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A Dame’s Diary: Friday 28th December

December 29, 2012

Thursday brought two packed houses.The streets of Wolverhampton are busy, but nothing I imagine like the streets of Birmingham, or the Arndale Centre, Bluewater and lakeside! The sales make getting a cup of coffee or a meal nigh impossible! In search of something warming- and a change from sandwiches, which we survive on between shows, I ordered a bowl of soup in a café. Forty minutes later I abandoned it! I found a take-away offering soup.

“Do you have any soup?” “I’ll go and look”. The lady returned. “Yes”.

“ Can I have some please”. “I’ve only been here a month. I don’t know how to do it”.

Exit mumbling under breath. Yes, I got another sandwich! It’s all glamour here in the wonderful world of show-biz!

Between shows we restarted “Fat Club”, or Keep Fit regime instigated by Paul. It is his birthday today, and you’d think he’d be kind, but no. We were boot camped into a complaining collective, but all agreed we needed the work-out. While we did sit ups and push ups – never easy in lashes- some of the crew practiced stilt walking skills, with Crew Bob getting the hang of walking in the Giant’s enormous boots, helped by Alex. It is a bit like moonwalking, as you have to lift the stilt boot quite high to take each step.

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Both shows were very jolly. The show speeds past- I only have one short break in the whole of act one and two when I am not changing, and that is a few minutes in the quick change with my thermos of tea. Yes, I told you it was glamour all the way! Sometimes Daisy the Cow and I can be found in the alley which is just the other side of the door to the Quick Change, cooling off in the evening air. It is very mild still, and the backstage gets very warm by second show. Apparently I will be getting a fan tomorrow. This could involve someone waiting at Stage Door with an autograph book, but I think they mean the electric variety!

To celebrate Paul the Giant’s Birthday, a gang of us went to an Italian Restaurant after the show and had a very lovely evening. Such a change to eat hot food for once! The restaurant owner was delightful and kept plying us with bottles of wine- he told us he had fond memories of Messers Biggins And Zerdin dining there often when they did panto. Chris knows a good restaurant when he sees one!

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Well, its Friday, and the houses are packed as ever. Can’t get over how intimate it feels- you can reach out to these lovely Victorian Auditoriums, they bring the audience so close to you, as compared to modern theatres. When I’m doing my feeble exercises between shows I find myself not excercising, but using it as an excuse to look at the ornate plasterwork, the carving and gilding in the proscenium and on the ceiling. This one I believe was designed by Phipps, and seems to have an agricultural theme- no goddesses or cherubs, but lots of what looks like wheat sheaves, open pods and pastoral designs. Maybe I should be concentrating more on push ups and sit ups!

Niki did today’s keep fit session- it involved a lot of fast skipping, so i kept out of this. I don’t need to do anything to my legs- they ache enough in high heels on a raked stage without further duress!Skipping furiously were the wardrobe contingent- Fiona, Bec and Si, together with Nicola, Paul and myself. I was the one lying on the gym mat staring at the architecture.

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Half way through the week of twelve shows. Time flies. Hard to believe that this time last year I was packing ready for the Panto to finish on December 30th.If you venture on to the Skype Website (and Skype in the classroom) you should find a great short video showing my mate John Evans from Llandudno as Mr Smee- Skypeing live to Great Ormond Street Hospital, and my good self Skypeing schools in the UK in my guise as Dame Trott! You can also view it on:

http://www.solondon.co.uk/peter-pan-panto-in-llandudno-and-london/

Great news tonight that Vincent Hayes has been awarded the MBE in The Queen’s New Year’s Honours! Huge congratulations Vincent! The Brick Lane Music Hall and its forthcoming Grown-Ups Pantomime is hugely honoured by this award. A very worthy recognition of all the hard work from Vincent and his team at Silvertown’s Music Hall!

Ended the evening back at the Hotel with a drink with Sherrie, Ben and Paul, putting the world to rights!

One Comment
  1. Ian Carr permalink

    saw the show friday, geat! good to see a show that comes across so well that everyone comes over as working so well ,the ensamble, princeples all react beatutifully well done all! my first panto irecall wasdody about 68 as humpty dumpty, since most from tripp,lacy , scott, inman ,first with bary howard with mike yarwood and david nixon(coventry cc.77) rikki faulton(first time saw the bathroom ) this show is good and has pros who stand out wolverhampton is lucky! will leave afew more messages on the ibhs message board ive disccoverd on pantos ive seen, but well done wolverhampton

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