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A production shot of Branar's How To Catch A Star. Branar/Anita Murphy
family event guide

6 magical theatre events to book in for this Christmas - from Oliver Jeffers to a panto on wheels

Here’s what’s on around the country next month.

WE’VE ALL BEEN there. You see something great advertised, make a mental note to book it and then you’re filled with regret when, two days before the event, you remember to buy tickets and – surprise, surprise – they’re all sold out. 

Get ahead of the crowd this Christmas and book in to see some of the best Christmas pantomimes and plays with a difference that the country has to offer.

Ready? Oh yes you are!


How To Catch A Star at The Ark: Branar Téatar do Pháistí returns to The Ark with a heart-warming adaptation of Irish author Oliver Jeffers’ best-selling picture book. The show is non-verbal and deaf-friendly and is sure to warm even the grumpiest Grinches among us. There will also be a selection of ‘relaxed performances’ with fewer noise restrictions.

Suits: 4+. When: December 5 – 30. Where: The Ark, Temple Bar, Dublin 2. Costs: €12.50 per ticket. Find out more information and book here.

The Bus That Stole Christmas Tour: Take a panto on wheels, put it in Ireland’s only custom-built Christmas bus and you’ve got The Bus That Stole Christmas Tour. With the letters missing and Santa sick, guests have to help his elves save the magic of Christmas.

Suits: All ages. When: December 3 – 24. Where: Starts and ends outside Flanagan’s on O’Connell St, Dublin 2. Costs: €15 per seat. Find out more information and book here.

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Elf Jr – The Musical at glór Ennis: Family-favourite Elf is being brought to the stage by Clare Youth Musical Society this Christmas. With songs throughout as Buddy the Elf travels from the North Pole to New York to find his dad, we challenge you not to feel festive afterwards.

Suits: The whole family. When: December 8 & 9. Where: glór Theatre, Causeway Link, Ennis. Costs: €10-€15. Book tickets here.


A Jingle Bell Journey at the National Opera House: An interactive Christmas adventure with plenty of music along the way, A Jingle Bell Journey will keep the little ones laughing and entertained throughout. There are two weekday showtimes, with an extra 1pm show available for school groups on request.

Suits: 3-8 years. When: December 5 – 16. Where: National Opera House, High St, Wexford. Costs: €12. Find out more information and book here.


Jack & The Beanstalk at Íontas Castleblaney: It wouldn’t be Christmas without going to see a good old-fashioned panto. Jack & The Beanstalk will be at Iontas Castleblaney for six days – meaning there’s plenty of opportunities for fee-fi-fo-fun for all of the family.

Suits: The whole family. When: December 7- 12. Where: Íontas Arts & Community Resource Centre, Conabury, Castleblayney. Costs: €13 – €16, school group concession applies. Buy tickets here.


Santa Babies at The Hawk’s Well Theatre: The final Music For Babies performance of 2018 will have a fitting seasonal theme, and there will be plenty of mince pies on hand for hungry parents, grandparents and carers. Keep the little ones (and yourself) entertained with Sinead Conway and Dave Flynn’s rendition of festive musical favourites specifically designed for babies, toddlers and young children.

Suits: Babies, toddlers and young children. When: 22 December, 11am and 1pm. Where: Hawk’s Well Theatre, 2 Temple St, Sligo. Costs: €5 (under 1s free). Find out more here.

Want to win a family day out to iSkate and Funderland at the RDS? Enter our competition right here – and don’t forget to subscribe to our Family Newsletter below!

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