Well, that’s the festive period done for another year. The decs are being re-boxed and shoved back in the loft, we’ve had turkey in every form possible plus more choccies than we probably should have consumed. Santa has been and gone and left his magical mark on the hearts of children all over the globe. Before we say our final goodbye to Christmas, we just had to reflect back on our Panto production of Aladdin-a-bin.
This is the second Pantomime performance project we have done with our amateur actors. After the success of ‘Ella’ last year Olivia and I very soon after exclaimed “So what one are we going to write next year!?”. It’s now a given that we will put on a Pantomime every year and we couldn’t be happier.
So on Saturday 15th at 9.30am the slightly apprehensive but excited cast descended upon the Rosemary Branch Theatre to start rehearsals. Scripts went out weeks in advance so the cast had time to learn and practise their lines before tackling the blocking and piecing each scene together. They had only until 5pm that day and until 3pm on Sunday to perfect the play as best they could before curtain up for a 3pm show. It’s not just their lines that they have to remember; it’s all the blocking, entrances and exits, choreography, song lyrics, costume changes. The list is endless and for the untrained actor, this can be so overwhelming, especially with just one and a half days rehearsal.
We believe our two day performance projects are increasingly beneficial for the under-confident adult, and here’s our theory behind it…
There’s simply no time to be nervous.With the endless list of things to be responsible for, the fear that usually comes creeping in when you have to perform in front of people just goes out the window. Because in order to survive and keep your head above water, you have no other choice but to ignore it and concentrate on the job in hand. Like the late Noel Coward said “just say the lines and don’t trip over the furniture”. Before you know it, nerves has turned into adrenaline, it’s over in a flash and you’re left wondering what you were so nervous about.
It’s Panto-you can make mistakes! Lots of things go wrong on stage and of course, it’s best to avoid it but if things go array in Panto, you’re less likely to notice and more likely to make the audience laugh more than say, in a Chekhov or a Shakespeare play. Panto is all about direct address to the audience, asides and private jokes. So if you go wrong, send a wink, a nod, and a quick “oh dear!” gag their way and you’ve got them on your side, screaming for more calamities. Plus, natural blunders are so much funnier than planned ones.
To conclude, another huge well done to all our cast for the most fantastic production. We see our actors grow and develop throughout the term but seeing them on a real life stage, costumes on their backs and lights pointing at them just really cements how brilliant they are and how confident they are becoming.
And lastly, if YOU would like more info on how to take part in one of our yearly productions then please do get in touch. No audition or previous experience required, just a spark of passion and intrigue.
Wishing you all a happy and healthy 2019.
Katherine and Olivia
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