Pantomime help and advice
Check out all our best top tips now to create a hit pantomime production!
You might say amateur theatre is just that - amateur. But just because you're doing amateur theatre, it doesn't mean the quality or impact is restricted. People don't just go to see local theatre to support their friends and family that are in it. They go to have a...
I look at what makes a successful organising committee for amateur theatre and how you can maintain this as members come and go.
It’s very easy to spend hours and hours pouring over stories, scripts, summaries and scene lists when looking for your next pantomime. I wanted to compile a list of 5 easy things that you can check to see if you have a decent pantomime script. Writers, directors and...
Inspired by adapting unusual titles, here’s everything I’ve learned from writing fairytales and novels as a pantomime adaptation.
Explaining a pantomime to anyone who hasn’t experienced one is always entertaining. Where do you start? With the crazy characters, of course!
This week I’ve been doing some more work on my Cinderella script, and I often use playlists of music to help with my writing process. Then I thought it might be useful to share this playlist with you.
So what does your pantomime audience love? I give you essential advice for writing or creating your next pantomime.
I take you through the most popular and unusual pantomime titles and how you should choose your next panto to perform or write.
My advice on what’s important to bear in mind when thinking about how to structure a pantomime script. A perfect first-time guide.
There may not have been as many pantomimes as usual this season, but there were some cracking shows and brilliant innovation in the shows that made it to the stage. One of my favourite things about pantomime is seeing how different producers use songs in interesting ways. Here’s my round up of the 5 best songs I heard in pantomimes this year.
The pantomime season this year, just wasn’t the same without the plethora of pantomime happening up and down the country. Fortunately, it’s still possible to get your panto fill with this year’s range of online pantomimes. Recorded live, and streamed online for your panto viewing pleasure. I’ve watched around 15 shows this year in person and online, and here’s my round up of some of the best that you can still watch (for a limited time only!)
Communicating with your membership is one of the hardest parts of running a cohesive amateur pantomime group. Communicating effectively with the general public is even harder! Having spent 10 years working on amateur theatre before moving to work professionally in the...
To an outsider, pantomime may seem bizarre, even misjudged. However, to those who grew up with the tradition, there are many governing rules, fun quirks and bizarre twists that work together to make the panto magic we all know and love.
Stage managers and the stage management team are a crucial part of the overall machine of making theatre. They cover a really wide field of skills and expertise that keep a production running both on and off stage.
Ever find yourself looking for the perfect number for a dame who can really sing? Or maybe you’re looking for that comic skit bound to make people laugh? Either way, you want the dame’s song to make a real impact in your pantomime. Here’s my list of songs which are always brilliant to achieve these outcomes.
‘He’s Behind You’ or ‘Ghost Gag’ is one of the most well known pantomime traditions. In this blog, I set out some ideas on how to make your ‘He’s Behind You’ scene the best it can be.
With a lot of this year’s pantomime season being cancelled , I’ve been thinking a lot about why we do pantomime, and what I’ll miss about seeing them this year.
As an amateur theatre group, press releases are a great way to get word out about your next production. You can write them and send them to local newspapers, bloggers and social media influencers to let them know that your production is happening, and why they should share the news about it.
With technology becoming ever more advanced, and software more widely available, it’s never been easier to create eye catching poster artwork for your pantomime. Here’s my advise on how to make sure your poster is tip-top and does your show justice.
Technical rehearsals are the part of the production where everything starts to come together. Costumes are on and under the lights, the set is up (hopefully) and the creative team are working harder than ever to finalise the production. But how can you plan for this time and ensure you’re using the time as best you can?
More Covid restrictions were announced for the UK today as the infection rate rises across the country. The Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden has confirmed an update to the prior guidance for safely producing amateur theatre productions.
The opening number sets the standard for the audience of the show they’re about to enjoy. You want it to grab your attention, to ‘wow’ and to be high energy. It’s often following some kind of prologue, so bringing the audience into the colourful world of the pantomime is essential. Here’s my list of songs which are perfect for for just that.
It’s always a juggling act to run rehearsals in a way which best serves all these groups of people and the production. However, here are some tips that can help you do just that.
Finding your cast members can feel very stressful. They are the foundations of the characters and if you get your casting wrong you can end up regretting it right up to the closing night of the production! So I’ve put together my tips to make casting your show as good as it can be.
