Showing posts with label Family Entertainment. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Family Entertainment. Show all posts

Wednesday, 28 April 2021

Top Magicians Line-Up to Re-Open Liverpool's M&S Arena with Spectacular Show

Shone Productions are bringing a spectacular magic show, which is set to be the first performance of the year at Liverpool's M&S Bank Arena this Summer to mark the venue's post lockdown reopening.

The show will form the first live programme taking place at the waterfront venue when Covid-19 restrictions are eased following 17th May.

Liverpool-based producer James Shone is delighted to reveal that X-Treme Magic will be staged on Saturday 22nd May at 7pm in The Auditorium at Liverpool's M&S Bank Arena, and tickets are on sale now.

This is no old-fashioned, rabbit-out-of-a-hat magic, this show is a spectacle, designed to thrill with death-defying edge-of-your-seat stunts, grand stage illusions, daredevil escapology, and mind blowing magic all within a fast-paced performance.

Organisers are keen to reassure theatregoers that all necessary safety measures - including social distancing - will be in place to ensure a relaxing and enjoyable return to indoor live entertainment.

Producer James Shone commented: "I am delighted to be bringing the very first live show of the year to The Auditorium at the M&S Arena. Audiences have missed out on so many live experiences over the last 12 months, so it is a real privilege that we will be presenting shows once lockdown restrictions are eased.

"And what a show it is, we have some of the leading magicians and illusionists in the industry, we have created a spectacular production for all the family to enjoy. We want to reassure theatregoers that social distancing and safety measures will be in place to ensure Covid-secure performances - audiences, cast and crew safety is paramount."

X-treme Magic - The World's Most Dangerous Thrill Show is packed with fire, illusion and death-defying stunts. Master illusionist Richard Cadell will be joined by a full supporting cast of magicians including Pete Firman (Tonight At The London Palladium), Elizabeth Best (Britain's Got Talent) and Craig Christian (Evolution of Magic), as well as fire artistes, speciality acts and dancers. The show is billed as being unlike any other magic show ever seen in the UK. Created in Las Vegas, it was then brought across the pond to entertain UK audiences. Highlights include making a motorcycle appear from nowhere; Russian roulette with sticks of Dynamite; and even trying to escape from a straight-jacket while hung from a burning rope.

To book tickets please visit: www.mandsbankarena.com

Listing Details

X-Treme Magic

Date - Saturday 22nd May 2021 at 7pm

Venue - The Auditorium, M&S Bank Arena, Liverpool, L3 4FP



*Disclaimer - This post is written based on a press release kindly provided by BEA. All details provided are believed to be correct at the time of writing but can be subject to change. I would therefore always recommend visiting the venue's own website in order to obtain the most up to date information.

Saturday, 11 April 2020

Regal Entertainments Ltd to Present a Free Easter Pantomime: Rapunzel - The Lockdown Panto

This Easter, despite the lock-down, Regal Entertainments Ltd have created a free online Pantomime for all the family to enjoy, and what better fairy-tale to be presented during a lock-down than that of a young girl locked up in a tower?

Rapunzel: The Lockdown Panto will live stream daily on St Helen's Theatre Royal's Facebook and Instagram accounts from Sunday 12th April to Saturday 18th April 2020 at 1:30pm.

The uniquely filmed production will star a host of the regular stars that appear at St Helens Theatre Royal. Olivia Sloyan will play Rapunzel, James Lacey as the Witch, Lewis Devine as Daft Dave, Samantha Palin as the Queen, Warren Donnelly as the King, Andrew Geater as the Prince, Abby Middleton as Fairy Anna(logue) and Jenna Sian O'Hara as Pixel the Pixie.


For this special production, each cast member has recorded their own section of the pantomime at home, and, through careful editing, the story is brought together, to create a unique online pantomime that the whole family will enjoy. The pantomime is written and directed by James Lacey and choreographed by Sarah Walker.

Regal Entertainments had to reschedule their usual Easter Pantomime at St Helens Theatre Royal, Goldilocks and the Three Bears, which will now take place in the Autumn.

Producer and Director at Regal Entertainments, Chantelle Nolan says: "During the national lockdown we wanted to reward and entertain families for being responsible and isolating. So many of our customers were disappointed not to be able to come and see our Easter pantomime in St Helens, so we thought that, this year, we would bring the panto to them.

"We have an incredibly talented cast, who are more than up to the challenge of creating a unique, new show and we're going to put on a fantastic online show that all ages can enjoy."

Rapunzel tells the tale of a young girl stolen from her family and locked away from the world in a tower by a wicked witch. Unable to leave, she must let down her golden hair for the witch to climb to bring her food. One day a handsome prince discovers the tower and sees the beautiful girl. Will Rapunzel and the Prince find their freedom? Will they live happily ever after? Or will the wicked witch catch them?

To watch the show, viewers will need to become a fan of the St Helens Theatre Royal Facebook or Instagram accounts where information to view will be posted, the show will launch daily at 1:30pm from Easter Sunday.

Listing Details

Show - Rapunzel: The Lock-Down Panto
Dates - Sunday 12th April to Saturday 18th April 2020
Time - Daily at 1:30pm
Tickets - Free online performance

This show can be watched online for free on Facebook (@StHelensTheatreRoyal) or on Instagram (@TheatreRoyalStH).


*Disclaimer: This post has been written based on a press release kindly provided by BEA. 


Friday, 28 February 2020

Beauty and the Beast at the Epstein Theatre in Liverpool this Easter

*Please note that this show has now been postponed

Get ready to be swept off your feet this Easter as the timeless classic Beauty and the Beast brings magic and adventure to the Epstein Theatre.

This enchanting, family-friendly panto production will run from Friday 10th April until Sunday 19th April and Regal Entertainments Ltd have recently announced a fantastic line-up of stars.

Channel 5 Milkshake's Amy Thompson will appear as Belle opposite Timothy Lucas as the dashing but troubled Beast.

They will be joined by Philip McGuinness as dastardly Gaston and Lewis Devine as French Frank, along with James Lacey as the hilarious Potty Polly and Sarah Walker as Fairy Rose.

Amy Thompson is no stranger to Beauty and the Beast having previously played Belle for Regal Entertainments at St Helens Theatre Royal.

The TV and stage actress's other panto credits include Sleeping Beauty (Malvern Theatres, Pavilion Theatre, Mansfield Palace and Floral Pavilion, New Brighton), Aladdin (Blackpool Grand), Cinderella (Blackpool Grand and Sunderland Empire), Snow White (Rhyl Pavilion) and Little Red Riding Hood (Hull Truck Theatre).

Timothy Lucas takes on the role of the Beast, doomed to roam his castle in hideous form until true love frees him from a wicked curse.

The Liverpool Theatre School-trained actor has recently appeared as the Cowardly Lion in The Wizard of Oz at St Helens Theatre Royal. His other panto roles include the hilarious PC Noodle in Aladdin, Gaston in Beauty and the Beast and the notorious Captain Hook in Peter Pan.

