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GATESHEAD’S BIGGEST PANTO SET FOR CHRISTMAS RUN
‘Whickham Pantodrome' at Gateshead Whickham School
Thursday 17th December until Christmas Eve 2015
A brand new professional panto is being launched in the Gateshead area for Christmas 2015. NS Pantomimes are behind the exciting magical fairytale, Cinderella which is hoped to be the first of many popular pantomimes being staged in a specially constructed theatre venue in Whickham, Gateshead.
The new theatre setup is being created within a sports venue in Whickham School which will allow over 9,000 local residents, schools and groups to enjoy festive entertainment on their doorstep this December. The greatest fairytale of them all will run from Thursday 17th December until Christmas Eve.
The project is being produced by local lad Jamie Gray who has been keen to bring larger scale productions to this side of the river for many years. “I’ve been involved in theatre from a really young age, I produced my first ever show when I was in school - It was a bit ropey as you’d expect but since then I’ve had huge ambition and drive to continue to produce bigger and better things”.
Jamie is creating the show in collaboration with local writer and composer Thomas Whalley. Thomas, who has recently finished training at Associated Studios in London, and a run on London’s West End as part of the cast of She Loves Me at the Landor Theatre, will be putting pen to paper writing this year’s rags to riches tale. Tom stresses "Panto is in my blood, my grandma used to produce pantomimes back in the good old days! I relocated to London last year but I am delighted to be able to be writing this years show. It’s great writing for your home town - Geordies have their own sense of humour which is different to anywhere else in the country so it’s great having an amazing local cast of performers and dancers who we know will deliver and the audience will love."
The new panto project will involve the construction of a full size stage and auditorium within a building which is currently a number of indoor sports courts. Jamie states “This is totally different to anything I’ve ever done before - we can’t just turn up to the theatre with our set and costume rails and do the show - everything has to be constructed from scratch. It’s difficult to envisage what a show will look like in an empty space, but it’s exciting. Normally I’d go into a theatre auditorium and sit and look at the stage for hours but this time round it’s all drawings on paper. I have a fantastic team behind me so I have no doubt that this pantomime will be something special and I cannot wait to share the experience with you all”
Cinderella will be a brand new version of the well-loved fairy tale, with side splitting humour, stunning sets and a range of beautiful costumes created especially for the show. Jamie adds “The public are going crazy for pantomime here, it’s unbelievable the amount of excitement it is creating between young and old - Gateshead doesn’t have it’s own large theatre so it’s amazing to be able to offer an affordable family show so close to home that will have the same production standards as some city centre venues”.
Cinderella is at the ‘Whickham Pantodrome' at Gateshead Whickham School, Burnthouse Lane, Whickham
Newcastle upon Tyne, NE16 5AR. It runs from Thursday 17th December until Christmas Eve 2015.
Tickets for Cinderella are on sale now and are available online at www.niceswan.com or by calling the booking line 0333 666 3366 or for local/group/school sales call 07741 477660. From £10.00. Special group and school discounts available.