Oldham's Aladdin put back a year

Published: 14 August 2020
Reporter: David Upton

Aladdin at Oldham Coliseum

Oldham Coliseum Theatre’s 2020 pantomime, Aladdin, has been postponed to Christmas 2021.

It will now take place from November 13 to January 8, 2022.

At this point in the year, the making of the Coliseum’s panto would usually be well under way. The show would be cast with professional actors and a local community chorus and the staff team would be making set, props and costumes, ready for rehearsals to start in October.

In a year that is financially challenging because of the extended closure, and in which local lockdown restrictions in Oldham and Greater Manchester were recently reinstated, the Coliseum cannot commit to investing money knowing audiences may not be able to attend. It would be financially catastrophic for the organisation and the theatre cannot risk its future, nor those of the staff, artists and creatives it supports.

Artistic director Chris Lawson commented, “we’re saddened we’ll have to wait another year to share this with our audiences.”

Chief executive Susan Wildman added, “it is simply not possible for us to stage our pantomime with social distancing in place. Government has stated it cannot give theatres any indication of when they can reopen without social distancing until November at the earliest—the month our panto was due to open.”

Ticket-holders will be contacted.