Search

There’s nothing like a dame-as veteran Queen’s Theatre performer Simon knows so well

PUBLISHED: 11:00 30 November 2012

Queen's Theatre panto

Queen's Theatre panto

Archant

»There are lots of things that make a panto a magical experience, but for Cut to the Chase actor Simon Jessop the most important thing is the dame.

Behind the greasepaint: Curtain up on festive fun

-About 30,000 people come to watch the Queen’s Theatre pantomime every year

-There are 60 performances of Jack and the Beanstalk between December 1 - January 12- that’s about 140 hours of solid acting for the theatre’s resident group of actors/musicians, Cut to the Chase this panto season!

-Simon Jessop, who plays the Dame Trott in Jack and the Beanstalk, has played the panto dame at the Queen’s for three years

-John Halstead played the dame in nine pantomimes at the Queen’s from 1979 onwards (often playing 100 performances per show!) while Chris MacDonnell played the dame six times from 1998 onwards

-The Queen’s very first pantomime was Cinderella in 1953

-Acting legends Joan Plowright and Bernard Cribbins both cut their teeth at the Queen’s - they performed in Aladdin in 1954, just a year after the Theatre opened. Joan played pretty Itti-Sing while Bernard delighted audiences as Bobbli of the Pekin Constabolorry!

He said: “I love playing the dame because it is lots of fun and as a dame you get to really build up a good relationship with the audience.”

Simon has played it three times at the Queen’s. Only two other people in the theatre’s history have played the part more – John Halstead nine times from 1979 and Chris MacDonnell six times from 1998.

Simon said: “As a dame you have got to appeal to the adults and the kids, some dames just put all their emphasis on the adults and they ignore the kids.

“But you have got to have sympathy for the dame and see her as a motherly figure so that you want to follow her on the journey.”

He added: “The panto is always lots of fun at the Queen’s. We have a loyal audience and we know them really well so we know what works.”

Jack And The Beanstalk, at the theatre from Saturday December 1 to January 12.

0 comments

Latest Romford News Stories

It’s been the news that 70 per cent of voters in the borough have been waiting for since that historic moment on June 23 when the UK voted to leave the European Union.

A charity is appealing for Easter egg donations to bring a little cheer to children in need this spring.

18:02

Mother’s Day is meant to be a celebratory occasion for the matriarchs in our families but it can be a sad day for those living on their own away from their families.

16:39

With a revamp, refreshing drinks and a tasty menu, the Liberty Bell has blossomed into a prime eatery, says reporter Ellena Cruse.

12:00

Pet lovers have a new port of call for when their animals are feeling paw-ly as a new veterinary surgery has opened following a £100,000 investment.

A headteacher says he is aiming to make students “life ready”, after the school was placed in special measures last month.

The moment that has been both contested and celebrated has finally arrived – Article 50, which officially starts the Brexit process, will be triggered today.

Yesterday, 16:35

Three men from Romford have been arrested on suspicion of murdering a 19-year-old in Redbridge during a raid in the early hours of this morning.

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Most read news

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

News from your area

Competitions

Having a brand new kitchen is something that lots of people want but can only dream of. Sadly keeping up to date and making our living spaces as nice as they can be is a costly and incredibly stressful business. Even a fresh coat of paint makes all the difference but isn’t easy or quick.

Who wouldn’t love the chance to go on a shopping spree. Imagine being able to walk into a shop and choose whatever your heart desires without having to worry about how much it costs.

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Romford Recorder
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now