Sunday, 27 November 2011

Christmas season 2011 at Royal & Derngate Northampton

Alice In Wonderland

Join Alice for some wonderfully silly adventures in Wonderland this Christmas

Northampton’s Royal & Derngate will be transformed into a topsy-turvy wonderland for all the family when this year’s Christmas show takes to the Royal stage. Following on from the success of last year’s production of The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, the theatre presents another well-loved children’s classic – a brand new adaptation of Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland – from 30 November to 8 January.

Join Alice on a wonderfully silly journey as she encounters all the favourite characters from the classic tale, from the White Rabbit to the Mad Hatter, the Cheshire Cat, the Duchess and the March Hare, taking part in crazy tea parties and incomprehensible croquet games. Providing an array of madcap entertainment for the bad-tempered Queen of Hearts, who celebrates her birthday every day, these weird and wonderful characters will delight audiences of all ages. With the zany world of Wonderland spilling out from the auditorium into the theatre’s foyer areas, this will be a truly magical theatre-going experience.

This hilarious new take on the timeless tale has been written by Phil Porter, who is known for his play Starseeker. Phil’s delightful adaptation of Hansel and Gretel has also been seen in both Northampton and Corby in recent years.

Joining forces to direct the Christmas show this year are Royal & Derngate’s Artistic Director Laurie Sansom, who directed The Wizard of Oz for Christmas 2008, and Associate Director Dani Parr, whose past productions include The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe and 101 Dalmatians.

With live music, crazy antics and giggles galore – and plenty of opportunities to join in the fun – this hilarious new take on the timeless tale is the perfect festive treat for all the family. The show runs from Wednesday 30 November to Sunday 8 January and tickets are priced from £9 to £21, with concessions, groups and schools rates are available. To check times or to book, call Box Office on 01604 624811 or visit

Down the Rabbit Hole

Journey down the rabbit hole in an interactive storytelling event for under 5s

Following the sell-out success of last year’s magical Through the Wardrobe, Royal & Derngate will take young audiences to an exciting new world as they go Down the Rabbit Hole in an interactive storytime event for under 5s and their adults. A companion piece to Royal & Derngate’s Christmas show Alice in Wonderland, Down the Rabbit Hole takes place from Tuesday 6 December to Sunday 8 January in the theatre’s Underground performance space, which is transformed with an enchanting and topsy turvy installation.

Journey down the rabbit hole with Alice to join the Mad Hatter at his tea party and explore a mad-cap world where almost anything can happen! Housed in Underground this curiouser and curiouser experience is a marvellous introduction for the very young to Lewis Carroll’s hilarious tale.

Royal & Derngate has a well-earned reputation for being at the forefront in creating engaging and entertaining interactive shows for younger children to enjoy with their families, with past successes including Knitwits, Minibreak, Wish Wash and the recent larger-scale hit, Flathampton.

The magical experience of Down the Rabbit Hole can be enjoyed at Royal & Derngate from Tuesday 6 December to Sunday 8 January, with performances at various times through the day. Tickets are just £5 each. To check times and to book tickets, call the Box Office on 01604 624811 or visit


A star-studded cast takes the stage in Aladdin at Royal & Derngate this Christmas!

This Christmas Royal & Derngate will stage a spectacular and unmissable production of Aladdin with a superb cast led by one of the UK’s funniest and best-known celebrity comedians Bobby Davro, together with the multi-talented dancer, choreographer and performer Brian Fortuna, veteran performer Jeffrey Holland, and icon of children’s television, Basil Brush!

Taking the role of Wishee Washee in Aladdin, Bobby Davro is a man of many talents; comedian, impressionist, game-show host and actor. His Saturday night series Bobby Davro on The Box made him a household name. Bobby has also presented a number of game shows, such as Winner Takes All. Recent appearances have included Dancing on Ice, and the role of loveable rogue Vinnie Monks in EastEnders.

Brian Fortuna, making his panto debut as Aladdin in Northampton, is best known for his astonishingly skilled performances on two series of Strictly Come Dancing. He was also lead choreographer on the ground-breaking BBC3 show Dancing on Wheels, pairing disabled and able-bodied contestants. He has been principal dancer in the two US tours of Dancing With The Stars, as well as appearing in The Aviator with Leonardo Di Caprio.

Joining Brian and Bobby on stage will be the well-loved actor Jeffrey Holland in the role of Widow Twankey, in his 40th season of pantomime. As well as his numerous stage appearances, Jeffrey is well known from classic hit TV series Hi de Hi, You Rang M’Lord and Oh Dr Beeching. Aladdin also stars television favourite and the world’s most famous fox, Basil Brush, in the role of Chief Inspector Basil - Boom, Boom! 

Staged by Qdos Entertainment, the world’s largest pantomime producer, Aladdin is packed with all of the traditional panto ingredients including an abundance of comedy, a fabulous flying carpet, stunning sets and beautiful costumes, and has the Royal & Derngate’s hallmark of outstanding value for money entertainment for all ages. With prices held from last year, new groups rates and concession rates available at more performances, there has never been at better time to enjoy a pantomime at Royal & Derngate.

Aladdin runs from Friday 9 December 2011 to Sunday 8 January 2012. 
Tickets can be booked on 01604 624811 or online at