Eastbourne’s famous pantomime is always a family affair in Eastbourne – and that even extends to the staff and cast at the Devonshire Park Theatre who refer to themselves as Pantomime family during the show’s run at the Grade II listed playhouse.
Front of House manager Natalie Pennington explains: “During pantomime you actually see more of your work colleagues than you do some of your family. We often work very long shifts and whilst it is very tiring it is such a special time to be a part of the theatre that everyone feels like they are actually working with friends and family, so we all joke that we are all part of the Pantomime Family during the run!’
The undisputed matriarch figure at the top of the pantomime family tree has to be Eastbourne’s favourite Dame Martyn Knight, who returns to the Devonshire Park for his 13th panto.
In addition to his part on stage Martyn also takes on the role of friend, chef (He often brings in homemade treats and dinners for the cast and crew) and even some-time agony aunt for those cast members who are missing home.
This kindness extends to him opening his ‘digs’ to cast members on Christmas day, as due to the performance schedules not all cast are able to make it home for Christmas.
Martyn cooks and invites those who would otherwise be on their own to come to spend the actual day with him – before they have to don the wigs and panstick again the next day for the sold out Boxing Day shows!
Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs stars Denise Black (Emmerdale), the picture perfect Snow White Hannah Boyce, gorgeous Tom Senior as Prince and of course favourites Tucker and Martyn Knight.
From the creative team behind Peter Pan, once again expect a show jam-packed with of all the essential pantomime ingredients; top-class live music, a fabulous cast, dazzling choreography, stunning costumes and plenty of groan-worthy gags! Tickets are selling fast. The show opens on 9 December and runs until 15 January at the Sussex home of pantomime Devonshire Park Theatre, Eastbourne. To book or for more information call the box office on 01323 412000