Eastergate Players launch into pantomime!

Georgina Jackson, who is playing Vanity (Bad Fairy) and Carrie Allen who is playing Virtue, the fairy Queen
Georgina Jackson, who is playing Vanity (Bad Fairy) and Carrie Allen who is playing Virtue, the fairy Queen

Eastergate Players get 2016 off to a sparkling fun-filled start with their annual pantomime.

Based in the Six Villages area, they are offering Mother Goose this year, with performances from Tuesday-Saturday January 26-30 at 7.30pm and a Saturday matinee at 2pm.

Carrie Allen, a Chichester Players regular, is delighted to be making both her Eastergate Players debut and her panto debut – combining it all with being mum to two young children. In fact, it was pregnancy which prevented her from making her panto debut last year.

Carrie is delighted at the way the Eastergate Players have welcomed her and at the show that is coming together, with rehearsals proving a particularly-happy experience.

“Eastergate Players are very well known in the area for their panto, and over the years they have done most of the traditional ones. Now they are doing a very, very traditional one. It’s a fantastic show that is going to appeal to young and old. There is a lot of singing and dancing and lots of humour, and it is a really strong cast this year. We really want to get as many people as possible to come along. The cast is predominantly made up of people in the Barnham, Eastergate, Westergate, Chichester area, and I should think there must be something like 50 people involved in the production in all, cast and crew. There are some youngsters and people right up to their 60s and 70s.”

And for Carrie it’s her first dip into the waters of panto as a performer: “Because I am with the Chichester Players, I am generally doing other productions, but last year I really wanted to do Cinderella, but I was heavily pregnant.This year I was able to audition and got the part of the Fairy Queen. I have had a marvellous time rehearsing. For me personally, I was just looking for something a little bit different. I have never been in a production where there was all dancing and singing, and to do that in rehearsals every Monday was just such a nice, really feel-good thing. You can’t help but enjoy yourself.

“You just throw yourself into it, and it is just such good, clean family fun. My four-and-a-half year-old is really excited about coming to see it. There is lots of humour and lots of fun – just the kind of thing you would want to go and see as a mother of two!

“The Eastergate Players have built a reputation for themselves over the years for their shows having a really good standard, and I don’t think anyone would mind saying this one is going to be really good. The standard of singing and acting is really high. We are all amateurs, but we have got some really talented people taking part.”

It all adds up to a busy start to the New Year for Carrie who has just gone back to work following maternity leave: “But this is just such a lovely thing to be able to do. They are a lovely company.”

Tickets from windmillpetsupplies@aol.co.uk ; 07544760296; or www.eastergateplayers.org.uk.

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