St. Andrew’s Pantomime Group
“Keeping Pantomime in the Community”
At last it was finished, a brand new community centre ! The question was, what should be done in it? After much thought, a Pantomime came bubbling forth from the ideas pot and so, in 1970, “The St Andrew’s Pantomime” was born.
Aladdin was the first show to tread the boards, with all the familiar characters; Widow Twankey, Abanazaar and Wishee Washee. Much like Coronation Street, they all suspected it wouldn’t last, but here we still are 42 shows and still going strong!
Many of the Group’s members from that first production are still involved in the production team and Steven Roddy, who played the Slave of The Lamp in 1970, is still here performing his socks off on stage in 2012.
Over the years the Pantomime has built up a deserved reputation for quality, and has seen many of its performers move onto take up a career in the dramatic arts including members who have moved on to star in West End shows! Every year the Group chooses several charitable causes to donate the proceeds to and in the past 15 years has donated over £35,000 to a number of different charities.
Recently we started a children’s group, the Starlight Youth Group. The aim of this is to involve children up to the age of 16 in all aspects of drama from front of house, to writing, to backstage and of course acting and directing.
In 2013 we were awarded the prestigious Duke of York award for Service to the community.
The Pantomime prides itself on Professional contributions to the show’s Choreography and Musical Direction as well as the superb backcloths, sets and costumes on display – a far cry from 1970, when costumes and scenery were thin on the ground, which, incidentally, was where most of the lines were written too !