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And that’s big news for Liverpool’s M&S Bank Arena which isn’t just about to head into a busy Christmas of shows, it’s looking at an amazing line-up for 2021.
Audiences are going to be limited to 1,000 and socially-distanced in households while we’re under the new restrictions, although hopefully we can move down to Tier 1 soon.
In the meantime, it’s definitely beginning to look a lot like Christmas at the Arena and, of course, it wouldn’t feel anywhere near as festive without a panto.
Jack and the Beanstalk will be bringing panto to the auditorium from December 18-27, with X Factor and I’m a Celeb’s Jake Quickenden in the starring role as Jack, alongside Radio City’s Leanne Campbell and comedy favourite Bippo. Book tickets for the Pantones here.
There’ll be three shows a day, for reduced audiences of around 500, and as well as social distancing there’ll be a one-way system in place around the venue and foyer. For security reasons, anyone going along is asked not to take regular bags with them but to take any essentials and valuables in a see-through plastic bag instead.
While panto opens on December 18 in the auditorium, in the main Arena space there’s the Classic Rock Show Christmas Party on the same night, with a capacity of 1,000.
And, on the 19 – and now for an extra date on the 20 – Rumours of Fleetwood Mac are back with one of the world’s most popular tribute shows.
“We understand that, as a venue, the nature of what we do means we will be the last to be fully-operational but being able to put on shows like the panto in a Covid-secure way and to have gigs in the Arena again, it feels great to get to that point.
“We’ve got the Classic Rock Show Christmas Party on the same day the panto opens, then on the Saturday and Sunday while the panto is still running we’ll have Rumours of Fleetwood Mac who’ve just added a second date due to how well the first one sold.
“We’d already sold 50% of tickets for the panto because those customers have trusted that we’d get there, and the measures we’d put in place gave them that confidence to book. Now with the Tier 2 news we’re sure those ticket sales will really ramp up.
“The panto is important to us because it’s a big part of people’s Christmas and having it allows us to keep that part of our Christmas normal which really matters. And, other than the social distancing, it’s still very much the full panto experience with all the scene and costume changes, so we’re really proud that we’ve been able to put that together with the producer.”
The Christmas shows will kick off an incredible line-up of events right through 2021 with highlights including Stormzy and Genesis both in April, Little Mix and McFly in May, Diana Ross in June, JLS in July, Simple Minds in August, Dua Lipa in September, Blondie and Steps in November.
“Our diary of upcoming events has never been so busy, and it’s looking really exciting.” says Ben.
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