Belgrade boosts Christmas for record number of people


Coventry’s Belgrade Theatre has reported that its latest pantomime, Jack and the Beanstalk brightened up Christmas for almost 40,000 people, making it the theatre’s most successful panto in the last 10 years.

Tickets for Jack and Beanstalk, which starred Iain Lauchlan as Dame Trott, were in such demand that they completely sold out in the final week of the run. To ensure that families don’t miss out on seeing next year’s panto Aladdin, the Belgrade has added an extra week to the run, which will be performed on the Main Stage from 26 Nov 2014 through to 10 Jan 2015.

“A performance with boundless energy, fantastic scenery, wonderful costumes and a rather scary but impressive giant.” Coventry Telegraph

In addition to the 40,000 people who visited the theatre to see Jack and the Beanstalk, some of those who were spending the Christmas period in a hospital, hospice or nursing home were also able to experience the magic of panto by watching an online broadcast of the show.

Created in association with Coventry TV, a recording of Jack and the Beanstalk was streamed via the internet into a number of institutions on Boxing Day including Myton Hospice, University Hospital Coventry & Warwickshire, Leamington Spa Hospital, Rainsbrook Secure Unit for young offenders, and numerous nursing homes including Herald Lodge, Charnwood House, Brandon House and Keresley Wood.

Joan Whitaker, Play Specialist at University Hospital, Coventry said: “We would like to thank the Belgrade Theatre for streaming the panto to the children in our hospital over Christmas. The children thoroughly enjoyed watching it and found it very funny. It was a fantastic idea and really helped bring Christmas cheer to the Children’s Unit.”

Joanna Reid, the Belgrade’s Executive Director added, “We were delighted at the success of this year’s panto which was full of sparkle and fun and was hugely enjoyed by local audiences. We were overwhelmed by the generosity of the public and local businesses whose donations helped us to stream a performance of the show into hospitals and enable families facing financial hardship to take a break from their worries and take part in some festive fun. It is very heartening that so many people wanted to help spread good cheer to others in difficult circumstances. It’s been a really busy Christmas at the Belgrade because our B2 Xmas Show for adults, Oh No It Isn’t! was also playing to packed houses. We’re grateful for everybody’s support and we’re already planning how to make next Christmas at the Belgrade even better!”

“Jack and the Beanstalk has everything you would expect and want from a pantomime.” What’s On Stage 

The online broadcast of Jack and the Beanstalk was funded by the Belgrade’s hugely successful Give the Gift of Theatre campaign, which saw over 1,000 local businesses and individuals donate nearly £9,000. As well as funding the online broadcast, the campaign also helped the theatre to provide almost 400 panto tickets to families facing financial hardship.

The Belgrade’s Give the Gift of Theatre campaign will continue to run throughout the year to provide people who are facing challenging circumstances with free tickets to suitable shows at the Belgrade. A registered charity itself, the theatre provides the tickets for half their value and the remaining amount is raised/donated. To make a donation to the Belgrade’s Give the Gift of Theatre campaign visit


Cheaper early bird tickets for Aladdin are available now from the Belgrade’s Box Office on 024 7655 3055 priced from £13.50 to £22, with child tickets from £8.75. Family tickets are priced from £31 to £60. Cheaper tickets can be purchased online via