Birmingham Pub Theatre Bags UK Premiere of Off-Broadway Hit

A pub theatre in Birmingham City Centre will be bringing 2011’s hit off-Broadway Christmas comedy to Birmingham theatre-goers this Christmas for its European Premiere.

Ginna Hoben

Ginna Hoben

The Twelve Dates of Christmas, a one-woman comedy billed as ‘Bridget Jones meets Sex and the City, but with no Darcy or Mr Big in sight!’ comes to the Old Joint Stock Theatre opposite Birmingham Cathedral from 5th-15th December.

Theatre Manager Tim Hodgson is very proud of the catch: ‘Just three days after we agreed the deal with the playwright, Ginna Hoben, the play was picked up for publication. If we’d contacted her a week later, it would have been out of our price range and only bigger theatres could have got it. The publishers are apparently quite annoyed that this little pub theatre in England has the European rights to their show this Christmas.’

‘We wanted something warm and funny for the period, a bit of escapist entertainment, a proper Christmas theatre show. There are so few Christmas plays around, especially new ones.’

This echoes Ginna Hoben’s own motivation for writing the play in the first place: ‘I wrote The Twelve Dates of Christmas simply because I looked around one Christmas Season and noticed that while there existed several one or two-man Christmas plays which are produced year after year at regional theatres all over the country, there did not, to my knowledge, exist a one-woman Christmas play. This would be my mission.’

‘It stems from two separate periods of time in my life. The first is one in which I was newly single and it seemed like everyone wanted to set me up on a date. The other is a year in my life when I vowed to go out with any person who asked me.’

And this could be the start of a trend of off-Broadway hits coming to pub theatres in the second city. ‘We’re already signed up to put on ‘Rent’ next Christmas,’ says Tim. ‘Now I’m looking at another couple of New York shows to bring to the theatre along with it, so we can have a full Broadway season!’

‘The Twelve Dates of Christmas’ runs from 5th-15th December at the Old Joint Stock Theatre, 4 Temple Row West, Birmingham B2 5NY. Tickets are priced at £12, and are BOGOF for the opening two nights (5th & 6th December).

For tickets call 0121 200 0946 or go to