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What are the best pantomimes of 2018?

Clockwise from top left: Dick Whittington in Mold, Mother goose Cracks One Out in London, Sleepin' Cutie in Stirling, Jack and the Beanstalk in Colchester, Robin Hood and the Babes in the Wood in Nottingham and Robinson Crusoe in London. Photos: PBG Studios/Mihaela Bodlovic/Scott Rylander/Pamela Raith/Robert Day

With panto season now underway, here’s a list of the best shows of the year so far, as reviewed by The Stage’s team of experts. This list will be updated throughout December.

London pantomimes


★★★★★ Aladdin – Hackney Empire

Aladdin review at Hackney Empire, London – ‘drop-dead fabulous’

★★★★★ Mother Goose Cracks One Out – Above the Stag

Mother Goose Cracks One Out review at Above the Stag, London – ‘blissfully irreverent’

★★★★ Dick Whittington – Lyric Hammersmith

Dick Whittington review at Lyric Hammersmith, London – ‘colourful and warm-hearted’

UK pantomimes

★★★★★ Snow White – Towngate Theatre, Basildon

Snow White review at Towngate Theatre, Basildon – ‘pitch-perfect pantomime’

★★★★★ Goldilocks and the Three Bears – Theatre Royal, Newcastle-upon-Tyne

Goldilocks and the Three Bears review at Theatre Royal, Newcastle-upon-Tyne – ‘outstanding’

★★★★★ Aladdin – Alhambra Theatre, Bradford

Aladdin review at the Alhambra Theatre, Bradford – ‘panto perfection’

★★★★★ Cinderella – Yvonne Arnaud Theatre, Guildford

Cinderella review at Yvonne Arnaud Theatre, Guildford – ‘lavish and entertaining’


★★★★ Beauty and the Beast – King’s Theatre, Edinburgh

Beauty and the Beast review at King’s Theatre, Edinburgh – ‘a beauty of a panto’

★★★★ Aladdin – Cambridge Arts Theatre

Aladdin review at Cambridge Arts Theatre – ‘sweet and warm-hearted’

★★★★ Beauty and the Beast – Salisbury Playhouse

Beauty and the Beast review at Salisbury Playhouse – ‘handsome, female-led panto’

★★★★ Robin Hood and the Babes in the Wood – Nottingham Playhouse

Robin Hood and the Babes in the Wood review at Nottingham Playhouse – ‘radiant, warm-hearted panto’

★★★★ Dick Whittington – Theatr Clwyd, Mold

Dick Whittington review at Theatr Clwyd, Mold – ‘heart-warming panto with a rock’n’roll twist’

★★★★ Cinderella – New Wolsey Theatre, Ipswich

Cinderella review at New Wolsey Theatre, Ipswich – ‘exuberant and enjoyable’

★★★★ Sleepin’ Cutie – Macrobert Arts Centre, Stirling

Sleepin’ Cutie review at Macrobert Arts Centre, Stirling – ‘expertly staged’

★★★★ Mammy Goose – Tron Theatre, Glasgow

Mammy Goose review at Tron Theatre, Glasgow – ‘progressive and entertaining’