WATCH LIVE: Panto is back on...oh yes it is - get tickets to online Cinderella
PANTO is back - oh yes it is, with Cinderella Live billed as the world's first interactive pantomime online to lift lockdown gloom with stars of Harry Potter, Hollyoaks and Coronation Street.
BUY TICKETS: There will be five live shows, December 18, 19, 21, 23 and 24, then on demand screenings and one ticket per device gives you access to the lot from just £14.97, for early bookings, £19.97 standard tickets, with gift packs and group discounts - for full details, times and bookings CLICK HERE.
SCHOOLS OFFER: Schools can also buy into special live screenings just for them on Wednesday and Thursday, December 16 and 17, at 10am and 1pm, at a bargain price of £147 for up to 20 classrooms to watch - CLICK HERE
Audiences will also be able to watch the shows on demand from Thursday, December 17, 2020, to Sunday, January 31, 2021.
The cast line-up includes Chris Rankin, who played Percey Weasley in the Harry Potter films, here playing the Fairy Godfather. He said; “I am over the moon to be working on this innovative production that will give the audience the feeling that they are sitting in the theatre itself."
Hollyoaks star Jessica Ellis is the Evil Stepmother and Kimberly Hart-Simpson, who plays Nicky Wheatley in Coronation Street, plays Dandini.
The cast also includes Katy Clayton, of Where the Heart Is, in the title role of Cinderella, Tim Churchill, of Blood Brothers fame, as one of the Ugly Sisters, Martin Callaghan, from Portugal’s Got Talent, as Baron Hardup and Chris Johnson, of CBBC, as Buttons.
Pantomime veteran Steve Fortune and renowned Irish busker Cuan Durkin also feature.
Panto Live, the company behind the production, will stream each performance completely live with the aim to make the shows like traditional pantomimes, exciting, unpredictable and unique to every audience.
It will be a uniquely interactive experience, with audiences given buttons to trigger sounds back in the studio, as if they were in the theatre itself, for everyone to hear the boos, laughter, cheers, clapping, sing-alongs and even shouts of “Behind You!”.
There will be live chat, uploads for the best-dressed at home, sing-a-longs and downloadable activity packs.
A completely virtual world, designed with Unreal Engine, a game engine, will help re-create the magic of traditional pantomimes, add Yorkshire based Panto Live.
At a time when many actors and creative industries' workforce find themselves unemployed, Cinderella Live is creating new means of supporting theatre and the TV industry.
The production is also partnering with the Film and TV Charity and the Actors’ Children Trust. Both organisations support UK-based creatives affected by the pandemic.
Cinderella Live producer, Lianne Collinson, also emphasises the importance of supporting young talent at a time when entering the creative industries is extremely difficult, with many productions cancelled or postponed due to the pandemic.
“We are extremely excited to cast young emerging talent in Cinderella Live. Cuan Durkin is immensely talented, so it was fantastic to cast him in his first professional production and provide him with this opportunity in these difficult times.”
She added: “Pantomimes are the best way to tell an interactive story we all love. We are so thrilled to bring you fantastic costumes, special effects, great music and singers along with many more star names still to be announced”.
Director Charlotte Peters said: "I am absolutely delighted to be returning to Pantoland with such an ambitious and innovative new production, which crosses the boundary between stage and screen.
"Our incredible cast comes from a range of stage, online and television backgrounds and are all as excited as I am to be combining skills for this new adventure, which we cannot wait to share with our audiences."
Co-Producer and Director of Photography Ben McNeill said:“The joy of this production is that we will be broadcasting live using the latest technology to offer high end TV production combined with a brilliant theatre experience.
"It will be a very special occasion and will pave the way for a new way of working in the future. This production will look and sound wonderful on phones, tablets, computer devices and be truly stunning when watched on a TV.”
Tim Churchill, who plays one of the Ugly Sisters, said, “Live streaming is a great medium to get panto and other theatre back in front of our audiences. Not just during this pandemic, but also in the future for those who cannot physically get to our theatres.”
In addition to interacting with the performance, members of the public also have the chance to be a part of the ensemble. All you have to do is record a solo self-tape and send it to the Panto Live team via their website at pantolive.com/ensemble-competition.
Singers aged 11-16 are welcome to apply from any corner of the world, with parental permission.
Save 10% on tickets with a special Black Friday offer until midnight Monday, November 30.