We find out what’s in store at Ricky panto this year
The best thing about panto is the feel-good factor for all ages in the audience while the cast have a ball putting on the show. This year’s Watersmeet panto Beauty and the Beast is no exception.
Beauty and the Beast tells the story of Beauty who becomes the prisoner of a monstrous Beast in return for her father’s freedom, but can she tame the Beast and teach him to love, and be loved in return?
“It’s one of those classic moralistic French fairy tales which surprisingly adapted easily to panto structure” says Chris Jordan, Managing Director of Jordan Productions, who also wrote
the pantomime, “All the essential panto elements fit in well”
Sue Holderness (Marlene, Only Fools and Horses) fills the inevitable baddie role – Wicked Malevolent, while franglais-speaking Fairy Formidable (Sarah Jameson) redresses the balance by helping heroine, Beauty (Katie Ray), out of hot water and making sure all comes good in the end. Along the way there’s plenty of comedy, partly supplied by Dame Derriere (Kieran Sutcliffe) in a collection of crazy dresses and wacky hats as well as her son Potty Pierre (Dave Bibby).
“I enjoy watching the kids laugh hysterically” says Sue, “for many of them it is their first experience of theatre.”
Jordan, who has worked as an actor, producer, director and theatre manager and has run the production company for 25 years, knows panto inside out.
“There’s always slapstick, typically here with Dame Derriere and Potty Pierre causing chaos at the chateau. One of my favourite scenes is when the pair are washing up after banquet. There’s an awful lot of crockery broken – up to 100 plates a show, it’s so naughty the kids love it!”
Sue makes a perfect wicked witch
“ The villain of the story has always been best suited to me – when I have played the nicer characters, I am always grumpy at home, but when I play the evil character, my children say I am a delight!”
Expect plenty of glitz, magic and live music too
“We have a great live band.” adds Chris Jordan, “Music is so important, it’s not just the songs, it creates tension, magic and the upbeat tempo set by percussion is integral to the comedy. The score reflects traditional music theatre but there’s something for Justin Bieber fans who can’t stop singing Despacito – and a bit of Rag ‘n’ Bone man aswell.”
“Jordan Productions’ shows are always fresh and energetic with a real sense of quality” sums up Watersmeet manager Josh Sills, “ I’m excited about this panto, it’s not long until the first performance now, We start in a few weeks time!”
Beauty and the Beast Thursday 7 Dec – Sun 31 Dec.
Tickets on 01923 711063 or at www.watersmeet.co.uk
More details opposite