Christmas on the stage in Bristol

24 11 2011

David Hasselhoff will be in Bristol this Christmas, playing Captain Hook in Peter Pan at the Hippodrome. It is the hope of my mate Paul and I to spend a bit of time with the Hoff, perhaps 18 holes of crazy golf at Jungle Rumble in Cabot Circus, or shooting some pool in the Elbow Rooms. We’re not fussy.

With the former Baywatch and Knightrider star in town, Peter Pan will be a big draw when it starts at the Hippodrome on December 10. Before the panto arrives, on December 4 is That’ll be the Day, “unique comedy routines mixed with all the best non-stop Christmas hits”. Torture for some. Just the ticket for others.

At the Bristol Old Vic, during the transformation of the main auditorium, their big Christmas show is this year being hosted at the Colston Hall. Coram Boy, of which there will be only 15 performances between December 22 and 30, is “an epic tale of love, loss and reunion”, brought to us by the same people behind Swallows & Amazons and Treasure Island. Featuring Handel and a host of Bristolians young and old on stage, this is set to be an unforgettable production.

Other Christmas highlights at the Colston Hall are Mozart by Candlelight on December 3, the Royal Marines Christmas Spectacular on December 9, Christmas with the Salvation Army featuring guest soloist Paul Potts on December 11, the Bristol Evening Post Carol Concert on December 12, Christmas with the Rat Pack on December 13, the Jelli Records Christmas Show on December 14, and Bristol Choral Society Christmas Oratorio and Bristol Folk Festival Christmas Ceilidh on December 17.

Back at the Old Vic, Good Clown Bad Clown (December 1 to January 7) by award-winning writer Renata Allen is a festive show about a clown with a crisis of conscience ready to delight a younger audience. For adults, The Morpeth Carol (December 8-17) features “blood on the snow, crippled reindeer, Christmas presents on fire, a schoolboy in a stolen car and a strange man who may or may not be Santa”.

For all the family is Show of Strength’s Recycled Stockings at the Southville Centre between December 20 and 22, “a magical journey to meet six extraordinary characters who’ll each tell you an amazing story about Christmas”. Don’t forget to collect your own Christmas stocking when you arrive.

Further into Southville at the Tobacco Factory, Cinderella: A Fairy Tale is their Christmas show between December 7 and January 15. Travelling Light, the creative team behind Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves and Bristol Old Vic’s Treasure Island, brings a brand new version of the classic fairytale, featuring original live music alongside their quirky visual style.

In some of Bristol’s smallest theatres, the Christmas spirit is strong. The Little Black Box on Chandos Road, Redland, is putting on Escape Claus (December 6-17), uncovering the truth between Father and Mrs Christmas. Home Alonely (December 7-18) at the Wardrobe Theatre above Kingsdown’s White Bear pub tells the story of Kevin once again left to fend for himself over Christmas, history repeating itself 21 years after the original celluloid appearance. And at the Alma Tavern in Scaramouche Jones (December 13-17), a clown bids farewell to the stage at the age of 100.

Enjoy Christmas on the stage this winter in Bristol, and if you happen to see the Hoff meandering around town, please point him in our direction for some festive frolics.


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