What's on in the Midlands

Published: 3 December 2022
Reporter: Steve Orme

Potted Panto at The Core at Corby Cube
Ben Lancaster as Mr Poppy, Billy Roberts as Mr Maddens and the children of St Bernadettes in Nativity! The Musical at Birmingham Rep Credit: Pamela Raith
Beauty and the Beast at the Courtyard, Hereford Credit: Mark Douet

Three talented young singers in the 1960s embark on a journey through a world of fame, fortune and the ruthless realities of show business in Dreamgirls at the Alexandra Theatre, Birmingham from Tuesday until Saturday 31 December.

Michelle Collins plays the bad fairy Carabosse in Sleeping Beauty at the Winding Wheel, Chesterfield from Tuesday until Tuesday 3 January 2023.

Extracts from seven classic pantos are performed in 70 “hilarious” minutes in Potted Panto at The Core at Corby Cube, Northamptonshire from Wednesday until Sunday.

Birmingham Rep’s new production for three- to six-year-olds, Jack and the Magic Beanstalk, climbs into The Door from Wednesday until Saturday 31 December, while on the main stage, Nativity! The Musical which had its world première at the Rep in 2017 continues until Saturday 7 January 2023.

Rudolph and Ellie the Elf go on a mission to save Santa who has got himself stuck in the snow in Santa’s Christmas Rescue in the B2 auditorium at the Belgrade Theatre, Coventry from Thursday until Saturday 24 December, while on the main stage, Iain Lauchlan has written and appears in Jack and the Beanstalk which continues until Saturday 7 January 2023.

There are two shows in the Studio at Lichfield Garrick, a new comedy play by Carolyn Scott-Jeffs, The Bah Humbug Club, from Thursday until Tuesday 27 December and Joseph O’Malley’s adaptation of Hans Christian Andersen’s The Ugly Duckling and Other Stories from Saturday until Saturday 24 December, while on the main stage, Sam Rabone plays Nurse Nellie in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs until Sunday 8 January 2023.

Julia Bird and Reece Carter are the cast of Anna Wheatley’s Goldilocks and the Three Bears which has a “pop-tastic dance-party of an adventure” during the day at Nottingham Playhouse from Thursday until Saturday 31 December, while the theatre’s artistic director Adam Penford has written and directs Dick Whittington which continues until Saturday 14 January 2023.

Improvised musical Rhymes Against Humanity, a “non-stop joyride of musical hilarity that’s created in the moment”, should hit the right note at Upstairs at the Western, Leicester on Friday.

Festive funsters the Babbling Vagabonds find out what happens when a ballerina stops dancing, a robot stops computing and a jack-in-the-box loses his bounce in The Christmas Toy Shop Mystery on Derby Market Place from Friday until Friday 30 December.

John Thomson is Abanazar and Morgan Brind plays Widow Twankey in Aladdin at Derby Arena from Friday until Saturday 31 December.

Watershed Productions presents the Little Angel Theatre and Northampton Royal and Derngate production of Julia Donaldson and Lydia Monks’s The Singing Mermaid in the Djanogly Theatre at Lakeside Arts, Nottingham from Friday until Saturday 31 December.

Keala Settle, who played Lettie Lutz in the film The Greatest Showman, heads the cast of Jack and the Beanstalk at Royal and Derngate, Northampton from Friday until Monday 2 January 2023, while in the Underground studio the 200-year-old festive poem The Night Before Christmas which is for under-sevens and their families continues until Saturday 31 December.

Birmingham Royal Ballet continues to perform Sir Peter Wright’s production of Tchaikovsky’s The Nutcracker at Birmingham Hippodrome until Saturday.

James Holmes returns to Buxton Opera House for the seventh time to play the dame in Sleeping Beauty from Saturday until Sunday 1 January 2023.

Dancing duo A J and Curtis Pritchard, Evie Pickerill, Jarred Christmas and Richard J Fletcher go to the ball in Cinderella at De Montfort Hall, Leicester from Saturday until Monday 2 January 2023.

David Graham Productions offers “sensational live ‘60s music and jokes aplenty” in Eric’s Christmas Turkey which continues at the New Vic, Newcastle-under-Lyme until Saturday 10 December while the final show in the theatre’s 60th anniversary year, Theresa Heskins’s adaptation of Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland, continues until Saturday 28 January 2023.

Emma Reeves’s adaptation of Hans Christian Andersen’s Ugly Duckling continues in the Studio at Derby Theatre until Saturday 31 December while on the main stage, Toby Hulse’s adaptation of Kenneth Grahame’s The Wind in the Willows also continues until Saturday 31 December.

Nick Lane reworks Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs for The Courtyard, Hereford which continues during the day until Saturday 31 December while Hereford’s “biggest family pantomime” Beauty and the Beast continues until Saturday 7 January 2023.

Freckle Productions performs Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler's Stick Man which continues at Warwick Arts Centre, Coventry until Saturday 31 December.

A new version of a classic, The Further Adventures of Peter Pan—The Return of Captain Hook, continues at Mansfield Palace Theatre until Saturday 31 December.

David Edgar’s adaptation of Charles Dickens’s A Christmas Carol which features Adrian Edmondson as Scrooge continues in the Royal Shakespeare Theatre, Stratford until Sunday 1 January 2023.

Victoria Lucie plays Princess Rose, Harry Polden is Mervin the Magician, Jake Reynolds takes the role of Prince Vince and Sean McKenzie is Nurse Nancy Nightly in Little Wolf Entertainment’s Sleeping Beauty which continues at Loughborough Town Hall until Monday 2 January 2023.

Joe Pasquale is Muddles and Steps singer Faye Tozer is the Wicked Queen in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs which continues at the Theatre Royal, Nottingham until Sunday 8 January 2023.

The regional premiere of The Wizard of Oz which features additional songs by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice as well as Harold Arlen and E Y Harburg’s songs from the original film follows the yellow brick road to Curve, Leicester until Sunday 8 January 2023.