Four venues cancel shows

Dec 20 2021 | By More

Playhouse, Traverse and Storytelling Centre closed.

All remaining performances of White Christmas at the Edinburgh Playhouse have been cancelled, as of Monday 20 December 2021 due to “issues surrounding Covid 19”.

The Traverse has also closed its building, with all remaining performances of WILF cancelled, as has the Scottish Storytelling Centre where all performances of Macastory’s Jack and the Beanstalk have been postponed until the new year.

All remaining performances of White Christmas at the Playhouse have been cancelled

The Brunton cancelled both its Monday performances of panto, Hansel and Gretel, “due to a Covid issue backstage”. At the time of writing it was still hoping to continue the run with performances scheduled to start from Tuesday.

The news follows the announcement on Friday that the Gaiety theatre in Ayr was cancelling all remaining performances of its own pantomime Jamie and the Unicorn.

However, the Gaiety’s production of Jamie and the Unicorn is available in a filmed version online for a fee of £9 to anyone whose pantomime hopes for the year have been dashed. See our review: ★★★★☆ Streaming good fun.

The Playhouse closures come following the last minutes cancellation of three performances over the weekend, which drew criticism from audiences, some of whom were already queuing outside the venue when the announcement was made.

In a statement, the Playhouse said: “Despite precautions taken by all those involved in the production, the rest of the White Christmas run at the Edinburgh Playhouse due to issues surrounding Covid-19.”

Recognising that many thousands of people had bought tickets for the production which was first announced two years ago, it added: “For patrons with tickets, you will be contacted directly by your point of purchase with details of refunds. Please be patient with them at this very busy time.”

WILF will be back

At the Traverse, executive producer Linda Crooks issued an online statement saying: “It is with a heavy heart that we have concluded that the best option for the Traverse, its audiences and staff, is to cancel the last few WILF performances this week and close our building to the public from Tuesday 21 December.

“We are sorry to disrupt festive plans but this very hard decision has been made in light of all the information we have received from Scottish Government, through our personal experiences, regarding the prevalence and speed of the transmission of the Coronavirus Omicron variant, and our duty of care to our community and colleagues.”

However Crooks said that this is not the end for WILF.

She confirmed that James Ley’s play will return saying: “We are incredibly excited to share that the show that has set Twitter on fire this month will return, as one of the highlights of our August programme, to delight our Festival audiences”.

On Friday 17 December the Scottish Government announced that it was allocating £20 million to emergency Covid relief for the Culture Sector. This will be administered by Creative Scotland which will be making a statement on this in the near future.

All those who have had show performances cancelled should contact the point of sale for details of how to get a refund.


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