Pantomime help and advice

Check out all our best top tips now to create a hit pantomime production!

How to create an effective production committee

Most amateur theatre productions are organised by a team of dedicated committee members who keep things running, choose directors, choreographers, musical directors and fund raise tirelessly for the group. One of the things being experienced recently is that a...

How to save money on printing marketing materials

As with all amateur theatre groups, survival is down to how well a production sells. Promotional materials are key to the success of pulling in an audience so I’m going to feature several different types of promotional materials, how you can save money on them, and...

What are production meetings and why are they useful?

In all productions big and small there’s a variety of aspects that need to be considered well in advance of the show. These are often integral to the performance but can easily get left out and forgotten about then rushed at the last minute. This blog is all about...

How to get your show sponsorship

Fundraising is becoming increasingly harder and ticket sales still more difficult to cover costs of a production let alone put some money away for a rainy day. This blog is designed to help you attract sponsorship effectively from local businesses and organisations to...

Writing Once Upon a Time in Pantoland

In early Summer 2021, a good friend of mine asked if I’d be interested in writing a bespoke script for their pantomime return following the lifting of Covid 19 restrictions, of course I jumped at the chance.

3 Secrets to Amateur Theatre Success

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...

5 Things to Check When Choosing a Pantomime Script

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...

Cinderella Pantomime Song Suggestions

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.

5 Brilliant Pantomime Songs From the 2020/21 Season

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 Best Pantomimes Online January 2021

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!)

Why Your Pantomime Group Should Be on Social Media

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...

A Beginner’s Guide to British Pantomime Traditions

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.

What are the Different Stage Management Roles?

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.

The Best Pantomime Dame Songs

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.

How to Direct: He’s Behind You Scene

‘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.

Why is Pantomime Important?

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.

The Best Way to Write Your Next Press Release

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.

5 Common Errors You’re Making On Your Pantomime Poster

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.

How to Make Your Technical Rehearsals Brilliant

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?

Amateur Theatre To Be Included in ‘The Rule of Six’

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 Best Pantomime Opening Numbers

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.

5 Things That Will Make Your Auditions Better

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.

What are all the different roles in a creative team?

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.

5 Things to Help You Choose Your Next Pantomime Script

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.

The Best Pantomime Baddie Songs

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.

3 Common Mistakes Directors Make And How to Avoid Them

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.

5 Ways to Make Pantomimes Happen Post-Covid

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 Best Pantomime Finale Songs

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.

3 Reasons your School or Youth Group Should put on a Pantomime

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:

The Secret to Writing the Perfect Rehearsal Schedule

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.

5 Easy Ways to Advertise Your Pantomime Online For Free

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.

How should my village pantomime sell tickets online?

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.

5 Types of Theatre Stage

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.

Covid-19 Update

Here’s an update from Alex Jackson Pantomimes on the Covid-19 crisis and how that affects licenses this year.

How to save money on producing a pantomime

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.

Pantomime in Lockdown

If you’re stuck at home in lockdown, here’s some links to some of the ways you can enjoy pantomime online!

A Potted History of Pantomime

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.

5 Top Tips for Amateur Pantomime Producers

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.

Why I Love Pantomimes

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.

Types of Pantomime

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.

5 Easy Steps to put on the Perfect Pantomime

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!