Meanwhile Philip McGuinness returns to the role of the preening Gaston after playing it to acclaim at St Helens Theatre Royal. His other panto roles include Tin Man and the Scarecrow in The Wizard of Oz, Captain Hook in Peter Pan and the villainous Abanazer in Aladdin at St Helens.


Lewis Devine makes a welcome return to the Epstein after winning the hearts of audiences playing the hapless Buttons in Cinderella at Christmas.

His career started at an early age when he first appeared on the first series of ITV's Kids Stars in Their Eyes, which he won with his impersonation of Donny Osmond. His panto credits include Muddles in Snow White and the title role of Peter Pan, both at St Helens Theatre Royal, and French Frank in Beauty and the Beast at Stockport Plaza.

Liverpool actor and producer James Lacey takes on Dame duties as Potty Polly. James has more than a decade of panto experience on his busy CV and in addition to that was the body double for Richard Madden in Sir Kenneth Branagh's big screen Cinderella.

And dancer and choreographer Sarah Walker will bring all-round sparkle as well as twinkle toes to the role of the goodhearted Fairy Rose.

Beauty and the Beast is directed by Andrew Geater and produced by Regal Entertainments Ltd.

Producer Chantelle Nolan said: "Beauty and the Beast is one of the most magical fairytales with its beautiful and kind-hearted heroine and a troubled hero to root for, all surrounded by a brilliantly colourful cast of larger-than-life characters and with an important message for theatregoers young and old.

"I'm delighted to be working with such a fantastic group of actors, and I can guarantee Epstein audiences are in for an egg-stra special treat this Easter."

Beauty and the Beast tells the timeless story of Belle - the beautiful young woman who falls in love with the most unexpected of princes.

Will the Beast learn to love and be loved? Will the spell be broken in time for all to live happily ever after? Come down to the Epstein Theatre this Easter and find out.

Listing Details

Show - Beauty and the Beast
Venue - Epstein Theatre, Hanover Street, Liverpool
Dates - 10th April until 19th April 2020
Times - Times vary, so please visit the website to obtain the most up to date information.
Tickets - Tickets start from £13

To book tickets please call 0844 888 4411* or go online at www.epsteinliverpool.co.uk* or in person at The Epstein Theatre Box Office from 12pm - 6pm, Monday to Saturday.

*Subject to booking fee. All prices include a £1 per ticket venue restoration levy.

For more details please check out www.epsteinliverpool.co.uk to join their mailing list. Alternatively you can follow them on Facebook or on Twitter @EpsteinTheatre.

*This post has been written based on a press release kindly provided by BEA. Details provided are believed to be correct at the time of writing, but is subject to change. I would always recommend visiting the venues own website, in order to obtain the most up to date information.

Tuesday, 17 December 2019

Aladdin at St. Helens Theatre Royal - A Review

Regal Entertainments' pantomimes at St. Helens Theatre Royal are renowned for their fantastic productions and this years Christmas offering of Aladdin is certainly no exception. From start to finish the show is packed full of comedy, stunning vocals and plenty of dance moves that are strictly fabulous.

This pantomime tells the story of Aladdin, his quest for the magical lamp and his love for the beautiful Princess Jasmine. However, the evil Abanazar wants the lamp and its powers all to himself and sets up a cunning plan to become its owner. The Genie of the Lamp is on hand to grant three wishes to its bearer, whilst the Slave of the Ring is full of helpful wisdom and advice. Aladdins family Widow Twankey and Wishee Washee ensure that Aladdin gets all the help he needs and together this creates a fun re-telling of this age long story.

St. Helens is one of our favourite theatres and as we took our seats in the circle, we could feel the excitement throughout the building with a lovely atmosphere that continued throughout the show. There was plenty of audience participation and children (plus adults) loved joining in with the traditional 'It's Behind You' and 'Oh Yes He Did' scenes.

Image credit: David Munn Photography

Robin Windsor stars in the lead role of Aladdin and suits the role perfectly with his charm, wit and exceptional dancing ability. I thought his on stage partnership with Princess Jasmine (Olivia Sloyan) worked well and we really enjoyed her exceptional vocals, which really make her shine like the star she is, when performing on stage.

Resident Dame Si Foster plays the glamourous Widow Twankey and we loved his character and cheeky personality. His humour was complimented well by Scott Gallagher, who starred as Wishee Washee who delivered his scenes with perfect comical timing. We also thought that his interaction with the children in the second half of the show during the 'Floss Like a Boss' competition was brilliant. Friendly and hilarious, which was perfect!

One of our panto favourites Philip McGuinness gives an amusing portrayal of the wicked Abanazar. We have seen him in numerous pantomimes previously and he never disappoints. He is great at providing is own interpretation of a character which is very enjoyable to watch.

Image credit: David Munn Photography

Kai Jolley stars as the Genie of the Lamp and we thought that he was great, with a very clear and strong voice, along with the enthusiasm and warmth that you would expect from the genie. We really enjoyed his moments on stage, along with The Slave of the Ring played by Jenna O'Hara who suited the supporting role well. A special mention also has to go to both the senior and juvenile dancers who exhibited their wonderful skills superbly throughout the whole show.

The stand out character for us though, was the wonderful Timothy Lucas, starring as PC Noodle, who we found to be highly entertaining and we felt he was the perfect addition to a stellar cast. He delivers countless comical performances which provides families with plenty of laughter. His vocals are strong, which were evident during a particular scene with Abanazar, where a musical mash-up of well known songs is delivered flawlessly.

Image credit: David Munn Photography

The scenery was bright and eye-catching, whilst the costumes were glamorous and extravagant, ensuring that the cast most definitely looked the part. The clever and witty script was delivered with excellence and the comedy scenes were hilarious, especially a funny sketch that took place in the laundry, as well as the moment that the audience were soaked with water guns. We thought we may have been safe from this being seated upstairs, but the cast ensured that we didn't miss out on the fun, much to my children's delight.

The inclusion of a 3D scene was wonderful and the audience were taken on a magical carpet ride. I found the quality of this scene to be superb and despite knowing that it wasn't real, I will happily admit jumping a couple of times as creatures came flying towards me.

Overall we had an absolutely wonderful time watching Aladdin and feel that it truly offers something for the whole family to enjoy. With jokes for the kids, some cheeky innuendos for the adults, stunning vocals, creative choreography and plenty of fun for audiences of all ages. We would absolutely recommend this show to everyone, so don't miss your chance to see this fabulous pantomime and be sure to book your tickets very soon!

Listing Details

Show - Aladdin
Venue - St. Helens Theatre Royal, Corporation Street, St Helens, WA10 1LQ
Dates - Saturday 7th December 2019 to Sunday 12th January 2020
Times - Times vary so please visit the St. Helens Theatre Royal website here to obtain this information.
Tickets - Prices start from £13*

*All prices are inclusive of a £1 per seat transaction fee. On-line bookings are subject to an additional 50p per seat on-line processing fee.

Bookings - Book in person at the Theatre Royal Box Office, Corporation Street, St Helens, WA10 1LQ (Mon-Sat 10am to 5pm). Alternatively, call 01744 756000, or log on to www.sthelenstheatreroyal.com.

