It’s generally an unwritten rule of thumb that you don’t speak about “the C-word” before November. Then the whole world changed and the “C-word” changed with it. Christmas became COVID-19, and in time one became synonymous with the other.

Looking back on Christmas 2021, a slight tweak to Wham’s smash seasonal hit sums it all up nicely: change, “Last Christmas I Gave You My Heart” to “Last Christmas I Gave You COVID-19” and you’re on to a winner.

Going on the trajectory of the year so far with regard to gatherings and events, things are looking much jollier for the upcoming festive period.

Not to dwell too much on the negative, but last year very many pantomimes were cancelled due to the spike in COVID-19 cases as the Christmas period rolled in. The timing of this meant that most shows were pretty much ready to take to the stage.

However, that hasn’t dampened spirits this year one bit, with a host of shows around the country to entertain all the family.

We’re bringing you a flavour of these pantomimes nice and early, as often they sell out.


The Jungle Book, Dublin

27 November ’22 – 8 January ’23: Dublin’s Gaiety Theatre is aiming to help you “Forget about your worries and your strife” at this year’s panto, The Jungle Book. Mowgli will swing and sing his way through this jungle journey. Filled with panto monkey-business and hiss-sterical shenanigans, there will be plenty of jungle friends along the way, plus a few familiar animal crackers. Tickets are priced from €21. For more see


Cinderella, Cork

3 December ’22 – 15 January ’23: The Everyman, Cork has chosen Cinderella as this year’s panto, putting a modern twist on a classic tale. Set in none other than Cork, Cinders has a chance encounter with Prince William (aka Liam) at the Farmer’s Market.

Cinderella is this year's panto at the Everyman, Cork.

Liam is the heir to the throne of the Corkonians. And her stepmother and stepsisters, Kim and Kourtney, aren’t happy. Tickets are priced from €26. For more see


Peter Pan, Limerick

16 December ’22 – 3 January ’23: This year’s production of Peter Pan marks 10 years of pantos at University Concert Hall, Limerick (UCH). Join the boy who never grew up, together with his friends Wendy and Tinkerbell, as they travel to Never Never Land to take on the hilariously horrible Captain Hook and his band of (pretty useless) pirates. Fair City’s Johnny Ward will play Captain Hook. Tickets are priced from €20. For more see


Aladdin, Belfast

25 November ’22 – 31 December ’23: GBL productions are once again returning to the Waterfront Hall in Belfast, this time with a production of Aladdin. Will the Genie of the lamp grant Aladdin three wishes and save him from the clutches of the evil Abanazar? Will Aladdin and Princess Jasmine end up living happily ever after? The show aims to have laugh-out-loud comedy, colourful scenery, beautiful costumes and plenty of boos and hisses for all the family to enjoy. Tickets are priced from £17. For more see


Nutcracker Sweeties, Donegal

6 December: If you’re looking for something a little different to a panto this year, then this production of Nutcracker Sweeties is a great option. By Ballet Ireland, this show is a reimagining of a Christmas classic ballet and is suitable for all the family. Set on Christmas Eve, Ciara and her brother Fionn are on a shopping trip to a famous department store in Dublin. They wander off from their parents and the magic of Nutcracker and Christmas begins! Tickets at An Grianán Theatre, Letterkenny are priced from €22. Ballet Ireland are touring all around Ireland with this production across November and December. For more dates see

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