When you first decide you’re going to direct or produce a show, and you’ve decided on the pantomime title, your next thought is probably going to be who else you want to work with. Here’s my list of all the roles on a creative team and what their responsibilities are towards the production.
Finding your next script to perform can feel like an endless yearly task. You order lots of perusals, perhaps include writers whose scripts you have performed before. Or perhaps you’re a first-time producer/director and you’re looking for a fresh script to whisk you away on exciting adventures. Here’s my list of key things to make sure are present in your next script.
Last week the government announced that performances would be able to resume at indoor venues, with a lot of caveats and guidelines to follow. Here’s my outline guide to how the rules work.
The pantomime baddie often gets some of the best lines in the show, but sometimes they can be left with rather dreary musical numbers. The baddie’s song is an opportunity to let rip with so many great numbers. Here’s my list of songs which are perfect for a whole range of nastiness to ensue.
Having worked with amateur group casts and professional pantomime actors, I’ve made a fair few mistakes in directing shows! Of course, that’s how we learn. I decided to put this blog together to try and help you stop making the same mistakes I did, and I’ve seen other directors doing a fair few of them, too. It’s a practical guide to being the best director you can.
With professional theatres still unsure whether the Christmas season can go ahead or not, amateur pantomime producers are in a similar position. I’ve been thinking about some ways we can ensure the season goes ahead safely for audiences, cast and crew.
The pantomime finale is the glittery ending to an epic adventure. Are you always looking for inspiration for songs to fill that coveted spot? Here’s some of the numbers on my ever-growing list.
You find yourself once again looking for a new production that’s perfect to be performed by children and young people. Whether you’re a teacher, or youth group leader the problem is the same: ‘Where will I find a script with plenty of scope for your young people to perform?’ That’s where I say: ‘Pantomime is a great option’ and here’s why:
3 things to remember if you’re setting out as director on your first show, here’s some things that are useful to bear in mind.
Writing a rehearsal schedule can be a very daunting task at first. There’s lots to consider and lots of people to please. Let alone, the amount of rehearsing to actually be done! Then of course you have to take into account the needs of the other members of the creative team, costume fittings, so on and so fourth. So here’s my top tips to writing the perfect schedule that keeps everybody happy.
Digital marketing is a must-have feature of your next marketing campaign. There are lots of opportunities to do free marketing for your pantomime online, but some are more effective than others. Here’s my low-down on the best places to advertise your pantomime online for free.
With so much time to stop and think at the moment, you might be planning to have a look at how your amateur theatre group works. One thing that comes up time and time again is selling tickets online. Is this something you’re already doing? Or is it something you’re looking into? Either way, hopefully this blog will help spell out some of the things you’ll need and some of the companies who can help you make the most of it.
One of the most exciting parts of performing in flexible venues like town halls, village halls, community arts spaces (like a lot of amateur theatre groups) is that you can change the type of stage that you are performing on. In this blog, I’m exploring some of the possible stage shapes you could create.
Here’s an update from Alex Jackson Pantomimes on the Covid-19 crisis and how that affects licenses this year.
At times like these, it’s sensible to be financially prudent when producing your annual pantomime. I thought it would be useful to share some thoughts on ways you can save money on your pantomime without cutting corners.
If you’re stuck at home in lockdown, here’s some links to some of the ways you can enjoy pantomime online!
The pantomime we know today draws its inspiration from many strands of popular entertainment through the ages. You’ve probably heard names of past stars such as Danny La Rue, Dan Leno and Stanley Baxter. In this blog I will give a potted history of the famous British art form.
Ever wondered what it takes to be a producer? Amateur producers have similar roles to professional ones. The role encompasses everything you might need to do to make the production happen. Here’s a few tips form my experiences producing amateur and professional theatre.
I’ve been lucky to work professionally in Pantomime, but my love for the art from started, as many people’s is did, with one of my first visits to the theatre. For some this annual outing would be the first or only trip to the theatre that year.
Lots of pantomimes take place up and down the country every year from the London Palladium to the smallest of village halls. Here’s a round up of the types of pantomime that take place.
If it’s your first time directing or producing a pantomime, it can be difficult to know where to start, so I’ve put together this first-time guide to making sure your production is one to remember!