Image credit: David Munn Photography

*Disclaimer - We were provided with press tickets for the purpose of writing an honest review of the production. All opinions are my own unless stated otherwise. Details provided are believed to be correct at the time of writing, but are subject to change. I would therefore always recommend visiting the venues own website, in order to obtain the most up to date information.

Friday, 5 July 2019

Stellar Cast Revealed for Cinderella at The Epstein Theatre This Christmas

Epstein Entertainments Ltd have recently announced the first wave of stars confirmed for their debut panto production, coming to The Epstein Theatre this Christmas. Audiences are guaranteed to have a ball when the greatest rags to riches tale opens from Friday 6th December 2019 to Sunday 5th January 2020 and tickets are on sale now!

Emmerdale's Sammy Winward; Benidorm's Crissy Rock; and Brookside's Sarah White are all set to appear in Cinderella at the Hanover Street venue later this year.

Sammy Winward, who trained at the Academy of Classical Dance and Stage and is most notable for playing Katie Sugden in ITV's Emmerdale, will lead the cast in the title role of Cinderella.

It is also certain to be a White Crissy-mas, with Brookside's Sarah White and award-winning actor and comedian Crissy Rock appearing as the Ugly Sisters.


Crissy's screen career began with an award-winning performance in Ken Loache's 1994 film drama Ladybird, Ladybird. The Liverpool native is also renowned for her role as Janey York in ITV's Benidorm, and most recently took part in The All New Monty: Ladies Night which saw a group of celebrities strip-off to raise awareness of the importance of early health checks in preventing breast cancer.

Crissy's stage credits include Escorts: The Musical, Dirty Dusting, Rita, Sue and Bob Too! and Achy Breaky Bride, and panto credits include Ugly Sister in Cinderella at St Helens Theatre Royal and Fairy Godmother in Sleeping Beauty at The Brindley.

Whilst Sarah White is best known for her character Bev McLoughlin in Brookside, where her controversial and dramatic storyline saw her have a baby with her boyfriend's son. Her theatre credits include Margy in The Morris at the Liverpool Everyman, Rita in three UK tours of Naked Truth, and Sheila in The Salon at both The Epstein Theatre and St Helens Theatre Royal.

Further casting will also be announced in the coming weeks.

Cinderella is produced by Epstein Entertainments Ltd, a joint venture between Chantelle Nolan and Jane Joseph from Regal Entertainments Ltd and producer Bill Elms.

Epstein Entertainments' debut production at the venue promises to be a festive extravaganza.

Producer Chantelle Nolan said: "We are very excited to finally reveal the first stars confirmed for our debut panto at the Epstein Theatre. Our beautiful leading lady, Sammy Winward, was on our screens in one of the UK's biggest tv shows and will dazzle as Cinderella.

"It was important for us to bring local talent to the Epstein stage and Crissy and Sarah are revered Liverpool household names. It promises to be a tremendous show for audiences young and old this Christmas."

Director Jane Joseph added: "It is an absolute joy to be returning to direct the Christmas panto at the Epstein Theatre. I directed my very first panto here in 1994 when it was The Neptune, so this venue holds a very special place in my heart. We have a fabulous show lined up for audiences this year so be sure to book your tickets."

Cinderella tells the story of a beautiful girl who is reduced to a life of servitude by her two ugly stepsisters. That is all set to change when an invitation to a grand ball at the palace arrives.

With a bit of magic and some help from her friend Buttons, Cinderella is transformed into the belle of the ball. But what will happen at the stroke of midnight?

Enchanted pumpkins, glass slippers, a sparkling fairy-tale carriage - Epstein Entertainments' version of this classic tale has something for the whole family.

Be sure to book your tickets early and get ready to be whisked off to the most lavish panto in all the land.

Listing Details

Show - Cinderella
Venue - The Epstein Theatre, Hanover House, 85 Hanover Street, Liverpool, L1 3DZ
Dates - Friday 6th December 2019 to Sunday 5th January 2020
Times - Times vary so please visit the Epstein Theatre website for the most up to date information.
Tickets: Various tickets available starting from £11

To book tickets please call 0844 888 4411* or visit www.epsteinliverpool.co.uk. Alternatively, you can visit the Epstein Theatre Box Office from 12pm-6pm, Monday to Saturday.

*Subject to booking fee. All prices include a £1 per ticket venue restoration levy.

Disclaimer - This post is based on a press release provided by BEA. All information is believed to be correct at the time of posting but can be subject to change. I would therefore always recommend visiting the venues own website in order to obtain the most up to date information.

Wednesday, 24 April 2019

Family Fun with Googly Eyes by University Games - A Review

Keeping my kids occupied during the school holidays can sometimes be quite a task. Whilst we enjoy regular days out, our budget will only stretch so far, therefore it means that occasionally we need to find some ways to entertain ourselves at home.

This is when I find that board games can be a great source of entertainment and they also provide you with the perfect opportunity to spend some family time together. University Games have a great selection available in the shops and when we were recently offered the chance to review their Googly Eyes game, I knew that the Easter holidays would most certainly provide us with the chance to try it out.

Googly Eyes is described as 'The drawing game of wacky vision!'. All of my children love to draw, so as soon as I discovered that there was an artistic element involved, I quickly realised that it would be the perfect game for us.


Googly Eyes by University Games comes in a brightly coloured and interesting box. There is a clear plastic window where you can see the glasses inside, along with some images of the contents and someone drawing a picture. This gives you a slight hint as to what the game involves.

On the reverse of the box there is a great contents picture which shows you everything that is included in the box. There is also a basic sentence that gives a simple idea as to how the game works which reads 'Put on the wacky vision-altering glasses and race against time to draw your team to the finish.'

The full contents include:
  • 1 x Gameboard
  • 1 x Pair of Wacky Oversized Glasses
  • 3 x Sets of tinted, interchangeable lenses
  • 4 x Plastic playing pieces
  • 1 x Drawing Pad
  • 1 x Pencil
  • 1 x Dice
  • 1 x Timer
  • 54 x Challenge Cards (this equates to a total of 162 challenges)
  • 1 x Instructions
Setting up the game was easy and was simply a case of removing all the items from the box, placing the board on the table and putting the cards in a neat pile. I then read through the instructions for everyone so that we had a clear understanding of how to play before we began. Each of my children were desperate to try on the glasses, so we actually spent ten minutes just wearing the glasses and seeing how the different lenses compared. Once we had taken some funny photos we made a start and Riley excitedly threw the dice.


To play the game the first player rolls the dice and moves their counter along to the corresponding colour. This can be green (easy), yellow (medium) or blue (difficult). Once you have landed on a space, you then select a card and need to draw the item that matches the colour your counter is on. Each colour is also allocated a set amount of time for your to do your drawing, with green having 15 seconds, yellow having 30 seconds and the most difficult of blue being given 45 seconds.

The players team mate(s) then need to try and correctly guess what is being drawn against the clock. Of course this sounds quite simple, but the glasses make the task quite tricky, especially if you are unlucky enough to land on the blue space where you also have to switch hands. This means that you have to wear the most difficult of lenses, whilst also drawing with the opposite hand to which you would normally use.

