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Shrewsbury’s Theatre Severn panto Sleeping Beauty is the best yet – oh yes it is!
22 Dec 2013
by Kirsty Smallman

I know it’s the time of year when there’s plenty of repeats on the television but this isn’t a repeat blog – I promise!

But you may have heard me say the annual pantomime at Theatre Severn in Shrewsbury is the best yet – yes I said the same last year.

But this year the producer’s of Sleeping Beauty – Evolution Productions – (owned by Telford lad Paul Hendy and his wife Emily Wood) was nothing but show-stopping, amazing and most definitely the best yet! No really it was!

And I know if we fast forward 12 months I will be saying the same thing about their production of Peter Pan to be staged at Theatre Severn in 2014.

Without giving too much away for those who still haven’t seen it, this year’s Sleeping Beauty includes non-stop humour for the youngsters to the oldies (children to grandparents and even great-grandparents and anyone in between!)

The production includes the obligatory water pistols, the bench and a certain song (regulars will know what that is!) and a little extra such as a spectacular fire-breathing dragon and an array of fantastic, lavish costumes.

Brad Fitt (director) was this year enjoying the flamboyant costumes as Nurse Nelly and was yet again my favourite character (simply humour at its best!) – whilst my sons voted for the Prince and Jangles (last year’s Billy!), my mum was a fan of King Eric (our very own Eric Smith from BBC Radio Shropshire), and my husband probably liked the witches and the fairy – not sure why but other men in the audience may be able to tell me why!

And for the best scene – the bathroom! Water and laughs for all! (I won’t spoil it any further!)

For us as a family which involves two boys aged two and four and the running of three businesses between us, life can be hectic but the annual panto is one day where we all stop and enjoy the show and obviously invite the grandparents along too.

We should be proud of Theatre Severn and the brilliant facilities, shows and production companies it attracts – as proud as Paul Hendy is of being a Shropshire lad!

As I write this I have just returned from a family meal at The Grazing Cow in Lawley where Paul and his family were also enjoying a pre-festive meal.

A welcome celebration for the Hendy family no doubt as Paul and his family take a much deserved break from dashing around the country loyally visiting the theatres where their shows are being performed year including Canterbury, Chatham, Crawley, Croydon, Sheffield, St Albans and Yeovil.

The combination of being the most unorganised person this year (work took over the diary a little!) and this year’s Theatre Severn panto being a sell-out resulted in us having to take our two young children to the evening performance (all matinees were a sell out!) so take it from me if you want a specific day or time for Peter Pan next year then book it now – yes now the tickets are on sale now! I’ll be buying mine and think I’ll go for Christmas Eve next year.

But their young age became irrelevant as they were star struck and failed to speak for the whole show – the only movement was when the two year old covered his face every time the “nasty witch” came on stage!

But don’t wait until Christmas to visit Theatre Severn – I’ve already got my tickets for Peppa Pig, Postman Pat and Bananas in Pyjamas. Oh and we may even try an adult show at the theatre if we can fit it in in between our children’s hectic theatre schedule!

Visit www.theatresevern.co.uk for the full 2014 programme or call the box office on 01743 281281 to check availability for Sleeping Beauty which runs until Sunday January 12th or to pre-book tickets for Peter Pan.

J&PR are a Shropshire PR agency covering Shrewsbury, Telford, north Shropshire, south Shropshire and parts of Mid and North Wales. As well as working with businesses, organisations and events across the region on PR campaigns J&PR run regular DIY PR Training Courses and DIY Digital PR Training Courses at venues in the county.