Stars from Strictly, X Factor and more to dazzle at MK Theatre

Gareth Gates stars in Footloose
Gareth Gates stars in Footloose

Why wait until Christmas for a great gift?

The wrappers have just come off the new season of shows at Milton Keynes Theatre which is brimming with sparkly goodies, writes Sammy Jones.

With all eyes looking towards September’s return of the Saturday viewing staple Strictly Come Dancing, the venue has snapped up the smash hit extravaganza Keep Dancing, starring 2015’s memorable winners, Jay and Aliona.

It’s high-energy, fast-paced and fab-u-lous, darling!

Fellow Strictly pro’s Anya Garnis and Robin Windsor are also on the billing for the show which arrives next month (Sept 6-10).

Another Strictly star (not pro, though you’d never know) was Georgia May Foote, who when not giving fancy footwork on the dancefloor, used to clatter on the cobbles of Coronation Street. She has glammed up since then, mind you, and is starring in Breakfast at Tiffany’s,the classic tale of Holly Golightly, made famous by Audrey Hepburn.

Georgia is Holly from September 19.

One of the best performances on the MK Theatre stage this year came from X-Factor winner Alexandra Burke, who starred in The Bodyguard,and now Alexandra returns in another plump role.

This time she is the star of the show in Sister Act (Sept 26- Oct 1). What made her take the role? Possibly because performing on the stage would be a hard ‘habit’ to break...

Remember the out-of-work Sheffield steelworkers who did a cheeky dance that turned them into celebrities? The Full Monty is back, this time starring Joe Absolom, Chris Fountain, Gary Lucy, Louise Emerick, Kai Owen and Andrew Dunn.

‘Drop everything and book today,’ say those behind the show.

Another musical making a return is Footloose, this time with Gareth Gates as Willard.

We like Gareth here in the Keynes. He’s a quality performer, so that’s another night sewn up with satisfaction to the core (Oct 17-22).

Cats will leave audiences feline fine (Oct 24-29) in Andrew Lloyd-Webber’s classic and The Commitments puts sweet soul music on the stage when it arrives direct from the West End (Nov 1-5).

But what about those of you who don’t ‘do’ musicals?

Glyndebourne Opera Company stop off on their annual tour in November (8-12) with Mozart’s Don Giovanni and Puccini’s Madama Butterfly, and the wonderfully confusing Relatively Speaking comes back (Nov 14-19), this time starring Robert Powell and Liza Goddard.

Christmas ballet tiptoes in, courtesy of the English National Ballet (Nov 23-26) with Nutcracker, and then we’re back in panto season, which in 2016 stars Samantha Womack, the local lady known best for her portrayal of Ronnie Mitchell in Albert Square.

In a departure and a half, she is Queen Rat between December 8 and January 15.

The new year brings new shows, including Broadway’s smash-hit Thoroughly Modern Millie, Peter James’ Not Dead Enough, and Matthew Bourne’s The Red Shoes.

There’s more than enough to whet your appetite, and more in the new season brochure available from the venue now.

Call 0844 871 7652 and book for your choices.