The glasses fitted Emma (12), Ben (11) and myself really well, however my six year old did need to hold them in place at times. Funnily enough he chose not to hold them in place when he had the blue lenses in, so I am convinced that he could see through the gap, though he would never admit to this. I really liked how it encouraged my youngest child to think how he could draw things, so for example he had the challenge of drawing a tree house, so he quickly thought about this and drew a separate tree and then a house next to it, which made it easy for me to guess.


If the team player guesses correctly then you roll the dice again to move along the board. The winner is the team that reach the Finish point first.

I seemed to find the blue lenses far more difficult than the children and some of my drawings were hilarious as I literally could not see what I was doing.

Overall we had a fantastic time playing Googly Eyes and it provided plenty of laughter. It is a great game to play as a family and would also be the perfect game to bring out at a party or family gathering. It is simple to understand and my six year old son grasped the concept of the game instantly without the need for much explanation. The contents were all good quality so I had no need to be concerned about any parts breaking. One thing that I particularly liked was that everything fitted back into the box really easily, which I have found can be quite a challenge with some other games and smaller parts often go missing. However with Googly Eyes, everything has its own place in the box so it is easy to store away safely ready to play again another day. My family and I would happily recommend this game to others and we have already decided that it is going to become our new travel game to take with us when we go on holiday.

The game has an RRP of £19.99 and is recommended for children aged 7+. It is available to purchase from most good toy retailers including Argos, Smyths, Sainsburys, Debenhams and Amazon.

For further information on Googly Eyes or other University Games, then please visit their website or social media pages which can be found on the following channels:

Website - www.university-games.co.uk
Twitter - @ugamesUK
YouTube - University Games


*Disclaimer: We were sent the Googly Eyes game free of charge for the purpose of writing an honest review of the product. All thoughts and opinions are my own unless otherwise stated. This post contains an Amazon affiliate link which means that I may receive a small commission should you choose to purchase from this retailer.

Wednesday, 27 March 2019

Zog Flies Into Storyhouse, Chester from the 5th-7th April 2019 - Preview

My family and I are huge fans of books written by Julia Donaldson and all three of my children have grown up enjoying her wonderful stories of fun and adventure. We were therefore really excited to learn more about the hotly anticipated family stage show of Zog, which will be flying into Storyhouse in Chester, next week!

Tickets are on sale now for this wonderful production of Zog, which is based on the book by Julia Donaldson with illustrations by Axel Scheffler. The show is currently embarking on a UK tour, which started earlier this month in Leeds and it will be at Storyhouse from Friday 5th of April to Sunday 7th April for a total of six performances.


The stage adaptation of the book is suitable for children and families of all ages. It will tell the story of Zog who is large in size and very keen in nature. He is eager to win a golden star at Madam Dragon's school, where dragons learn all the things that dragons need to know. Zog tries so very hard, perhaps too hard, and he bumps, burns and roars his way through years one, two and three. Luckily, the plucky Princess Pearl patches him up ready to face his biggest challenge yet.....a duel with a knight, Sir Gadabout the Great!

The world of Zog will be brought to life on stage by a skilled team of actor-puppeteers, using handcrafted puppets that have been designed and created by Little Angel Theatre co-founder Lyndie Wright. It is adapted and directed by Mike Shepherd (founder and artistic director of Kneehigh), with an original folk score by Johnny Flynn (currently starring in True West in the West End), and designs by Katie Sykes (Jane Eyre at the National Theatre).

Photo credit: Helen Maybanks

The cast features Elliot Mackenzie (professional debut) as Zog; Emily Benjamin (Bat Out Of Hell) as Princess Pearl; Robert Ginty (Salome and Coriolanus, Royal Shakespeare Company) as Sir Gadabout the Great; Euan Wilson (Stick Man, UK Tour) as Madame Dragon; and Dixie McDevitt  (National Youth Theatre alumni) as Ensemble.

Zog is produced by Freckle Productions and Rose Theatre Kingston. Freckle Productions' most recent show is Tabby McTat, an adaptation of the book by Julia Donaldson, following their acclaimed productions of Tiddler and Other Terrific Tales and Stick Man.

Completing the creative team are movement director Tom Jackson Greaves (Billionaire Boy, UK Tour), lighting designer Ric Mountjoy (The Play that Goes Wrong), sound designer Julian Starr (Violet, Charing Cross Theatre), puppet designer Lyndie Wright (Little Angel Theatre), puppet director Sarah Wright (Kneehigh's Brief Encounter), and movement and circus consultant Tina Koch.

Tickets for this wonderful production are on sale now, priced at £16 for adults and £14 for children. Each ticket is also subject to a booking fee of £1.50. Group rates are also available.

Photo credit: Helen Maybanks

Listing Details

Show: Zog
Venue: Storyhouse, Hunter Street, Chester, Cheshire, CH1 2AR
Dates: Friday 5th April to Sunday 7th April 2019
Times: Friday 5th April - 4:30pm / Saturday 6th April - 11am, 2pm, 4pm / Sunday 7th April 11am, 2pm.
Tickets: Adults £16 / Children £14 - each ticket is subject to a £1.50 booking fee / Group 10+ £12.50 each.
Duration - Approximately 1 hour.
Booking: This can be done online at www.storyhouse.com, by calling 01244 409113 or by visiting the ticket kiosks at Storyhouse, Hunter Street, Chester, Cheshire, CH1 2AR

For further details you can visit the Storyhouse website, or their social media pages on the following channels:

Website - www.storyhouse.com
Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/storyhouselive
Twitter - @storyhouselive
Instagram - @storyhouselive

Photo credit: Helen Maybanks

*Disclaimer - This post has been written based on a press release provided by BEA.

Wednesday, 13 February 2019

Dates for your Diary - Ben & Holly's Little Kingdom at St Helen's Theatre Royal - 23rd to 24th February 2019

Ben & Holly's Little Kingdom takes to the stage at St Helens Theatre Royal on the 23rd and 24th February 2019 in a show that is sure to delight the whole family!

Holly is a young Fairy Princess, who is still learning how to fly and her magic doesn't always go quite according to plan. Her best friend, Ben the Elf, doesn't have wings and he doesn't do magic, but he runs very fast and flies on the back of Gaston the Ladybird. They live in the Little Kingdom, a tiny land where flowers and grass rise high above them and every day is an adventure. So be sure to join Ben, Holly and their friends on their exciting, enchanting and magical musical adventure packed full of games, songs and laughter this February.

Photo by Dan Tsantilis 
Entertainment One's (eOne) Ben and Holly's Little Kingdom hails from the award-winning animation studio Astley Baker Davies, creators of the global preschool phenomenon Peppa Pig. Currently a top-rated show for pre-schoolers Ben and Holly's Little Kingdom airs daily on Nick Jr and on 5's Milkshake and has picked up numerous accolades including a BAFTA award, British Animation Award and an Emmy Award.

