I Love Christmas

REVIEW for the Herald Express By Paul Levie

I Love Christmas - Babbacombe Theatre *****

The theatre where it's Christmas already - and everything is dazzling - 'This slap-up treat is great value for money and will keep you warm, happy and full of cheer'

I’m just about to sit down to my first turkey dinner of the season. So, what better way to get in the mood than a huge portion of ‘I Love Christmas’ at the Babbacombe Theatre?

Tasty treats, hot stuff and a mega helping of humour ensure that this year’s Christmas offering will go down well with Babbacombe regulars and newcomers alike. The MasterChef himself; compere, comic and songster Andy Oakley puts in an incredible shift, dishing up lashings of laughs between almost every act, giving the show’s singers and dancers plenty of time to change into their amazing array of costumes.

For starters we were treated to the stunning voice of Claire Waring throughout the fast-paced show. What a singer. And going down just as nicely were the meaty tones of Paul Fordham, who spends the rest of the year wowing audiences all over the country with his solo shows.

Adding more than a little spice to the proceedings were the tasty singers and dancers of Danze Fantazy – who look and sound much better than they spell! And some eye candy for the ladies came in the shape of singers Joe Harris and Joe Stone, whose smooth and creamy voices gave their audiences their just desserts – and more.

So, I think you will agree with me that no Christmas festivities would be complete without this feast of fun and fantasy. At a time when prices are rising this slap-up treat is great value for money and will keep you warm, happy, and full of cheer. Sorry for all the food puns, folks. I shouldn’t write reviews when I’m hungry.




We may have only just celebrated Halloween and the pumpkins barely carved, but Babbacombe Theatre has already moved swiftly on to its Christmas show, aptly titled I Love Christmas.

The show is without a doubt a real festive feast!

Babbacombe Theatre clearly knows its audience and caters for their every need from laugh-out-loud comedy courtesy of host Andy Oakley to quality vocals from the very able cast.

Sprinkle some stage magic, some stonkingly good choreography and dance as well as some dazzling costumes and you have a sensational variety show complete with a modern twist.

Classic Christmas tracks make up a fair amount of the set and got the audience in the mood for some festive fun.

Starting with Shakin’ Stevens Merry Christmas Everyone, the audience were singing a long from the get-go. Mariah Carey’s belter All I Want for Christmas Is You and Wham’s Last Christmas also feature in this spectacle.

However, if you are ‘bah humbug’ don’t despair, there’s plenty of other elements of the show to love.

It’s brought bang up to date with tunes from the likes of Dua Lipa and an edgy choreographed routine to Kate Bush’s Running Up That Hill, which was recently re-released to a new generation thanks to the hit TV show Stranger Things. The troupe of dancers were absolutely flawless thanks to choreography courtesy of Lucy O’Neill.

Look out for the Sister Act section and the sea shanty, which were particular crowd pleasers.

Lead vocalist Claire Waring is a star and performs each number with power and conviction. The stage is clearly where she feels at home.  

Paul Fordham is also a natural showman and, like Claire, hit every note with ease and is a real pro. Their duets of Endless Love and When a Child if Born both really packed punch and despite being challenging songs, they did both songs justice. Their harmonies were on the money and effortless.

Andy Oakley is an absolute cracker of a compere and with more than 40 years of experience, there’s no doubt he’s honed his craft. He knows how to work the crowd and his tomfoolery, clever sketches and general warm persona make him the perfect compere for this variety show.

Lucy Samuels and Sophie Beresford, as well as Joe Stone and Joe Harris, make up the wonderfully talented cast.

Christmas may be six weeks away, but it definitely got me feeling Christmassy and left me with a smile on my face... If anyone is after a great Christmas pressie for their loved ones, a ticket to the show is definitely a good idea!


RadioEXE Reviewed by Matt Rogers

WHAT A SHOW!! 🎅🏻  Thoroughly enjoyed I Love Christmas - it exceeded all expectations! I went to see the famous Rockettes Christmas show in New York a few years ago, and this was genuinely just as good

Hear Matt's review in full ON THIS LINK


GOOGLE REVIEWS - October 2022

J. Clark. ***** Went to see I Love Christmas, Wednesday 26th October. The best show I have seen for years. Compere very funny, singers extremely good, dancers very lovely. Highly recommend.

T. Howard. ***** A fabulous evening in an old fashion theatre. Watched 'I Love Christmas' with the family and all thoroughly enjoyed it. People should make the effort to see more shows like this one!

P. Gabbitas. ***** Excellent show, non-stop entertainment from start to finish cannot praise it enough


AH from Stoke-on-Trent. ***** Well, what another great show, thank you everyone! The singing, dancing, comedy and of course Mr Andy Oakley was fabulous as always. Definitely got us into the Christmas spirit.

Julie M from Torquay. ***** I know it’s a little early for Christmas, but this show is fantastic! So, anyone looking for a pre-Christmas/Christmas show this is the one! Andy Oakley is brilliant, funny and knows how to entertain the audience! The singers and dancers were also brilliant. Definitely recommend.

A Smethers from Brighton ***** - Thank you to all the lovely performers who entertained us. You worked so very hard, and the costumes were beautiful you certainly put us into the Christmas spirit. It's our 3rd trip to your venue.

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