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Colchester’s Cinderella spreads panto magic online this Christmas

PUBLISHED: 18:22 05 November 2020

Nerine Skinner and ensemble in Cinderella, Colchester Mercury's panto which is being live streamed in December Photo: Pamela Raith

Nerine Skinner and ensemble in Cinderella, Colchester Mercury's panto which is being live streamed in December Photo: Pamela Raith

Pamela Raith

The new building at Colchester’s Mercury Theatre may still not be open - but Cinderella will still go to the ball, thanks to magical modern technology.

Having a splashing good time, Dale Superville and Antony Stuart-Hicks in Cinderella, the Colchester Mercury's pantomime which is being live streamed in December Photo: Pamela RaithHaving a splashing good time, Dale Superville and Antony Stuart-Hicks in Cinderella, the Colchester Mercury's pantomime which is being live streamed in December Photo: Pamela Raith

Colchester’s Mercury Theatre has announced that it will be streaming its record-breaking pantomime Cinderella for audiences to enjoy at home this Christmas, while providing a valuable lifeline for the show’s cast and crew.

Filmed over Christmas 2019 in front of a family audience of more than 800 people, the Mercury promises that this fun-filled show, that smashed all previous Mercury box office records, has just what it takes to put a smile on everyone’s face this December.

The pantomime, Cinderella - written by Andrew Pollard and directed by Mercury creative director Ryan McBryde - is the ultimate rags-to-riches tale, featuring a talented line up including the 2020 Pantomime Award winning ugly sisters, and Colchester panto favourites, Antony Stuart-Hicks and Dale Superville, alongside spritely Fairy Godmother Deborah Tracey.

All of the proceeds from the ticket sales to view Cinderella online will be split equally between the theatre and all of the freelancers whose work is visible on the stage, and those who worked behind the scenes, to bring this magical show to life.

Nerine Skinner and Jack Reitman in the Colchester Mercury's Cinderella which is being live streamed in December Photo: Pamela RaithNerine Skinner and Jack Reitman in the Colchester Mercury's Cinderella which is being live streamed in December Photo: Pamela Raith

Over 40 individuals, including actors, musicians, stage management, dressers and backstage crew will share 50% of the income from the streaming.

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Tracey Childs, Executive Producer at the Mercury Theatre said: “We are delighted that we can offer a small lifeline to the incredibly talented freelance team of cast, crew and creatives who worked tirelessly to create this magical production.

“Freelancers are vital to the theatre industry and make up about 70% of creating our productions. Particularly when we work together for a length of time on a show like Cinderella, these artists and experts become part of the Mercury family and are essential to our lifeblood and cultural future.

“We are thankful that our organisation is enriched by our collaborations with the freelance community. Without freelancers Cinderella would be a vastly different show and we want to be able to welcome these talents and skillsets back to our theatre in the future. We are incredibly grateful to our audiences for supporting us and we hope that this performance by our fabulous cast and crew will add a touch of magic to everyone’s Christmas.”

Passes to view the pantomime in December are now on sale and households can access Cinderella anytime between the December 19 and the January 1 2021 inclusive. Passes to watch the production are also on sale to schools, for classes to tune-in from the December 1-18, 2020.

The Mercury is also gifting hospitals and care homes across Essex opportunities to access the performance for free in December and care homes further afield can purchase a pass to access the show for their residents too.

Steve Mannix, Executive Director at the Mercury Theatre said: “Now that our redevelopment project is nearly completed, it is incredibly exciting, but also a worrying time for us. Pantomime is crucial to our long-term financial security and Cinderella being streamed is going to offer our audiences a wonderful chance to experience all the sparkle of a classic Mercury pantomime, from the comfort of home with their loved ones, while supporting the theatre and helping us return in our fantastic refurbished theatre in the New Year.”

Family streaming is available between Saturday, December 19 and Friday, January 1. Tickets are £6 per family pass. For booking information, visit the Mercury website.


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