Chantelle Nolan, Theatre Manager said: "We are very excited to welcome Ben and Holly to St Helens Theatre Royal. It is certain to be one of the highlights of our season of family shows for 2019!"

For further information you can visit the Ben and Holly website or their social media pages on the following channels:

Website: www.benandhollylive.com
Facebook: www.facebook.com/benandhollylive
Twitter: @benandhollylive

Listing Details

Show - Ben and Holly's Little Kingdom
Venue - St Helens Theatre Royal
Dates - Saturday 23rd February and Sunday 24th February
Tickets* - Premium - Adults £21 / Child £19
Band 1 - Family (2 adults & 2 children) £60 / Adults £17 / Child (up to 16 years) £15 / Child (6-12 months) £11
Band 2 - Adults £15 / Child (up to 16 years) £13 / Child (6-12 months) £11

* Price inclusive of a £1 per seat transaction fee. On-line bookings subject to an additional 50p per seat on-line processing fee.

To book tickets you can visit the Theatre Royal Box Office, Corporation Street, St Helens, Merseyside, WA10 1LQ (Mon-Sat 10am til 5pm). Alternatively you can call 01744 756000 or visit the website at www.sthelenstheatreroyal.com


Lauren Martin as Holly - Photo by Dan Tsantilis
*Disclaimer: This is a press release. Details provided believed to be correct at time of writing, but are subject to change so would always recommend visitng the venue's own website in order to obtain the most up to date information.

Friday, 14 December 2018

Peter Pan at St Helens Theatre Royal - A Review

On Wednesday evening, St Helen's Theatre Royal & Regal Entertainments Ltd took us on a swashbuckling adventure, when we attended the press night for this years Christmas pantomime of Peter Pan! This was our fourth visit to St Helens Theatre Royal this year alone and if there is one thing we have learnt, it's that they certainly know how to put on a fantastic show! We know from past experiences that their pantomimes are always superb, but having never seen Peter Pan in panto form before, there was an added element of excitement as we took our seats ready for the show to begin.

The production features everything you could hope for - from upbeat well known songs to some musical favourites, exceptional choreography to fantastic flying, plenty of laughter and even a 3D scene thrown in too. Their pantomimes never disappoint and it is very clear to see that they have a fantastic team that have recognised exactly what families want, when coming to see their shows.

Photo Credit: David Munn Photography
The whole cast were excellent from start to finish and they are evidently a very talented team. Georgina Parkinson stars as Wendy Darling and she has the most beautiful singing voice making her vocal performances a pleasure to listen to. She suits the role perfectly and works extremely well alongside Peter Pan.

Kristina Rihanoff sparkles as the loveable but tempremental Tinkerbell and certainly adds some fairy magic. At one point during the show, she takes part in a dance off and being Strictly fans, it was great to see some wonderful moves on stage. Everything she took part in was done with elegance and pizzazz and we really enjoyed all of her performances!

Photo Credit: David Munn Photography
Captain Hook is played by the magnificent Louis Emerick who delivers the perfect pantomime villain. Although he is the ultimate baddie, his witty remarks, powerful confidence and comical relationship with Mrs Smee made him very entertaining to watch. The St Helens theatre-goers never failed to shout Boooooo when he took to the stage and it was great to see a lot of audience interaction throughout the show.

It was fantastic to see the lovely Lewis Devine playing the starring role of Peter Pan and having always viewed him as a comedian, we were intrigued as to how he would play a more serious role. Whilst there was less of the slapstick style comedy that we have seen from him in previous productions, his portrayal of Peter Pan showed that there is far more to him than just creating a giggle. He consistently wowed us on stage whether acting, singing, or simply interacting with the audience members. He definitely knows how to keep a crowd entertained and can always be depended on to deliver a wonderful performance.

Photo Credit: David Munn Photography
Resident Dame Si Foster has also become one of our panto favourites. In this years Christmas production he stars as Mrs Smee and his interaction with Captain Hook was absolutely hilarious at times. We loved his performance of Fernando & Gimme Gimme Gimme, which was a scene that I could have quite happily watched several times over.

Tigerlily is played by Abigail Middleton who has a fantastic stage presence and great vocals too. The pantomime also features some extremely talented children who were certainly stars in their own right. The two young boys who played John and Michael were wonderful and it was great to see some younger performers trusted with main roles. The show also involved plenty of fast paced dance and the juvenile dancers completed the choreographed moves with ease and always with a smile on their faces.

Photo Credit: David Munn Photography
We felt that there was a great music selection throughout the pantomime with something for everyone to enjoy. A particular highlight for me was seeing the whole audience sing along to George Ezra's Shotgun song, which had a lot of the children up on their feet singing and dancing away. My youngest son Riley absolutely loves this song, so he was delighted when it began to play. Be warned however that Baby Shark is also on the playlist, so parents be ready to get involved and sing along!

The 3D scene added a new element to the pantomime and it was great to have this incorporated into the show. One thing that I would say though is that if you are attending with very young children who scare easily, then it maybe best to watch without the glasses. There are parts where sharks, fish and crabs do jump out at you, which even caused some screams from the adults too. It is a lot of fun and the audience loved it!

Overall we had a wonderful time watching Peter Pan at St Helens Theatre Royal and we haven't stopped talking about it since. We enjoyed it so much that we have already planned a return visit in the New Year. We cannot wait to see the show again and we also intend on bringing several other family members for a fun filled afternoon. This production provides so much for families to enjoy, making Peter Pan the perfect pantomime to visit this Christmas.

Listing Details

Show - Regal Entertainments Ltd present Peter Pan
Dates - Saturday 8th December 2018 to Sunday 13th January 2019
Times - Performance times vary, so please visit the website for the most up to date information.
Venue - St Helens Theatre Royal, Corporation Street, St. Helens, Merseyside, WA10 1LQ

Tickets - From £11*
*All prices are inclusive of a £1 per seat transaction fee. On-line bookings are subject to an additional 50p per seat on-line processing fee.

Box Office - 01744 756000
Website - www.sthelenstheatreroyal.com
Twitter - @TheatreRoyalStH
Facebook - www.facebook.com/St-Helens-Theatre-Royal

Photo Credit: David Munn Photography
*Disclaimer - We were invited to attend the press night for the purpose of writing an honest review of our experience. All thoughts and opinions are my own unless otherwise stated.

Thursday, 11 October 2018

Disney on Ice presents Dream Big at the Manchester Arena - A Review

If you are a regular reader of the blog, you will already know of my love for Disney On Ice. We have attended numerous productions over the years and I can honestly say that I will never tire of watching the amazing dancers bring the Disney characters to life. It is a personal highlight on the calendar for me and we were very excited to be invited along to the Manchester opening night to experience Disney On Ice presents Dream Big!

From the moment we arrived, the Manchester Arena was full of smiles and excitement. There were children in costumes everywhere we turned, as princesses, heroes, flashing wands and twinkling lights filled the arena. Guests both young and old beamed with happiness waiting for the show to commence and as the lights began to dim, a wave of anticipation swept across the audience as the music began to play and the dancers took to the ice.

