Sooooo and as Christmas approaches, our theatre visiting season comes to a close.. with a very last and very special visit – THE PANTO of course. No British Christmas family theatre going is complete with a good old fashioned panto… oh no it isn’t! Oh yes it is! Oh noooo it isn’t… Oh yes……… and so it begins. The kids and I were invited along to The Secombe Theatre productions of Aladdin, one the many Polka Dot Pantomime productions!
My kids have never been to the panto before, so I wasn’t sure what they (aged 5 and almost 7) would actually think of it. As seasoned theatre go-ers, would they “get” the panto humour? Oh yes they did. It felt as if the show “needed to get going a bit” at beginning. It was a slow start, but then again, they had to warm us, the audience up first, right? Soon they had us all shouting, booing and cheering at the appropriate moments. It was a delight to see my 5yrs old totally enthralled and ready to shout “he is over there”.. whilst my almost 7yrs old took his cue from his rather enthusiastic father, shouting and clapping all the way. Aaah.
Telling the classic tale of Aladdin and his quest for Princess Jasmin’s hand we were delighted by the whole cast. Wishi washi and his mother were most probably our favourite characters – outrageous and fun – in classic Panto Drag. Brilliant. We loved the baddy (Mr Banana as the kids now call him) and were impressed by the supporting dance crew made up of children aged 10yrs+ (will it inspire my kids to join stage coach maybe?!). There was everything – a great story line, suspence, music and singing and of course the Panto shenanigans that get the audience fully involved.
The play was a good 2 hours and 15min long (including intervals), so plan for a long “sitting” – but both my kids did really well and as they were so engaged they barely noticed the time go by. The panto is on until January and well worth a visit during the Christmas holidays!
More info on how to book tickets at the Secombe Theatre here.
Disclosure – we were invited along to the see the show in return for writing an honest review of the panto