A TILLICOULTRY actor will help bring back Disco as Macrobert Arts Centre gears up for a Christmas of jolly good shows.

Dylan Wood, a former Forefront Stage School performer, is appearing in the Stirling venue's panto Aladdin - with the classic story being given a new twist.

This December the Macrobert will be hosting a range of shows, with something for everyone to enjoy in the run up to the holidays. 

Julie Ellen, Artistic Director of Macrobert Arts Centre, said: “Getting ready for Christmas at Macrobert is like organising the best party ever, and it really is a treat to have dear friends, and some disco tunes, to be setting up the festive fun with."

First, get ready for a panto like no other that is sure to have its audiences dancing in their seats as they "oh no you won't" their way through a disco retelling of the classic tale of Aladdin. 

Get ready to join the McTwank family in the town that Stirling Stella almost forgot - Discotopia. Here lives widow Marge O'Reen McTwank, owner of the last laundrette in town.

Her oldest daughter, Aladdin, is wildly in love with Prince Jasper but can love survive the grease stains and smell of fabric conditioner? 

And if love's trials and tribulations weren't enough, The Demon King has arrived in town claiming himself to be a long-lost relative of the McTwank family, and all he wants for Christmas is some rusty old lamp.

Written and directed by Jonny McKnight, who also stars as Widow McTwank, Aladdin will be lighting up Macrobert’s Mainhouse from Friday, December 1 to Sunday, December 31. 

Starring alongside Jonny will be a star-studded cast including Robbie Jack, known for appearing as Jacko in Garry Tank Commander; Helen McAlpine, whose screen appearances include Scot Squad, Outlander and Waterloo Road; Amy Conachan, who audiences might recognise from Hollyoaks; and Tillicoultry’s Dylan Wood, who stars as the new Prince on the Stirling Stella block. 

The cast is completed by Betty Valencia in the title role, and Ryan Towart and Kara Swinney.

In addition to Aladdin, Eric The Elf, a fun-filled, interactive, inspiring musical adventure with lots of laughs and songs for wee ones to join in with this Christmas, will also take to the stage.

First produced and presented by the Citizens Theatre, this very special show invites young audiences to join Eric on his adventure to save Christmas.

With BSL and relaxed performances on offer, and reduced ticket prices for nurseries and playgroups of more than 10 children, this is a show that’s sure to wow those aged five and under.

Handmade 2023, Macrobert’s annual exhibition of some of Scotland’s best makers and artists, will return from November 27 to January 7, 2024. The perfect place to find something special to give to family and friends at Christmas, this pop-up market will have a fantastic array of gifts by Scotland’s Artists and Makers.

Macrobert’s cinema will also be filled with festive spirit this Christmas, as the Royal Opera House’s production of The Nutcracker hits the big screen from December 12 to 17.

Peter Wright’s much-loved production for The Royal Ballet, with gorgeous period designs by Julia Trevelyan Oman, keeps true to the spirit of this festive ballet classic, combining the thrill of the fairy tale with spectacular dancing.

Join Clara at a delightful Christmas Eve party that becomes a magical adventure once everyone else is tucked up in bed.

Marvel at the brilliance of Tchaikovsky’s score, as Clara and her enchanted Nutcracker fight the Mouse King and visit the Sugar Plum Fairy in the glittering Kingdom of Sweets.

The new film Wonka will be also released in cinemas this December, just in time for visitors to Macrobert’s cinema to indulge in their favourite Christmas candy as they watch Timothée Chalamet tell the story of how Willy became Wonka.

Julie added: "I’m delighted Johnny McKnight, Robert Jack, Helen McAlpine, Kara Swinney and Amy Conachan are coming back and look forward to you meeting our new pals, Ryan Towart and Tillicoultry’s very own Dylan Wood.

"I am really looking forward to seeing them, our Handmade makers, Eric and Friends, and all of you, very, very soon."

For more information and tickets, visit the Macrobert Art Centre website.