Beanstalk panto magic begins to sprout in rehearsals
- Credit: Richard Batson
Panto fun for two seaside theatres is taking giant steps with rehearsals now in full swing.
Jack and the Beanstalk will be heading to Sheringham Little Theatre and St George's Theatre at Great Yarmouth - as well as thousands of schools via a streamed online version.
The cast is now working with director Nick Earnshaw to turn the script, gags, song, dance and special effects into an action-packed show based on the classic fairytale.
He said: “There are long days of rehearsals ahead but I’m thrilled to be working with a young energetic multi-talented cast who are all friends, which gives a great dynamic to the show and rapport among the characters."
The main cast members are Charlie Randall as Jack, Emma Riches as his girlfriend Jill, Harry Wyatt as Jack’s mum Dame Tiktok and Olly Westlake as Colin the cow.
It is the fifth panto Nick has written for the venues, and eighth he has directed – and it is following the format of last year’s shorter show created for the Covid lockdown, but whose new look is being repeated due to public feedback.
“We have broken away from the old style longer pantos with traditional set pieces, such as a 10-minute ‘slop scene’ towards a fast-paced, shorter show, which compresses the action but still tells the story,” he added.
Theatre director Debbie Thompson said: “Panto is all about audience participation, and even though Zoom has kept us in touch with our audiences during the lockdown, there is no substitute for doing it live in a theatre.”
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A series of school shows will start on December 6, before a public launch at St Georges’s on December 11, and the Sheringham show running from December 21 to 31.
The live theatre panto shows are: St Georges – December 11-19 (1pm and 5pm). Little Theatre December 21-23 (1pm and 5pm), Christmas Eve at 10am and 1pm and back to 1pm and 5pm for December 26-31.
Schools can sign up to join in at the Norfolk Music Hub at www.norfolkmusichub.org.uk/site/jack-beanstalk-livestream-pantomime-coming-december-2021/