Panto season must be approaching!
Last week I took a stroll up to John Lewis in Nottingham’s intu Victoria Centre for a very special event which always marks the impending arrival of the festive season and a very special show at the Nottingham Playhouse – the Christmas pantomime!
This years production, directed by the much-loved and seasoned Playhouse performer Kenneth Alan Taylor, tells the story of Dick Whittington – a pantomime I remember watching myself as a child right here in Nottingham. With a stellar cast performing and a well-known story to play out to eager audiences, it’s a recipe for success in 2015 for a tradition that stretches back through the decades of festive entertainment in the city.
The story of Dick Whittington, if you’re a little unfamiliar, follows the journey of a country boy who endeavors to seek his fortune in the big wide world. He embarks on a journey to the city of London, where he hopes wealth and good fortune await both him and his rat-catching cat. Of course, I can’t spoil the ending for you, but there’s trouble and difficulties along the way for the pair, as they embark on an adventure together to see if the streets really are paved with gold…
The launch of the show at John Lewis treated passers-by to a rare preview of what’s to come this winter in the latest production. Two of the cast were dressed in their full panto gear, ready and eager to meet the public, pose for photos and answer questions ahead of the shows curtain call on 27th November. First stop was photos in the windows of Nottingham’s well-known department store, with an elaborate backdrop and props to accompany the actors. It was amazing how peoples curiosities got the better of them – with more and more stopping for a quick peek and capturing a rare snap shot of the characters in public gaze before the show arrives on the big stage.
We then ventured through the heart of John Lewis, up two flights of escalators, to the Christmas department, with trees twinkling and decorations adorning a large section of the shop floor to bring a spot of festive cheer to a surprisingly mild October day. Again, the cast posed for press photos and greeted the occasional passer-by. One lucky little girl even managed to get into a few of the publicity shots as her eyes lit up at the sight of Dick Whittington and the Christmas wonder being created before her eyes.
It’s always a guarantee that if Kenneth Alan Taylor is directing the Nottingham Playhouse pantomime that the show will dazzle and amaze audiences, no matter what the age. Dick Whittington promises to deliver the usual elaborate sets and costumes, intertwined with enchanting musical numbers and an adventure to capture the wildest of imaginations.
So, make sure you don’t miss your chance to see this years Nottingham Playhouse pantomime, showing from 27th November to 16th January 2016. Tickets are on sale at the box office and on the Nottingham Playhouse website, where you can also find further information on what to expect this festive season.