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Some Things for the Weekend

It’s panto season: here are my top picks

Vlad againWe are getting into panto season (Oh, yes we are!) so this week’s selection of shows to see includes a few of the best.

Theatre
SNOW WHITE
King’s Theatre, Edinburgh  Until Sunday 17th January.   Times vary

Of course, we all know that the title of any pantomime is largely irrelevant.  However, this year the resident Edinburgh Kings trio of Allan Stewart, Grant Stott and Andy Gray take on the story of Snow White and the Seven Dwarves.  Any regular Kings panto fans will know pretty much what to expect.

Theatre
SNOW WHITE
King’s Theatre, Glasgow   Friday 4th December to Sunday 10th January  Times vary  

This would appear to be a bumper year in Scotland for actors of a smaller size, as The Glasgow Kings also bring their take on the Snow White myth. Rab C. Nesbitt himself, Gregor Fisher is joined by comedian Des Clarke and Balamory’s Juliet Cadzow in a cast every bit as strong as the Edinburgh Kings’.  The question is: who will have the better dwarves ?

Theatre
ALI BAWBAG AND THE FOUR TEA LEAVES
Oran Mor, Glasgow   Until Wednesday 23rd December  Times vary

This lunchtime pantomime is the seasonal offering from Oran Mor’s A Play, A Pie and A Pint.  Written by Wildcat stalwart Dave Anderson, the show’s title alone is worth the ticket price.  And you get a pie and a pint too.

Theatre
PETER PAN
His Majesty’s Theatre, Aberdeen  Until 3rd January 1.45 and 7 pm

Who needs a pantomime dame, when instead you can have the real-life Grande Dame of Scottish comedy Elaine C Smith?  There are few better exponents of knockabout pantomime humour. Even if the rest of the cast were to be average, this would still be watchable.

Comedy
THE EDINBURGH CHRISTMAS LECTURES
The Stand Comedy Club, Edinburgh   Saturday 5th December at 4.30

An alternative approach to Christmas every Saturday afternoon in December, hosted by the brilliantly talented Andrew Learmonth, a man who redefines the term “polymath”.  He is a comedian, writer, political activist, journalist and even on one occasion a robot. These festive shows attract guest appearances from some of the finest acts on the comedy circuit, and from a few oddball artistes too  Anything could happen, and probably will.

Cinema
SUNSET SONG
On General Release from Friday 4th December

If you’re fed-up with too much laughter, this is the movie to sort you out. Lewis Crassic Gibbon’s moving, and at times heart-breakingly sad, novel about the coming of age of you girl in North-East Scotland during World War I was one of the most significant novels of the twentieth century.  Its television adaptation by the BBC is the 1970’s reduced my teenage self to tears, such was the poignancy of its writing. If this modern adaptation for the large screen comes anywhere near to matching that quality, then it will be one of the major critical hits of this year.

Theatre
THE WITCHES
Dundee Rep    Until 31st December 7pm (Matinees at 2.30)

If, like me, you prefer a “seasonal play”, rather than a pantomime, Dundee Rep stage adaptation of the Roald Dhal classic should be right up your street. And if your street happens to be in Dundee, all the better.

Music
C DUNCAN
Lemon Tree, Aberdeen Thursday 3rd
Pleasance, Edinburgh Friday 4th
Glasgow Art School, Saturday 5th December

The young multi-talented Scottish musician Christopher Duncan has a huge future, whether is rock or classical music, as he excels at both.  Classicly trained at the Royal Conservatoire Of Scotland, his compositions have been performed by ensembles throughout the UK.

Vladimir McTavish will be appearing at Monkey Barrel Comedy at The Beehive in Edinburgh Friday 4th and Saturday 5th December and at Aberdeen Winter Festival on Sunday 6th December

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