Art for entertainment's sake

Influential Artists Appearing in Pantomine

It’s pantomime season again! During December through to the end of January in theatres up and down the country actors and actresses will dress up in outlandish costumes to entertain us all. Pantomimes have the usual subject matter of well known fairy tales such as Aladdin or Babes in the Woods, while they are adapted for the stage in order to both entertain and amuse us.

Oh no they dont! Oh yes they do! can be heard in theatres up and down the country with children and adults alike enjoying the festive fun. Many thespians love to tread the boards by taking part in pantomimes and there have been some really famous artists taking to the stage over the years. Here we take a look at some of our favourite pantomime performers.

Billy Pearce

billy pearce

Billy Pearce has appeared in pantomime for over ten years now with his usual venue being Bradford Alhambra in West Yorkshire. Billy will appear in Aladdin again this year as he did some seven years ago, while the show has some superb 3D scenes that are spectacular!

All the audience is issued with a pair of 3D glasses on arrival and advised when to put them on during the performance. The scene where Aladdin, played by Billy Pearce, enters the cave is amazing as a huge spider comes toward him then scrambles out into the audience to dangle above the heads of the parents and kids much to their surprise!

Billy Pearce is fabulous to watch in panto with his quick wit and great rapport with the children the whole show is filled laughter from start to finish. The costumes are superb, just what you expect from a pantomime, being sparkly and colourful, while the makeup especially when it comes to Widow Twanky is hilarious.

Billy Pierce is truly the pantomime king therefore is invited back to the Bradford Alhambra year after year to perform in the starring role. He pulls in packed houses night after night and has the energy of a teenager as he strides from one side of the stage to the other. Anyone who hasn’t seen Billy Pearce in panto is missing a real treat!

Christopher Biggins

christopher biggins

Christopher Biggins has long been a stalwart performer of the panto season usually taking on the parts of either Widow Twanky in Aladdin or one of the ugly sisters in Cinderella. Biggins plays these garish over the top dragged up roles with great aplomb and is a firm family favourite in panto productions wherever he appears.

This year Biggins can be seen at the New Theatre Hull in Jack and the Beanstalk where he is playing Dame Trot, while he also is an accomplished comedy and serious actor. Biggins does hold a special place in his heart for the great pantomime season and relishes donning the garish outfits and the over the top makeup that we are familiar with. This is probably why he plays such a superb pantomime dame making audiences laugh from the minute he enters the stage until he exits, usually to a huge round of applause and cheers.

Christopher Biggins is by far the best pantomime dame on the circuit at the moment, likely due to his experience of thirty nine years in the pantomime business. Those of you who have not seen the great Biggins at work must try to take in one of his excellent performances at some stage as he is, simply the best!

Justin Fletcher

justin fletcher cinderella

The name of Justin Fletcher may not immediately spring to mind when thinking of pantomime artists but Justin is a firm favourite with audiences on CBeebies as he plays kids favourite Mr Tumble plus many other popular characters. Justin is a BAFTA award winning artist gaining this accolade for his CBeebies work, while he plays all kinds of characters in panto wowing children with his memorable performances.

This year Justin is appearing as Buttons in Cinderella at the New Victoria Theatre in Woking alongside tv presenter Zoe Salmon of Blue Peter fame as Cinderella. Justin fits into the role perfectly engaging the children, who will recognise him immediately, from the moment he walks on the stage.

The production is very colourful with superb sets and wonderful costumes and special effects to delight the kids. There is lots of singing and dancing, two things that Justin is great at, plus there is even a real life Shetland Pony included in the cast. Justin is certainly a childrens favourite, while adults will soon see why when they take their kids along to see him in action.

Julian Clary

julian-clary jack and the beanstalk

The New Theatre Cardiff is host to the superb pantomime production of Jack and the Beanstalk this year starring none other than hilarious, if not controversial, comedian Julian Clary. The show may have double entendres here and there but we are sure that the production is all great family orientated fun that children and adults alike will enjoy.

Julian plays The Spirit of the Beans a magical character who helps Jack on his quest, while this production is filled with fun, laughter, jokes, music, dancing plus an amazing giant that has to be seen to be believed. The sets are spectacular, while the make up and costumes are just as you would expect when our friend Julian is involved.

Like Christopher Biggins Julian is a pantomime regular that pulls in huge audiences wherever he appears as they know a show starring Julian Clary is going to be entertaining from beginning to end.