Widow Twankey (Ian McKellen) and Dim Sum (Frances Barber) in Aladdin

Ian McKellen, Roger Allam, Maureen Lipman, Frances Barber in
A Holiday Pantomime

17 December 2004 - 13 January 2005

7 December 2005 - 22 January 2006

Aladdin is one of the most famous tales from the celebrated collection of stories The Thousand and One Nights. The story of Aladdin and His Wonderful Lamp was the source for the first stage version at Covent Garden in 1788. The famous clown Grimaldi played in it in 1813, and in 1861 ‘Widow Twankey' made her first appearance as a character. Since then Aladdin has been a permanent feature of the English pantomime scene.

New version by Bille Brown
Original Score by Gareth Valentine
Directed by Sean Mathias
Design by John Napier
Choreographer - Wayne McGregor
Costumes - Mark Bouman
Lighting - David Hersey
Sound - Fergus O'Hare
Orchestrations - Chris Walker
Musical Director - Kevin Amos


"I Believe in You"
Music by Elton John
Lyrics by Lee Hall

"Ian McKellen is the mother of all Twankeys. A wicked, comic pleasure"  — Evening Standard

"No ordinary festive spectacle. A sophisticated panto, lovingly restored by a theatrical aristocracy who treasure the form as a staple of British theatre" — Sunday Times

Words from Ian McKellen
Programme 2004 (PDF)
Programme 2005 (PDF)
Photos from the 2004 Production
Photos from the 2005 Production
About the 2004 Production
Next Play: A Restoration Gala

Acting Shakespeare Ian McKellen DVD