After a brief introduction by Mickey, Minnie and friends who encouraged the audience to get up on their feet and dance, we were treated to the main event, which kept the crowd captivated from start to finish. Mickey and Minnie did of course make regular appearances throughout the show and helped to connect each of the stories to the next.

First to take to the ice was Aladdin and we absolutely loved the fun and craziness involved with the opening market scene as Aladdin was trying to escape. This act went to another level though as Aladdin and Princess Jasmine performed a duet to a Whole New World which was absolutely amazing.

Exhibiting the most beautiful and skillful skating as they glided across the ice, my family and I were mesmerised and my youngest son Riley, could not believe his eyes when Aladdin skated around the ice rink holding Jasmine in the air using only one hand. The strength, skill and practice which must have gone into this routine must have been incredible, to make it appear so flawless thoughout. We have been hugely impressed by the skills shown in previous productions, but this one certainly stood out for us right from the start.


The Beauty and the Beast segment of the show was a real crowd pleaser, however I was left slightly disappointed mainly because the Beast didn't actually feature (well not in Beast form anyway). Whilst I really enjoyed the performance of Be Our Guest I felt that this could have been followed up with a Belle and Beast duet to the full song of Tale As Old As Time before concluding, which I am sure would have looked incredible upon the ice.

My personal favourite from the whole night was Moana and demigod Maui whose costume alone was extremely impressive. The duo were making their Manchester debut and Riley was delighted as we watched the fantastic routine to How Far I'll Go, which combined incredible ice skating moves with a powerful choreography that was mesmerising to watch. It was a performance that I am sure will inspire and encourage others to Dream Big and it is certainly one that my family and I will be talking about for some time.


The Little Mermaid has always been one of my favourite acts in previous Disney on Ice productions and so I was really happy to see that the Under the Sea routine had been included as part of Dream Big. The ice was full of bright colours and everyone clapped and danced along to the music as The Little Mermaid, Sebastian, Flounder and friends took us on a journey beneath the waves.

Other performances included Tangled, Cinderella and Sleeping Beauty, with the latter featuring a spectacular fire breathing dragon. The clever use of pyrotechnics creates small flames across the ice as the Prince battled with the dragon. My children were fascinated by this and kept asking me why the fire didn't melt the ice. To be honest I am not sure myself!


The final act was one that we have come to know and love from our last few visits to Disney on Ice and it never disappoints. It was the moment my youngest son Riley had been waiting all evening, as sisters Elsa and Anna took us on an icy adventure to the town of Arendelle, in a shortened version of the BAFTA and Academy Award® winning animated film Frozen.

Audiences sang along as stunning performances to Love Is An Open Door, For The First Time In Forever and Let It Go took place within the ice rink. Although there wasn't a large amount of scenery to support these performances, the music and skating was more than enough to keep us entertained in a routine packed with high flying spins and dance moves galore. Snow fell from the rooftop which added to the magic and created a beautiful wintry sight.

I had read a couple of reviews prior to attending the show, that stated that Disney on Ice presents Dream Big was more suited for girls, due to the amount of princesses that feature throughout, however I would definitely have to disagree. As well as the stunning princesses, there are also many heroes, stunts, and even a fire breathing dragon, to ensure that there is plenty to keep everyone entertained regardless of gender or age. My youngest son's favourite acts were from the Moana and Frozen characters and his highlight was singing Let It Go with his dad as Elsa took to the ice.


Overall we found Disney On Ice presents Dream Big to be absolutely incredible. This show has pulled out all the stops in creating something so magical and entertaining, which was an absolute pleasure to enjoy with my family in Manchester last night. Everything flowed so well and none of the segmented stories felt too long. I loved that Dream Big featured a wide range of characters so that audiences could be treated to a whole host of Disney stories on the ice, ranging from the classics such as Cinderella, to the modern day wonders such as Frozen and Moana. Last night's production literally blew me away and Feld Entertainment certainly did Dream Big when putting this magnificent show together.

Disney On Ice presents Dream Big will be in Manchester until the 14th October, before continuing on their UK tour. For the complete list of tour dates, please head to www.disneyonice.co.uk. You can also keep up to date on the latest developments through social media by visiting:

Facebook - www.facebook.com/DisneyOnIceUK
Twitter - @DisneyOnIce #DreamBig
YouTube - www.youtube.com/DisneyOnIce
Instagram - @DisneyOnIce

Listing Details

Show - Disney On Ice presents Dream Big
Dates - 10th to the 14th October 2018
Times - Wed, Thurs, Fri: 6:30pm / Sat & Sun: 10:30am, 2:30pm, 6:30pm
Venue - Manchester Arena, Manchester

Disney On Ice presents Dream Big UK Tour Dates

Manchester Arena - 10th October to 14th October 2018
Birmingham, Arena Birmingham - 19th October to 28th October 2018
Belfast, SSE Arena - 2nd November to 4th November 2018
Dublin, City West Hotel - 9th November to 11th November 2018
Sheffield, Fly DSA Arena - 14th November to 18th November 2018
Nottingham, Motorpoint Arena - 21st November to 25th November 2018
London, The O2, 26th December 2018 to 6th January 2019


Disclaimer: We were invited to Disney on Ice presents Dream Big, for the purpose of writing an honest review of the show. Thoughts and opinions are my own unless otherwise stated. Images provided by Disney on Ice. This post does not contain affiliate links.

Wednesday, 12 September 2018

Preview - Cinderella Pantomime at the Manchester Opera House - December 2018

Last Christmas we visited the Manchester Opera House, to see what my son described as 'The Most Epic Pantomime Ever" referring to Dick Whittington starring John Barrowman and The Krankies. It was one of the highlights for us of the festive period and we loved the show so much that we actually went to see it TWICE! Laden with special effects, comedy and plenty of laughter, it was no surprise to hear that it won the Special Entertainment category in the Manchester Theatre Awards.

When we left the show on the second occasion, we actually spotted some posters advertising this years pantomime of Cinderella. No cast had been announced at that time with it being so far in advance, but it certainly got us thinking as to who could be starring as the Handsome Prince or the Ugly Sisters and whether it could offer the same panto magic that John Barrowman and The Krankies had brought to the stage. Well I am very pleased to say that this years casting does not disappoint!

Cinderella is set to be the Fairy Godmother of all pantomimes and will be playing at the Manchester Opera House from the 8th December to the 30th December 2018. Earlier this year, they announced the first stars to be joining the line-up in what I consider to be sheer brilliance in role choice. The Ugly Sisters will be played by two television icons who are most recently known for their appearance on ITV's Manchester based soap Coronation Street......Connor McIntyre and Les Dennis!


Connor McIntyre recently starred as the ultimate villain on ITV's Coronation Street and quickly rose to fame as Pat Phelan. His evil antics and high-profile storylines quickly established him as one of soap-lands ultimate baddies. Other television credits include The Governer, A&E, Murder City, See No Evil, Wire in the Blood, Law and Order, London's Burning and Casualty with his film roles including The Be All and End All and Charlie Noads R.I.P. He is also no stranger to the stage and has appeared in The Comedy of Errors, One for the Road and Harry's Christmas.

