Panto beanstalk points the way back to post-lockdown life

Among the stars of the upcoming Jack and the Beanstalk panto at

Among the stars of the upcoming Jack and the Beanstalk panto at Sheringham Little Theatre, are, from left, Harry Wyatt, Olly Westlake and Charlie Randall. - Credit: SLT/Richard Batson

A panto character and his magical beanstalk will help show people the way up and out of any lingering lockdown lows.

'Jack and the Beanstalk', running at Sheringham Little Theatre and Great Yarmouth's St George's Theatre, will chart the youngster’s journey from being trapped in the house with his mum to rediscovering the outside world.

Writer and director Nick Earnshaw, the venue’s regular panto creator, said: “There will be all the usual panto magic, music and comedy - but with a topical message of trying to show people they can once again get out and enjoy themselves.”

Nick Earnshaw, creator of this year's Jack and the Beanstalk panto at Sheringham Little Theatre. 

Nick Earnshaw, creator of this year's Jack and the Beanstalk panto at Sheringham Little Theatre. - Credit: SLT

He added that his training with panto legend Eric Potts – a nationally-acclaimed writer, director and dame in festive fun across the UK - had helped him shape his own panto writing style.

“One piece of advice that always has helped is using the Ladybird book stories as a base to make sure you get the storytelling elements clear within the show and then add a modern twist to the classic story,” Mr Earnshaw said.


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The show will follow the pattern of last year’s festive show Rapunzel, using a smaller cast, for a shorter concentrated hour long show full of action, song, dance, gags and special effects.

It will again by streamed to primary schools nationwide thanks to a link up with the Norfolk Music Hub and educational music experts Charanga at a special December 16 performance in partner venue St George’s Theatre, Great Yarmouth.

Last year the show was seen by more than 200,000 pupils across the UK, who will learn the songs beforehand and be encouraged to dress up on the day of the live screening.

Debbie Thompson, Sheringham Little Theatre director.

Debbie Thompson, Sheringham Little Theatre director. - Credit: SLT/Richard Batson

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Theatre director Debbie Thompson said: “Our panto was a real boost for locked down children last year, and the only way they could see live festive fun."

The 160-seater theatre is still only using 100 of them, and families wanting extra space should call the box office to discuss their booking.

The live theatre panto shows are: St George's – December 11-19 (1pm and 5pm), Little Theatre - December 21-23 (1pm and 5pm), Christmas Eve at 10am and 1pm and back to 1pm and 5pm for December 26-31.

For tickets and prices visit www.stgeorgestheatre.com or call 01493 331484 or www.sheringhamlittletheatre.com 01263 822347.

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