Making up for Brighton's "lack of pantos"

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Music Theatre 2000 & Showtime Productions combine to make good the panto lack in Brighton this Christmas.

Aladdin will be co-directed by Simon Gray, who also musically directs, and Nathan Potter who is also choreographer, as well as playing the role of Widow Twankey’s laundry boy, Wishee Washee (December 20-27). Simon said: “In the absence of a full-scale family Christmas show at the Theatre Royal or indeed anywhere in the Brighton area this year, Music Theatre 2000, in association with Showtime Productions, is proud to bring to the Windmill Theatre, Hove a traditional, magical, musical pantomime for all the family to enjoy. Aladdin is a favourite story bursting with boos and cheers and songs and laughter. With a first-rate cast of singing actors, dancers, a live band and a sprinkling of magic, Aladdin is a must-see part of your Christmas celebrations.

“Be transported to China in this years’ Music Theatre 2000 pantomime spectacular. Rub the magic lamp, enter the cave of wonders and enjoy this fun fairytale world where you will meet the lovely Princess Jasmine, the wicked Abanazer, the hilarious Widow Twankey and a host of other characters as well as, of course, the hero of the story, Aladdin himself!”

Simon added: “Christmas pantomimes must win over three generations in one audience. Pantomime is all for the audience – it’s not there to show how clever the writing is or how clever the concept is.”

Nathan Potter agrees: “The joy of panto is so infectious, so there’s no point fighting the form. Embrace the form and try to do clever things within it. It’s got to be played for real. We have a responsibility to the audience, particularly those coming to the theatre for the first time”. “Yes” says Simon, “we want them to keep coming back!”

MT2000 and Showtime Productions are delighted to be supporting the children’s charity Chestnut Tree the children’s hospice for East and West Sussex and South East Hampshire which cares for 300 children and young adults from 0-19 years of age with progressive life-shortening conditions.

Simon added: “Cast members include Ollie Wray in the title role with Tony Bright as his mum, Widow Twankey and Leonie-Sian Eldridge as the Princess and Guy Dudeney as the Emperor. Louis Craig is the wicked Abanazer, and Jamie Collins and Harry Morris play the policemen Ping and Pong. Sprinkling some magic on the whole situation is the mysterious, magical Genie of the Lamp, and also the Genie of the Ring played by Sophie Collins. The cast is complemented by a chorus of experienced singing dancers, along with children from the Drama Queens School of musical theatre.”

Tickets on 01273 565130 or www.aladdinbrighton.com.

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Go to www.chichester.co.uk/christmas/