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Warming My Jewels!

December 26, 2013

Monday 23rd December 2013

The weather outside is frightful..It sure is not delightful.. We have very strong winds and stinging icy rain. Inside the magical kingdom of Venue Cymru there are toasty heaters that have made a big difference backstage. They give the chilly wings an orange glow. In my Quick Change room the industrial fan heater is making the fourteen changes a great deal more comfortable. Getting into a jar of Marmite is my chilliest experience- You either love it or hate it! I found myself warming my jewels by the heater today- not something you hear often is it? My large necklace (made for me by the dear late Audrey Burgess- Madam Kuldana) is freezing when you slap it on, being the size of a skillet- now it isn’t such a shock!

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In all my joy and glee at being warm, and because I was not paying attention I managed to make an entrance without my boobs! Again, not something you hear often- only in Pantoland! It would have to be the scene where I draw attention to them too. I enter, and John says “Ahh Queen Blodwyn! I really admire your enormous derriere”, meaning my bustle. I get it wrong and do a Bra Gag. John’s face told me something was amiss.Not just amiss but missing. My boobs were having a lie-in in the dressing room! You can imagine the fun that was had with the audience realising, and merriment ensued! I will NOT be forgetting them again!

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One of the lovely things about Llandudno, and there are a great many, is the friendliness and kindness of its people. They take time to chat, they are hugely polite and so it was I was hugged as I left the Habit Tea rooms by a delightful elderly couple who looked after us at the Mayoral “do” the other night, and had been in to see the show. Their genuine delight on seeing the pantomime was just very touching. They told me that they hadn’t laughed so much in ages, and how beautiful it was, and their genuine warmth was overwhelming.

CHRISTMAS EVE

December 24th 2013

The weather has calmed down a lot today, thank goodness. Folk all over the UK will be travelling home from their various pantomimes tonight, and back again on Boxing Day Morning. We need this calm weather to stay in place.

Sadly one Panto performer won’t be home for Christmas. Brian Godfrey Doyen of Dames is poorly, and will be spending Christmas in hospital in London. I texted him a few times today in case they were releasing him, but it looks like after Boxing Day now. We are all thinking of you Brian. Hope you feel better very very soon.

The audiences today were amazing. Very full houses and a marvelous response in both shows. They got frisky in the Twelve Days of Christmas routine and managed to hurl the toilet rools in to the pit, and I managed to retrieve them by carefully lying down and reaching over to where Neil on drums could pass them back, having untangled them from his kit. Another thing you don’t hear of often!!

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In between shows we had the Juveniles Party in their room. The first of two. Great food and a very jolly time crammed in there! I’m hoping to publish a couple of “Babe Blogs” after Christmas Day, along with some photos.

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As soon as the second show finished people dashed for their cars. The Christmas exodus was starting. I wonder if at this time of night if most of the cars on the country’s roads are full of panto performers criss-crossing the UK?

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It will be like this in four nights time! In just a few days the show will be over and, if it runs true to form, everyone will be gone from the building in the twinkling of an eye. Two years ago I remember taking my make-up off, and by the time I came down onstage to check my packed frocks, all the cast had gone- all hoping to get home before midnight. The time will now speed by- we have a Babes Party, a Last Night Party (on the day before we end), a meal at the Albert.. Daniel Dawson will be visiting to tell me about the eleven or twelve pantomimes he has seen to date! All this and eight shows!

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At the end of the night I had a quick drink at the Cottage Loaf pub before heading back to the eerily empty hotel!

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CHRISTMAS DAY 2013

Awoke and looked out on sunshine and a calm sea. The Llandudno promenade was alive with people doing what it was meant for- they were promenading! In some cases the mobility scooters were outnumbering the walkers, and there were many dogs.

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Met up with Vicky and Andy and had a lovely Christmas Lunch at The Seahorse- a restaurant near the Empire that has amazing seafood. We walked up to the King’s Head, the oldest pub in Llandudno, and had a drink- it has an open fire and people can bring their dogs along. I ended up playing ball with a Jack Russell, a Tibetan Terrier and a Patterdale Terrier- dog heaven!

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In search of the cosy couch, Vicky, Andy and I ended up at the Imperial Hotel, with the two comfy sofas and huge Christmas Tree, joined by Charlotte and her Dad, Matt, Shane, Lisa Fairy, and Grace. A few drinks on the manager of the Hotel came over and invited us to help ourselves at their Hotel buffet- tables crammed with Salmon, Turkey, Beef.. more tables creaking with cheese and cheesecake. He told us that tomorrow he and 125 of his guests will be coming along to see the panto! Another shining example of the hospitality you say in Llandudno- Thank you Imperial! We tucked in to the buffet and the waifs and strays had a superb Christmas, tree and all!

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Headed for the Can Y Bae, and an hour of panto magic listening to Barbara Windsor’s “Oh Yes It Is” on Radio 2. I recorded my bits a month or so ago, and originally it was going out on New Year, so I didn’t plug the Llandudno Panto as, in real time we’d be finished! It was a great journey through panto with interviews with Gyles Brandreth, Su Pollard, The Krankies, and the legend that is Stanley Baxter! Barbara was great fun and it was like having a jolly chat about our favourite subject, which, lets face it, it was!

“Oh Yes It Is” is repeated on catch up for the next seven days and, I think gets a repeat. Its all on the BBC website, along with info on Stanley Baxters Panto Perfection, a radio broadcast for Christmas. Enjoy!

Merry Christmas!

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