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There’s even a gig especially for under 7s with punk and rock classics mixed in with Christmas favourites … all played by a band dressed as animals!
And, so nobody has to miss out on shows they really want to see, picks from the programme are available to stream until New Year’s Day via Unity’s online Winter Watch, with all tickets sales going directly to the artists as an added Christmas bonus.
After a year of working closely with local performers, writers and the wider creative community through tough Covid times, supporting more than 800 artists, Unity has put together a Christmas festival showcase.
Instead of the traditional one show running for a few weeks, it has 15 different events culminating in a seasonal celebration of song with the Sense of Sound singers on December 22.
The festival launched with the theatre’s first free night market, transforming the venue into a winter wonderland of gift stalls, music, food and drink, which proved such a success it’s already booked for a comeback at Easter 2022.
Now it’s focused on cabaret and music this week ahead of a weekend of fun family shows.
This Thursday sees a Festive Folk Night with Us Four, four Liverpool singer-songwriters collaborating in one unique performance.
That’s followed on Friday by Nana Funk’s Stocking Filler, as Liverpool’s favourite all-singing, all-dancing nana welcomes special guests for a night of chat, songs and plenty of laughs.
The weekend is all about giving kids a pre-Christmas treat, so on Saturday they can enjoy a gig with fabulous animal band, The Rockin’ Rhinos, who’ll be belting out hits with a seasonal twist like a Little Donkey/Mustang Sally mash-up, plus there’ll be face-painting and Christmas crafts too.
The Rockin’ Rhinos are putting on two shows, at 11.30am and 2.30pm, and the morning one is a relaxed performance, so the music’s turned down, lights stay on, and the capacity is reduced.
Unity fans with even smaller children can join in the fun with Meet Me A Tree on Tuesday December 21, when a Christmas tree will take centre stage for three multi-sensory sessions where little ones can sit on beanbags with their families and experience their first interactive opera.
Throughout the festival, Unity’s bar will be all dressed for Christmas and serving mulled wine – plus a non-alcoholic version – and festive cocktails, and it’s still open for hotdesking for anyone looking for a lovely, relaxed space to work.
For audience members who missed a show in person, Unity’s Winter Watch means they can catch-up on selected performances including some from the Christmas festival.
“Throughout this year we’ve tried to make lots of our live shows available to watch online and from December 15 to January 1 we’re going to make this year’s programme available one last time,” says the Unity’s Rachael Welsh.
“During those two weeks, people will be able to log on and see about 10 different shows including Sense of Sound Singers and Nana Funk and artists will keep all of the ticket sales so it’s a great way for us all to be able to celebrate Christmas together.”
Article by Dawn Collinson
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