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11 Festive Kid’s Plays

Dazzle them, amaze them; fill them with a love for the footlights that will last a life time. Here's Muddy Hants' guide to Christmas theatre for children.

Whoop, whoop and welcome to the Muddy Hants guide to Christmas theatre for children.

1/ Hetty Feather, Nuffield Southampton, 21 Nov 2017 – 7 Jan 2018

Join feisty Hetty Feather on an audacious adventure in this Olivier nominated West End hit based on Jacqueline Wilson’s best-selling book. Join our heroine as she escapes the Foundling Hospital, braves the streets of Victorian London and searches for her real mother and a true family of her own. With beautiful storytelling, spectacular circus skills, original songs and live music, this is critically acclaimed five star production. Be excited and delighted by this unmissable adventure story. Muddy Hants went recently and love it, here’s the review.

2/ Peter Pan, The Anvil, Basingstoke, Thur 14 Dec – Sun 7 Jan 

Follow Wendy, John and Michael Darling as they meet Tiger Lily and the Indians, the Lost Boys, and the impish Tinker Bell.  Boo and hiss as the evil Captain Hook, his comic sidekick Smee, and his motley pirate crew take on the children – but beware of the crocodile that ticks! Andrew Agnew, probably best known as the crime-busting, nature-loving PC Plum in the two times BAFTA Award-winning Balamory (CBeebies), plays Smee as well as the taking on the role of Director. Fancy winning tickets? Like Muddy Hants’ FB page and keep an eye out for details. Plus keep an eye out for Muddy Hants’ review.

To book tickets call 01256 844244 or go to

3/ Sleeping Beauty, The Point, Eastleigh, Tue 19 Dec – Sun 24 Dec

The world spins ever onward and the cycle of seasons turns, the Guardians of the year gather to tell each other stories. As a new winter begins, it is time to tell the tale of a kingdom in peril, its people driven from their homes as a dark forest covers the land. This Christmas The Point Youth Theatre presents Sleeping Beauty, a magical fantasy performed in the round, blending music, performance and puppetry to tell a story of trolls, fairies, forests and kings.

Ages: 5+

4/ A Christmas Carol, A Proteus Production, Touring South East England 

A rich man sits alone in his gilded tower and awaits the ghosts of his past and his future. In Scrooge’s office, somewhere in the City of London, the spirits are gathering in the darkening gloom to take this selfish, greedy man on a journey to his own salvation – but will he heed their lesson? He has just one night to change his ways or face a terrible fate.

Touring South East England throughout December and January.

Ages: 6+


5/ The Life and Adventures of Santa Claus, The Lights, Andover, Wed 6 – Sat 9 Dec

Follow the early life of Santa Claus: abandoned in the forest as a baby, adopted by the wood-nymphs, then making and delivering his very first toys. Meet the original reindeer Glossie and Flossie as well as the chilly rogue Jack Frost and find out the answer to lots of Christmas questions! Why do we hang stockings? When was the first Christmas tree? And why on earth does Santa climb down the chimney? Based on the book by L Frank Baum, author of The Wizard of Oz, this exciting story  includes lots of original music and audience participation.

Ages: 3+


6/ How Many Sleeps ’till Christmas, 14 – 24 Dec, Proteus Creation Space, Basingstoke

The land between waking and sleep is a wonderful place where anything can happen; dreams become reality and reality becomes a dream. Come and meet a colourful host of characters as they lead you on a magical journey where clouds are collected, stories are created, and where wishes are welcomed and dreams can come true. An interactive show aimed at pre-school children and their families. A wonderfully cozy Christmas treat.

Aimed at pre-school children.


7/ Santa’s Little Trolls, The Berry Theatre, Hedge End, Southampton, Thu 14 Dec – Sun 31 Dec

Jeremy really, really loves Christmas. All he wants is for each Christmas to be perfect; mince pies, stockings, mistletoe and especially, (and this is the icing on the Christmas cake)…lots and lots of SNOW! But, who exactly brings the snow? Santa? Rudolph? Jack Frost? No, it’s the one job left in the heavy hands of the Trolls of Winter. With silliness, laughter, stunning puppets (and maybe a humbug or two), Pickled Image presents a magical Christmas extravaganza for all the family!

Ages: 2+


8/ Lily and the Little Snow Bear, Winchester Discovery Centre, Sat 16 – Sun 24 Dec

Lily lives with Grandpa in a pretty little cottage somewhere in the countryside. There are just two more sleeps until Christmas and it’s snowing already! Lily loves SNOW! So, she pops on her coat and sets off to explore. But when she discovers a trail of soft little footprints, she’s in for a very big SURPRISE. This funny, heart warming tale of friendship is the perfect treat with exquisite puppets, enchanting music and a magical snowy setting.

Ages: 3 +



9/ Peter Pan, Theatre Royal Winchester, Tue 5 Dec – Mon 1 Jan

cartoon illustration of Peter Pan

‘Illustrations by Mark Beech’

Head for the second on the right and then straight on till morning. Join Peter Pan and The Lost Boys on this swashbuckling adventure of fairy dust, pirates and a ticking crocodile. Enjoy laughs a plenty with live music, flying and audience participation. Remember: never grow up and always believe in fairies.
Recommended Age: 3+
(all ages welcome)


10/ The Nutcracker and the Mouse King, Gilbert White’s House, Selborne Sat Dec 9

ETA Hoffman’s Christmas classic comes to life in this enchanting mix of magic, music and love-conquering-all. When Dr Drosselmeyer brings her family a Christmas present, Marie is captivated by the little nutcracker. But after everyone has gone to bed, strange things begin to happen. Why are the dolls coming to life? And why are mice pouring up from the floorboards? As the monstrous Mouse King orders an attack Marie fears the worst but, harnessing his toy troops, the Nutcracker leads them bravely into battle. Will they win through and can an evil curse on the Nutcracker be broken? Find out in Michael Whitmore’s captivating new adaptation for Quantum Theatre. Suitable for all ages.


11/ The Snowman, Mayflower Theatre, Southampton, 10 Jan – 14 Jan 2018

Image credit: Tristram Kenton

When a young boy’s snowman comes to life on Christmas Eve, the two set off on a night-time quest for adventure. They meet Father Christmas, dancing penguins, reindeer and crowds of The Snowman’s friends, but will they escape evil Jack Frost and get back home for Christmas morning? Based on Raymond Briggs’ much-loved book and featuring Howard Blake’s classic song Walking In The Air, this enchanting live show has thrilled audiences in the West End and throughout the world since first appearing on stage over twenty years ago.


Words: Mary Malyon

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