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Magic time awaits Winchester pantomime audiences this Christmas
8:00am Thursday 27th September 2012 in Winchester
WINCHESTER is gearing up for one of the all-time classic pantomimes this Christmas.
The Theatre Royal has chosen Aladdin as its autumn season showpiece and is promising big things.
Theatre director Mark Courtice said it would be the venue’s most expensive pantomime yet featuring stunning effects and a live band for the first time ever.
He said: “I think this will end our autumn season with a bang. It’s the most expensive yet but although it will cost more we think we will make a better show. We are very aware that we rely on people coming to join us at Christmas but we must never take them for granted so we put more time, effort and money into making the show great.”
But he declined to reveal exactly how much the budget was.
Aladdin writer and director James Barry returns for his eighth pantomime at the theatre.
Mr Barry said: “It’s my third Aladdin in my career but the first I have done with a magic carpet which makes life easier. Aladdin is by any yardstick ‘the’ Christmas pantomime. It is always the number one or two with audiences and venues. “What’s really important for me is that children come here for the story. Adults come for the jokes but we want the children to believe the illusion and action and boo the baddies because they do evil things. I’m so excited to see what the audience thinks of the carpet but even I won’t see it in action until rehearsals.”
Julian Eardley is also returning for his fifth stint as the dame, this time Widow Twankey, while Rachel Fox is again designing the set and effects.
The pantomime runs from December 12 until January 6, 2013.