Listings Mon 11 – Sun 17 December 2023

Dec 13 2023 | By More

What’s on Edinburgh’s stages this week?

Almost Christmas week and there’s plenty on offer for everyone, from a wee one-off Scratch night from a new local grassroots collective, to the big opening of a major new musical tour.

Before we get to the Christmas fodder, first mention goes to new indie theatre collective Shark Bait Theatre with Fish Food – there’s something in the water, at Augustine United Church (Thurs only, tickets). A fundraising night of new writing from five up and coming young writers, Shark Bait say they have a mission to “open serious conversations about the human condition through humour and entertainment. Shedding a humorous light on these difficult conversations, i.e, ‘The Shark’, allowing audiences to find catharsis in their troubles through laughter…” Sounds good to us.

Amy Campbell as Cinderella at Portobello Town Hall. Pic: Malik Tajamul

Also bucking the seasonal trend is the Traverse with a rare home production: Same Team – A Street Soccer Story (Fri 8 – Sat 23 Dec, tickets). The show sees five women come together with one goal, one dream. Coming from very different backgrounds in life they have to work together as a team if they want to do what no one from Scotland has ever done before. To win the Homeless World Cup, and bring the trophy home.

Big breath: now for those pantomimes, Christmas shows and other bits of seasonal entertainment…

Opening this week we have EPT’s Cinderella at the Church Hill (Fri 15 – Sat 23 Dec, tickets), which is selling out very fast indeed. This is Paul Reakes’ take on the ever-popular panto in which Charming is off gallivanting round the world and leaves Pantomania to be governed by the selfish Duke of Verruca. When the prince returns the duke refuses to relinquish power. Luckily, faithfull Buttons, his friend Kathy and of course the Fairy Godmother are around to work wonders.


Edinburgh Acting School have their Cinderella at Marchmont St Giles (Fri 15 – Sat 16, tickets) and a Marchmont panto for Marchmont people, written and directed by Audrey Jones. Will Cinderella get to the ball or is she destined to work at Bruntsfield Hall for the rest of her life? Will those evil stepsisters EVER say anything nice? And how raging is that Baroness!

Out at Saint Salvador’s Episcopal Church, the Forth Act is putting on their version of A Christmas Carol (Fri 15 – Sun 17, tickets). Entry is free or by donation, with all proceeds to St Salvador’s Food Pantry which serves over 70 families week to week.

The Snow Queen, 2023. Samuel Pashby as Corby, Richard Conlon as Hamish the Unicorn and Rosie Graham as Gerda. Pic: Jess Shurte.

Local youth company Strange Town take up residency at the Storytelling Centre over the weekend with three shows: Last Christmas (Fri 15/Sat 16 tickets), a “Sci-Fi Christmas farce with a heart for home; Tarlike (Fri 15/Sat 16, tickets), A “gothic sci-fi quest of Christmassy proportions” and Billi & the Polar Bear (Sat 16/Sun 17, tickets), a light-hearted Christmas comedy-caper across the frozen wilderness.

Recently opened we have top of the pops from Raw Material at the Studio Theatre where it is the Unicorn Christmas Party (ends Sun 24, tickets). Our critic said: ★★★★☆ Boogie time! of a show where wee ones join glittering, magical unicorns Melody and Luna, as they bring a little winter sunshine, moonlight, good times, and a lot of boogies into everyone’s lives, with easy-to-follow dance moves and a soundtrack of Christmas hits and a mission to find Santa’s sparkle.

At the Assembly Roxy, Flabbergast Theatre have Boris and Sergey’s Christmas Cabaret (ends Thurs 21, tickets). Our critic was less impressed, giving a ★★☆☆☆ Puppets unstrung to the Balkan bad boys of puppetry, returning with their very own brand of Christmas cheer.


And then of course there is the biggie – Wicked, which opens its new UK tour at the Playhouse (ends Sat 14 Jan 2024, tickets). Based on Gregory Maguire’s novel, this imagines the backstory and future possibilities to the lives of L. Frank Baum’s characters from The Wonderful Wizard of Oz.It’s a big, flashy and thoroughly entertaining evening of top knotch musical theatre, which has an increasingly political edge as the world changes around it over the last 20 years.

Then at the Festival Theatre there is the  ★★★★☆ Highflying Pantomime Adventures of Peter Pan (ends Sun 31 Dec, tickets), with pantomime favourites Allan Stewart, Grant Stott and Jordan Young doing what they do best in a hugely local show that is thoroughly satisfying.

And at the Lyceum, Morna Young’s new script for The Snow Queen (ends Sun 31 Dec, tickets), adds a decidedly Edinburgh and Scottish twist to Hans Christian Andersen’s story. Our critic said: ★★★★☆ Epic of this tale of the beautiful and fearsome Snow Queen who steals young Kei away to her frozen kingdom, leaving the brave and brilliant Gerda to come to his rescue.

The third Cinderella of this week’s listings is down at the Portobello Town Hall (ends Sat 23 Dec, tickets) where new company Stage Door Entertainment bring professional pantomime back to the newly re-opened venue, with a production that is packed with local references, loads of songs and a cast of sizzling young Edinburgh actors.

