with mysterious genies, magic carpets, talking birds and a whole host of heroes and villains. Rich with suspense, enchantment, romance, and hilarity, the ancient tales of The Arabian Nights are irresistible for all ages, and a great opportunity to bring families together, transporting them to the glittering heat of a faraway magical and musical world, this Christmas. Royal Lyceum Theatre November 25th – January 6th (ages 5+)
Shark in the Park – For those of you who missed this at last year’s fringe festival, this is well worth seeing. A bright, colourful and musical production which is perfectly pitched for younger audiences and those who are familiar with a phrase or two from the extremely popular books. From Nonsense Room Productions (Hairy Maclary and Friends), this is another foot tapping, musical delight of a show. Festival Square Spiegeltent December 1st – January 6th Recommended for ages 2-7 (under 2s dont require a ticket provided they sit on someone’s lap !)
The Nutcracker – Scottish Ballet – Christmas 2017 sees the return of Scottish Ballet’s much-loved production of The Nutcracker created by Scottish Ballet’s founder, Peter Darrell. Travel on an enchanting journey with young Clara, who falls asleep after a Christmas party and dreams of helping the Nutcracker Prince defeat an army of mice. Join her as she visits the glittering Land of Snow, where delicate snowflakes come to life and be dazzled by the Kingdom of Sweets, the enchanted realm of the Sugar Plum Fairy. Scottish Ballet’s dancers create magic in this most famous festive tale, with luxurious Victorian costumes and colourful sets. The world famous Tchaikovsky score is performed by the Scottish Ballet Orchestra. Festival Theatre December 9th – December 30th Recommended for ages 4+
La Clique Noel– I’m personally super excited for the return of La Clique !! I remember lots of late nights in the Spiegeltent watching the absolute talents and madness of the creativity of La Clique and what cabaret acts they could put together – it never failed to astound ! This special seasonal show is not for those with younger children – but I predict will go down well for those with older children keen to see something a little out of the ordinary ! Festival Square Spiegeltent 17th November – 6th January
And this year it appears we are being treated to not one, but two very different Cinderella’s:
Cinderella – Every day is a bad hair day for Cinderella…..The classic fairytale is beautifully re-imagined by Shona Reppe and performed by acclaimed puppeteer Rick Conte, in this highly visual award-winning production featuring secret hatches, hidden drawers and a handbag full of magic! Following the galloping success of Black Beauty, Shona Reppe returns to the Traverse this Christmas with an enchanting show that will dazzle young people and grown-ups alike. Traverse Theatre December 8th – December 24th Recommended for ages 6+
Cinderella – Cinders is also this year’s much loved Pantomime at the Kings Theatre! Expect plenty of singing, dancing and audience participation !! Kings Theatre 2nd December – 21st January