Mar 2015 31

Theatre-by-the Lake, Keswick hosted the County Finals of the Panto Competition on Saturday 21st and Sunday 22nd February. The atmosphere was charged with excitement and the audience were in a state of eager anticipation waiting to watch the top 5 district pantomimes.

The traditional tale of Sleeping Beauty was beautifully told by Crook YFC with actors resplendent in sumptuous costumes. The judges praised Princess Rosebud played by Annie Perris for her lovely singing voice, whilst the entire cast were praised for their dancing and in particular the umbrella dance.

The performances continued in fine style with Brampton’s polished and accomplished interpretation of Aladdin. The mother, son dynamic between Wishee Washee and Widow Twankey was very amusing, with Joe Bowman and Chris Laird giving excellent performances in their respective roles.

Saturday evening closed with Kent Estuary’s “Panto Pandemonium”, a mix of good, evil, tiny giants and a whole host of pantomime stories inter twined. Dennis Sharp and Sam Wilkinson as Spotty and Grotty respectively kept the audience entertained with their truly awful jokes whilst hamming it up as the evil sidekicks of Emma Littlewood’s wicked witch.

Drigg YFC, gave their all on Sunday night in their pantomime “All at Sea”, with strong performances from all cast members. The judges commented on the excellent costumes and dance routines and in particular the pirates singing and dancing.

Eden YFC provided the grand finale, with their very Cumbrian version of “Jack and the Beanstalk”. The hill billy dance routines were entertaining and the use of karaoke added a fun twist. Craig Robinson as Bertha, Jack’s mother brought much merriment to the proceedings, whilst Emily Dickinson as Nellie Blether provided the link throughout the show.

After much deliberation, the judges awarded first prize to Brampton YFC, 2nd place went to Eden Valley YFC and 3rd place to Drigg YFC. Best Actor went to Joe Bowman as Wishee Washee and Best Actress was awarded to Kelly Cannon.

The top 3 competitors or clubs from all the competitions will go through to the Northern Area Weekend at Hexham on the 7th and 8th March.

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