Les Dennis is known for his presenting, comedy and acting, having being a firm family entertainment favourite since rising to fame on the 1974 talent show New Faces. He has had success in prime-time shows such as The Laughter Show and Family Fortunes, having hosted the latter for an incredible 15 years! Other film and television credits include Intimate Relations, Brookside, Hotel Babylon, Merseybeat, Extra's and Life's Too Short. In 2014 he joined the cast of Coronation Street initially as a petty criminal, but won the heart of both Gail Platt and the viewing audience, before his demise at the hands of fellow Ugly Sister Pat Phelan! His theatre work has included roles in Chicago, Spamalot, She Loves Me and Me and My Girl in the West End, as well as UK tours of Art, High School Musical, Hairspray, Legally Blonde and most recently playing the much-loved Uncle Fester in The Addams Family.


It has also been revealed, that stepping into the role of the handsome Prince Charming, will be the wonderfully talented Gareth Gates, who first rose to fame in 2002 as the runner-up on TV talent show Pop Idol. He has since sold an incredible 3.5 million records in the UK, released three albums and had four UK number one singles. Last year Gareth also opened his new performing arts school in Salford Quays called Fates Academy.

Gareth has appeared in theatre productions, which has seen him play Marius in the 25th anniversary tour of Les Miserables for Sir Cameron Mackintosh, as well as roles in Loserville at West Yorkshire Playhouse and the UK tours of Legally Blonde, Boogie Nights the Musical and Footloose. He has also regularly toured in the concert Mad About the Musicals. Gareth has also appeared on ITV's Dancing on Ice and The Big Reunion.

Michael Harrison, managing director of Qdos Entertainment said: "I'm absolutely delighted that Gareth Gates has agreed to bring his singing talent to our Manchester pantomime this Christmas. I'm sure Gareth will be the perfect ally for Cinderella as she battles the formidable Connor McIntyre and Les Dennis in the guise of her ugly step sisters."

Sheena Wrigley, Theatre Director for the Palace Theatre and Opera House, added "As well as being a terrific singer, Gareth has built an impressive theatre career and also has a great affinity to Manchester, having opened his performing arts academy in Salford Quays last year. He is a fantastic addition to our cast, alongside the previously announced Connor McInyre and Les Dennis, and we're excited to present another high-quality production to our audiences this Christmas."

Further casting is to be announced.

Cinderella will once again be produced by Qdos Entertainment, the world's biggest pantomime producer, with a production that is sure to delight and entertain audiences of all ages. Listing details and information regarding tickets can be found below.

Listing Details

Show - Cinderella
Dates - Saturday 8th December to Sunday 30th December
Times - Performance times vary, so please visit the ATG Tickets website for the most up to date information.
Ticket prices - From £12 (transaction fee will also apply)
Address - Opera House Manchester, 3 Quay Street, Manchester, M3 3HP
Box Office - 0844 871 3018 or for group bookings 0333 009 5390
Website - www.atgtickets.com/Manchester



*Disclaimer: This post contains an affiliate link, which means that I may receive a small commission, should you choose to purchase from this retailer.

Monday, 10 September 2018

Preview - The Snowman Tour 2018 comes to Warrington's Parr Hall

The summer holidays now seem like a distant memory, so as we enter September my thoughts now turn to the excitement and enjoyment of Christmas. The festive season is my absolute favourite time of year and as a family we enjoy many Christmas events and activities.

Most families will have their own little Christmas traditions, such as going to a pantomime, enjoying a breakfast with Santa or preparing and opening Christmas Eve boxes. For my family though, one of our favourite things to do, is to cuddle up on the sofa and enjoy The Snowman together on Christmas Eve, which is something I also did with my parents too, when I was a child.

I was therefore delighted to learn more about The Snowman Tour from Carrot Productions which is heading to Warrington Parr Hall for one day only on Thursday 20th December 2018. There will be two performances with one being at 1:30pm and another in the evening at 7pm.

Parr Hall is easily accessible by public transport with Warrington Bank Quay train station being only a two minute walk away and Warrington Central train station and Warrington Bus Station being an easy seven minute stroll. There is also limited parking available for patrons at the rear of the venue if you wish to visit by car.

 Photo Credit: © Tom Bangbala
Tickets are on sale now and audience members will be in for an absolute treat as families can enjoy a beautiful presentation of this iconic film, whilst being accompanied by a live orchestra. A young soloist, who is local to the area, will also be performing the breathtaking 'Walking in the Air' solo and I cannot wait to see this song being performed live.

My youngest son who is five, has never experienced the wonder of a live orchestra before, so this is set to be the perfect introduction for him. With music being performed by some of the top musicians in the country, many of whom are members of orchestras such as The Halle and the BBC Philarmonic, this is sure to be an incredible moment for him and I cannot wait to see his face light up with wonder and delight!

The Snowman experience will also include a special visit from the organisation's very own snowman and I am sure that this will be very magical for the younger members of the audience.

Photo Credit: © Gareth Widdowson
Visitors to the Warrington performances, will also be treated to a second animated film of the award-winning book* 'The Bear and the Piano', written by David Litchfield, with a musical score by Daniel Whibley and narration by the wonderful Joanna Lumley. This is sure to add to the overall experience and my family and I are really looking forward to enjoying this production.


However, if Warrington Parr Hall is too far for you to travel, then don't worry, as this magical experience will be visiting a total of 16 different venues across the country including seven cathedrals in Blackburn, Chester, Durham, Gloucester, Lichfield, Liverpool and Winchester. A full list of all the tour dates and venues can be found here: https://www.carrotproductions.com/the-snowman/.

Some venues will also feature a special screening of a world exclusive, in the form of 'A Donkey's Tale' which tells the heart warming story of Dillon. An ordinary donkey, with an extraordinary dream, which takes him on a life-changing journey. This has been specially written and composed by Daniel Whibley and has been commissioned by Carrot Productions for audiences to enjoy. To find out whether your nearest venue is showing 'The Bear and the Piano' or 'A Donkey's Tale', then you can visit the Carrot Productions website to obtain the most up to date information.

Tickets are expected to sell out fast, so for further information or tour details please visit: www.carrotproductions.com

If you would like to get a feeling of an evening with The Snowman, then please watch the video below:


Disclaimer: We are being given 4 complimentary tickets for the purpose of providing an honest review of the tour later this year. All opinions are my own. Details provided are believed to be correct at time of writing, but are subject to change. I would therefore always recommend visiting the companies own website to obtain the most up to date information. *This post contains an affiliate link.

Wednesday, 8 August 2018

Paw Patrol Live! "The Great Pirate Adventure" - Review

After a very early start this morning, we made our way on the train to the James Street Station in Liverpool, which is a short distance from the Echo Arena. We enjoyed a nice stroll along the waterfront, whilst Riley became increasingly excited as we approached the venue. Everywhere we turned there were children dressed as their favourite Paw Patrol characters and Riley was no exception as he skipped along in his Chase costume.

