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Sundae 02-03-2010 03:32 PM

All you ever wanted to know about panto but were afraid to ask.
From a Cellar thread where I was a supporting artist in a TV show.

The quick answer is that pantomime is nothing like mime.
It's its own art form :)

DanaC 02-03-2010 03:36 PM

It is a form of theatre pretty much peculiar to Britain (as far as I know). It tends to focus on well-known children's stories (Aladin, Snow White, Cindarella, etc) and follows set conventions. Each pantomime has a 'pantomime Dame' which is a leading female character played by a male actor. There's usuallly also a male character played by a female actor. The 'Dame' is the most comedic of the characters and often acts as a 'guide' to the audience. The audience is addressed directly: in pantomime the fourth wall is barely there at all :P The audience is expected to participate. For instance, a common theme in pantomime is a villain (or other character, sometimes a beast) who comes in behind the lead character but remains unseen by them. They ask the audience 'where is that XXXX' and tell them to let them know if they see XXXX. The audience (usually children and families, but not eclusively) then shouts "he's behind you!" when XXXX comes into view.

Sundae 02-03-2010 03:43 PM

In Robin Hood (which I went to see in Cardiff just the other week) Friar Tuck ended up as the Dame :) The Sheriff of Nottingham was advertising for a housekeeper and they needed a spy in the castle. Of course the Sheriff fancied him, cue much hilarity of chasing round the stage and fake boobs slipping round the back of the costume etc.

The plot included a scene in the Ice Forest (all on skates, JB's bum looking very tight) the Churchill dog and a huge lizard/ dinosaur. All good traditional stuff!

DanaC 02-03-2010 03:45 PM

@ Sundae: there's a brilliant funny Doctor Who audio play called The One Doctor which is a complete homage to pantomime. I must get you a copy of it, you'd love it. It's the Sixth Doctor, Colin Baker, who is a stalwart of pantomime when he isn't doing Doctor Who stuff. It's so funny. Full of lewd innuendo, that kids won;t fully get, in that way that panto always is:

On encountering 'the crystal':

Doctor: Good Lord
Mel: Look at the size of it Doctor!
Doctor: I've never seen one that big before!

Made me chuckle. Even the supporting characters have names that refer to pantomime roles. One of them is called Banto Zane!

Actors include: Matt Lucas, Nicholas Pegg and (naturally in a pantomime) Christopher Biggins!

limey 02-03-2010 04:02 PM

bu&&er bu&&er bu&&er I had decided that I'd love to go to the panto in Glesca wi you dear SG but forgot to tell you. BU&&ER! Oh well, we WILL meet up and have a FAB meal (Russian, if you'll let me be your giude) dear Sundae.
And did I say OH BUGGER!!!!!!!!

Sundae 02-03-2010 04:05 PM

Oh I'm sorry chick!
I held out til Tuesday just in case, but honestly didn't think to check with you again.

Hey, I'm not averse to going twice!
I'll need to wait til the Monday after next to get the money together, but if you want to go either Saturday night or Sunday night do let me know. I'm going alone to the matinee, which is where they play all sorts of tricks and japes on eachother and ad lib. So it will be good to see how it's supposed to be done!

If we don't do the panto together then yes, I'd love to meet for food! Shall we see if Be-Bop is interested in a meet up? Even if that is just for a drink?

DanaC 02-03-2010 04:10 PM

When is it you're going Sundae? If there are tickets left, i could try and book at the same time. Then me you and Limey (and buster if he wants) can hook up!

limey 02-04-2010 03:47 AM

I don't want to lead you into [the] temptation of more spending - I could see if tickets are available at the matinee still and go anyways, even if we don't sit together. Gimme a weblink for ticket sales pleeze!
Oh, and it'd be a gas if Be-bop turned up (in the kilt, please!), and Dana and anyone else ...

Sundae 02-04-2010 05:18 AM

The matinee is on Sunday 9th at 14.00. If you want to go on Saturday I am happy to go with you. You can still get seats in the Front Stalls about row J or K, which is the seat I was in in Cardiff and I was happy with that. Of course if you prefer to sit further back and in cheaper seats that is your choice, there are plenty of seats to choose from still.


You and Dana liaise re the show you go to Limey. If you choose not to go to the matinee let me know and we can buy three tickets together. If you do go to the matinee then at least we'll all be going together, leaving together and queueing for the loo together :)

I'm staying at the Alamo B&B on Saturday 8th and Sunday 9th, and it looks like Dana wants to stay at least one night. If you do too we could always get a family room?

How exciting, this is even more of an adventure now!

Sundae 02-04-2010 07:21 AM

Am happy because I came back from town and sorted the computer out. How nice to have internet access at home instead of sitting between jack-off boy and wee man and listening to all the screaming toddlers.

DanaC 02-04-2010 07:28 AM

They sound like the world's least desirable superheros...Jack-off Boy and Wee Man.

I can't wait for my new broadband connection to be sorted out. I'm on so-called bastarding 'mobile broadband' right now. It's pants. i live in a communications blackhole.

Clodfobble 02-04-2010 07:58 AM

On the topic of least-desirable superheroes (NSFW language):

lumberjim 02-05-2010 04:57 AM

I fell awake at 5:30 this am. Instead of tossing and turning for an hour and a half, I'm out for a brisk pre-dawn walk. And dwelling on my crackberry. Right fucking now.

capnhowdy 02-05-2010 06:34 AM

That's always a sign of a great day coming up!

DanaC 02-05-2010 07:15 AM

The Glasgow GTG in January is making me happy! :) Looking forward to meeting Limey (and B if he decides to come along) and haven't seen Sundae in ages!

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