Thursday, 11 September 2014

A Panto in a Day Round-up 2014. The Year of a Pantomime Company

Well we have had a very busy year. From collaborating with Samsung and Channel 5’s Milkshake we’re happy to be getting back to pantomime.

After the success of Cinderella last year we started to take the year easy. But came across a very good contact based in Drayton Manor theme park and have since been working there most weekends. 

However, we are now gearing up to our fifth year and this years show is. [Drum roll and Fanfare to be played…NOW] The Wizard of Oz! And seeing as this is now our fifth show that means next year we will be on rotation and Dick Whittington will make a return. 
Every year we have our sets hand painted, and I am sure you can remember, last year we upscaled all the set. Making it larger and sturdier….well, that all needs to change, again! And yes, there is an element of bitterness there. However, we have all agreed here that it’s for the best. It’s the way forward in making Panto in a Day the largest touring theatre company in the country! (Seems like the first time we have thrown that gauntlet down). Well, we stand firmly by it. And from strength to strength up is the only way. Our set designer moved from Milkshake to the BBC and unfortunately we had to say goodbye to her…leaving party stories to follow. 
So, we have been in contact with the same guy that designed our logo and given him the big job of designing everything digitally. Sure, saying ‘designing everything digitally’ sounds pretty high spec. It means, he’ll sketch out our sets and then draw them on some wizardry computer program. Then once we own those images we can do what we want with them. i.e. send them to the printers. We’ll have our lovely designs printed on large canvas’s and hung around the school using frames that come with a ten year guarantee. [Sounds like a challenge for us to outlive them to me]…and we will. 
Once he’s done The Wizard of Oz he’ll then complete; Dick Whittington, Aladdin, Jack and the Beanstalk, Cinderella and a secret one that we’re in talks with. Fortunately the transaction has been signed off as it’s only now he’s realising the huge amount of work involved! 
So that’s the first big news regarding the company. A massive set change. 
Ready for the second one? I can hear you all gasping for air in anticipation. We’re adding yet another team. I know, worth turning purple for! We will now have four teams touring the country and performing to yet thousands more children. From Lands End to John o Groats. [DISCLAIMER] We cannot guarantee we have shows in Lands End…nor can we John o Groats, but you get the idea. 
And the best part about our extra team? Mark, our CEO is dusting off the plimsols and warming up the jazz hands. He is going to be in one of the teams. From the years of 2010 when he gave himself the role of Dick in Dick Whittington he has been purely office based. Working on the logistics and taking bookings. From what he’s been saying he is very excited about taking to the boards again. We’re under the impression he is relating it to when Rocky came out of retirement in Rocky 3 beating Mr T and winning the World title, but that’s just our take on it. 

We have the wonderful Laura Darrell back on board directing teams and manning the phones. She has again spent most of the year in the Lake District performing within the depths of hills, lakes and trees. 
We had our first booking before we even knew which show we were performing back in March and have even got one booked for Christmas Eve! We’re currently trying to crack a whole new market with our extra team and hope that pays off. So here we are, just about to send our emails and letters out to everyone and let the bookings roll in!
Maybe this years first entry to the blog was a ‘trumpet blowing’ session, but it’s always good to start on a positive. We hope you have had a good year and stay tuned for more!

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