On arrival at the venue, we collected our tickets from the box office and made our way through the bag check and entry line, before being handed a cardboard pirate flag by a member of staff for Riley to wave throughout the show. There was plenty of merchandise on sale including some Tracker soft toys which I have not seen before, but as with any live entertainment venue they were slightly overpriced and fortunately I managed to distract Riley as we made our way past the stall.

Our seats were located in the lower tier which provided a great view of the stage. I noticed that the floor seats were all the same level which would have annoyed Riley if there was a grown-up sat in front of him, so I was more than happy with our location as it meant that we could see the stage perfectly.

As the start time of 10am approached, the music began to play and we were provided with a 3 minute warning that the show was about to begin. Shortly after the curtains opened and we were introduced to Cap'n Turbot on the stage who gets into trouble whilst trying to take a photograph of the Pirate Parrot. Meanwhile Mayor Goodway, Ryder and the Paw Patrol team are enjoying preparing for the Adventure Bay Pirate Day Celebration with plenty of singing and dancing for families to enjoy.


Paw Patrol Live! "The Great Pirate Adventure" allows audiences to join Chase, Marshall, Rubble, Skye, Rocky and Zuma as they embark on a quest to save Cap'n Turbot from a dark and mysterious cavern. However, whilst completing their rescue mission, the pups discover a secret pirate treasure map that leads them on an epic journey to find the treasure, with lots of twists and turns along the way.

The sound quality was fantastic and as the loud theme tune echoed around the arena, children were up out of their seats and dancing along. The costumes were superb, just like in their previous tour of Paw Patrol Live! Race to the Rescue and a lot of effort has clearly gone into the production. Riley's face lit up as Rubble & Chase appeared in their vehicles, which again had great attention to detail.

As the Paw Patrol team solved the treasure map clues, Mayor Humdinger created problems, which the team managed to work their way through using each pups special skills. Towards the end of the show the pups found themselves in a sticky situation as they became trapped in sinking sand, but Skye and the fabulous Tracker managed to rescue them much to the delight of the audience! Riley was so happy to see Tracker make an appearance and he loved the song that welcomed him to the stage.

The show had a running time of 85 minutes with a 15 minute interval, which did start to feel quite long towards the end. Riley usually manages to sit an hour at a show comfortably so this was a little longer than he was used to, but with the help of some snacks there was no issue and he managed to hold his concentration. He also asked to see the show again as soon as it had ended, so the running time clearly hadn't bothered him.

Overall we found it to be a great show that was well suited to its target audience. The costumes, music and scenery were great and the story was very easy to follow. The atmosphere was very relaxed so it was great to see everyone up on their feet dancing and singing along, making it fantastic children's entertainment.


Tickets are on sale now and are available to purchase from www.pawpatrollive.co.uk

The remaining tour dates are as follows:
  • Wednesday 8th August - Echo Arena, Liverpool
  • Saturday 11th and Sunday 12th August - Manchester Arena, Manchester
  • Wednesday 15th August - Fly DSA Arena, Sheffield
  • Saturday 18th August - Arena Birmingham
  • Wednesday 22nd August - Motor Point Arena, Cardiff
  • Saturday 25th and Sunday 26th August - The SSE Arena, Wembley, London
  • Wednesday 29th August - First Direct Arena, Leeds
  • Saturday 1st and Sunday 2nd September - Windsor Hall, Bournemouth International Centre
  • Saturday 8th and Sunday 9th September - Brighton Centre, Brighton
*Disclaimer - We were invited as guests to the show for the purpose of providing an honest review of the production. Opinions and thoughts are my own.

Monday, 16 July 2018

Dates for your Diary - Beauty and the Beast October Pantomime at St Helens Theatre Royal - 20th to 28th October 2018

Regal Entertainments are bringing their enchanting panto Beauty and the Beast to St Helens audiences this October half term and producers have now also revealed the full cast.

Following the success of the production at Easter 2017, the classic fairytale will return to St Helens Theatre Royal from Saturday 20th to 28th October and will star Channel 5's Milkshake! presenter Kiera-Nicole Brennan.

She will be joined by Andrew Geater, Lewis Devine, Maddie Hope-Coelho, Philip McGuinness and Si Foster.

Get ready to go on an adventure in this family friendly pantomime that tells the timeless story of Belle - the beautiful young woman who falls in love with the most unexpected of princes, who has been cursed to look like a hideous beast.

Keira-Nicole Brennan leads the cast as Belle. Keira has recently graduated from the prestigious Brit School and is best known as the host of popular children's breakfast show Milkshake! She is currently the youngest presenter in Channel 5 history after landing the role at just 19 and proving herself a hit with little viewers.


Starring opposite Keira, Andrew Geater takes the role of Beast. Andrew returns to St Helens after a successful run as Dandini in the venues Easter panto, Cinderella. His impressive vocal talents have seen him perform across the globe, including as a member of world renowned group The 12 Tenors.

The hilarious Lewis Devine is also set to return to the Theatre Royal stage taking on the role of French Frank. After leaving audiences rolling in the theatre aisles laughing with his recent performance as Buttons in Cinderella earlier this year, and as Muddles in Snow White last Christmas, Lewis is guaranteed to bring the same hilarity this October.

Returning to the role of Gaston is Theatre Royal favourite Philip McGuinness. Philip is a hit with Theatre Royal audiences and has appeared in numerous productions including Tin Man in the Wizard of Oz and Captain Hook in Peter Pan.

BBC Pitch Battle star Maddie Hope-Coelho will bring lots of sparkle to the stage as Fairy Rose, Maddie returns after her mesmerising performance as Dorothy in February's Wizard of Oz.

Completing the cast is resident dame Simon Foster who returns to the role of Potty Polly guaranteeing hilarious gags that are sure to keep audiences laughing.

Will the beast learn to love and be loved? Will the spell be broken in time for all to live happily ever after? Come down to St Helens Theatre Royal this October and find out.

Theatre manager Chantelle Nolan said: "We are delighted to announce the cast for our upcoming panto. There is a huge array of talented performers with some familiar faces as well as some St Helen's Theatre Royal newcomers. It promises to be a fab show and will be a great treat for the whole family during October half-term".

Listing Details

Show: Regal Entertainments Ltd present: Beauty and the Beast
Venue: St Helens Theatre Royal, Corporation Street, St Helens, Merseyside, WA10 1LQ
Dates: 20th October to 28th October
Times: Daily 1pm / Fri - Sun 1pm & 5pm
Tickets: From £12* (*All prices are inclusive of a £1 per seat booking fee. On-line bookings are subject to an additional 50p per seat on-line processing fee.)
Website: www.sthelenstheatreroyal.com
Facebook: www.facebook.com/St-Helens-Theatre-Royal
Twitter: @TheatreRoyalStH

Bookings can be made in person at the Theatre Royal Box Office, Corporation Street, St Helens, Merseyside, WA10 1LQ (Mon-Sat 10am-5pm). Alternatively, call 01744 756000 or log on to www.sthelenstheatreroyal.com.

Disclaimer: Details provided are correct at time of writing but are of course subject to change. I would always recommend visiting the sites own website in order to obtain the most up to date information.