Panto dames get expert tips

Judy Crane, James Lavender, Rosalyn Yarham and Shane Armstrong by Jeanette Bolton-Martin.

Judy Crane, James Lavender, Rosalyn Yarham and Shane Armstrong by Jeanette Bolton-Martin. - Credit: Jeanette Bolton-Martin

Panto dames have been getting tips on how to make themselves ready to wow audiences with hands-on make-up techniques.

James Lavender and Shane Armstrong, who play wicked siblings Herni and Veruca in this year's festive production of Cindrella, were taught how to beautify themselves by students from The Garage in Norwich.

Rosalyn Yarham from East Runton and Judy Crane from North Walsham, took part in the six-week course, which was run in association with Sheringham Little Theatre.

And once they had learned how to do the basics, the pair were invited to reveal their top make-up tips to the burly panto dames.

Mrs Yarham who works as a sales assistant in Cromer taught Mr Armstrong how to accentuate his eyes and lips and use glue and concealer to hide his eyebrows.

She said; 'The course was really interesting and it was nice to be able to practice what we have learned.'

Judy Crane, who works part time at The Pavilion Theatre in Cromer, demonstrated her skills on Mr Lavender.

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She said: 'I enjoyed the course too and you can have real fun with pantomime characters, particularly a dame, as everything is so much bigger and bolder.'

Cinderella opened at Sheringham earlier this month and runs until Saturday January 2.

Mr Armstrong said: 'The show has been going very well indeed. It was great having the make-up session and picking up so many wonderful tips.'

Mr Lavender, who learned how to draw panto eyelashes to his face and fake brows on his forehead, said; 'The panto is fast moving and at one-point, after a practically messy scene, we have to reapply our make-up very quickly backstage so the session with Judy and Rosalyn was a great help.

'We have been given lots of great advice, and you never know when we might use it again. Who knows, we might end up so good at it that we decided to get ourselves dolled up like this next time we go out on a Saturday night out.'

Written by West End star, Killian Donnelly, who is currently starring in Kinky Boos at London's Adelphi Theatre and is known for his appearances in Les Miserables, The Phantom of the Opera and Memphis, it is a dizzy delight of singing, dancing and festive fun.

Mr Donnelly cleverly combines the traditional plot of Cinderella with humour and a modern twist. It is set around the Christmas and New Year period with the prince finally meeting his princess at his New Year's Eve party.

Cinderella is played by Melissa Potts with humour provided by Rik Warren as Buttons the servant. The prince is played by Kyle Fraser.

The show runs on December 26, 27, 28, 29, 30 and 31, and January 1 and 2 with shows at 2pm and 6pm.

For more information or to book tickets call 01263 822347 or visit