Last of the panto offerings is at The Three Sisters where Sleeping Booty (ends Sat 23 Dec, tickets) brings your Adult Panto staples with sparkling decor and costumes, an utterly filthy script and all your favourite cheesy anthems, fun, frolics, laughter and audience participation.

As we say: something for everyone! Enjoy and see you next week…


Assembly Roxy
2 Roxburgh Place, EH8 9SU
Boris & Sergey’s Christmas Cabaret (Flabbergast Theatre)
Tue 12 – Thurs 21 Dec 2023.
Evenings: 7.30pm. (Central)
Tickets and details: Book here.

Augustine United Church
41 George IV Bridge, EH1 1EL
Fish Food: there’s something in the water (Shark Bait Theatre)
Thurs 14 Dec 2023.
Evening: 7.30pm. Book here.

Church Hill Theatre
33 Morningside Road, EH10 4DR.
Cinderella (EPT)
Fri 15 – Sat 23 Dec 2023.
Evenings: 15, 19, 20, 21, 22: 7.00pm.
Matinees: 16, 17, 23: 2.30pm.
Tickets and details: Book here.

Festival Theatre
13/29 Nicolson Street EH8 9FT. Phone booking: 0131 529 6000.
The Pantomime Adventures of Peter Pan
Ends Sun 31 Dec 2023 
Tue – Sat: 2pm & 7 pm. Sun: 1pm & 5pm.
No mats: Dec 5, 6, 7, 13. No evening perf: Dec 14
Æ review: ★★★★☆ Highflying
Tickets and details: Book here.

Lyceum Theatre
Grindlay Street EH3 9AX. Phone booking: 0131 248 4848.
The Snow Queen
By Morna Young, adapted from the story by Hans Christian Andersen
Ends: Sun 31 Dec 2023
Tue – Sat: 7pm; Mats Sat: 2pm; Sun: 1pm & 6pm.
Æ review: ★★★★☆ Epic
Tickets and details:  Book here.

Marchmont St Giles’ Parish Church
3 Kilgraston Rd, EH9 2DW
Cinderella (EAS)
Fri 15 – Sat 16 Dec 2023.
Evenings: 7.00pm, Sat mat: 2pm.
Tickets and details: Book here.

18 – 22 Greenside Place, EH1 3AA
Thurs 7 Dec 2023 – Sat 14 Jan 2024
Tue – Sat: 7.30pm; Wed, Thurs, Sat, Sun: 2.30pm.
Tickets and details: Book here.

Portobello Town Hall
147-149 Portobello High St, Portobello EH15 1AF.
Cinderella (Stage Door Entertainment)
Ends: Sat 23 Dec 2023
All Fri: 7pm; All Sat & Thurs 28/Fri 29: 2pm & 7pm. Wed 20 – Fri 22: 1pm & 7pm.
Tickets and details:  Book here.

Saint Salvador’s Episcopal Church
61 Saughton Mains Street EH11 3QX.
A Christmas Carol (Forth Act)
Fri 15 – Sun 17 Dec 2023
Evenings: 7pm.
Booking details: Book here

Scottish Storytelling Centre
43-45 High St, Edinburgh EH1 1SR.
Last Christmas (Strange Town 11-14s)

Fri 15/Sat 16 Dec 2023.
Fri: 6.30pm, Sat: 8.30pm.
Tickets and details: Book here.

Tarlike (Strange Town 11-14s)
Fri 15/Sat 16 Dec 2023.
Fri: 8.30pm, Sat 6:30pm.
Tickets and details: Book here.

Billi & the Polar Bear (Strange Town 8-10s)
Sat 16/Sun 17 Dec 2023.
Sat: 3pm, Sun: 11:30.
Tickets and details: Book here.

Studio Theatre
The Studio, 22 Potterrow, EH8 9BL. Phone booking: 0131 529 6000.
Unicorn Christmas Party
Fri 8 – Sun 24 Dec 2023
Wed – Sun: 10.30am & 1.30pm.
Æ review: ★★★★☆ Boogie time!
Tickets and details: Book here.

The Three Sisters
139 Cowgate, EH1 1JS.
Sleeping Booty
Wed 6 – Sat 23 Dec 2023
Wed – Sat: 9pm; Sun: 3pm.
Tickets and details: Book here.

10 Cambridge Street, EH1 2ED. Phone booking: 0131 228 1404
Same Team – A Street Soccer Story
Friday 8 – Saturday 23 December 2023
Previews Fri 8/Sat 9: 7.30pm.

Tue – Sat (not Sat 23): 7.30pm;
Mats: Sats 16 & 23, Wed 20, Fri 22: 2.30pm.
Tickets and details: Book here.

Waldorf Astoria Edinburgh, the Caledonian
Princes Street, EH1 2AB.
Edinburgh Magic
Sat 16  & Weds 20 Dec 2023
Saturday evenings: 6pm & 8.30pm (Versailles Suite)
Æ Review: ★★★★☆ Rosy
Tickets and details: Book here.

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