Countdown to Shoreham panto

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Tom Beard is once again the writer of this year’s panto at Shoreham’s Ropetackle, this time taking his audiences into the world of Beauty and the Beast.

The show runs at the venue from December 14-31.

“Beauty and the Beast is an amazing love story,” Tom says.

“There is a lot of bad versus good and also a lot of room for some great comedy moments.

“There is also a live remaking of the film in 2017 so it really is in the public eye at the moment.”

You can expect topicality in other respects too.

“We like to reference everything that has gone on in the past year and hopefully everybody will have a good chuckle at what we do.

“ In last year’s pantos we had Donald Trump as one of the characters so we were well ahead of the game on that score!

“But you can’t do panto without a few bad jokes and some of the good ole’ traditional biz, can you! For a start, it’s what people expect and love and secondly, I am not one to pass up the chance of being very silly indeed!”

As for the cast: “I can tell you about them all in one fell swoop!

“We have chosen the finest actors and comedians that we know will deliver an amazing performance every time! We personally take extra special care and attention to ensure that our cast are perfect for their role.

“Competition was pretty fierce at the auditions and thankfully everybody that we offered a role took us up on it! Some of the cast we have worked with before and welcome back, but some new faces are always welcome! It’s great to welcome Rebecca from CBeebies into the fray as well. We have worked with her on other projects, and she is naturally very funny and watchable.”

The story should prove the perfect platform for all of them.

“Like the Disney version, this tale really appeals to every biddy, I mean, everybody.

“There are loads of various jokes and sketches that range from clever, slight, silly to the downright ridiculous and of course plenty of mess and slapstick comedy.

“There are also plenty of chances to sing along, shout, boo and join in the fun whatever your age. Age is just a number right? And my mental age is about six!”

For Tom writing the show is both fun and challenge.

“Every year I face the challenge of tying all my silly ideas together under one story!

“I get lots of thoughts for stories and subplots and comedy throughout the year and then comes the time when all the little bits of paper and emails that I send myself have to be collated into a two-hour show. It’s a bit like juggling spaghetti!”

Tickets for Beauty and the Beast at Shoreham’s Ropetackle are available on 01273 464440.

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