The rags to riches story of Dick Whittington and his loyal friend Tommy the Cat is a panto extravaganza that’s purrfect for the whole family. Dick is off to London to seek his fortune…
…but he needs your help!
Come cheer and sing along for our hero and his lovable sidekick, as they travel to exciting lands and magical worlds. Will our hero defeat the evil King Rat? Will he win the hand of the beautiful Alice? And will he make his fortune and become Lord Mayor of London?
With the help of everyone’s favourites, Dame Sarah the Cook, and Idle Jack, together with a host of exciting characters, and a sprinkling of fairy dust from The Spirit of the Bells, everything is set to be alright in the end!
Everything you have come to expect from traditional family pantomime at The Altrincham Garrick Playhouse.
Photos by Vishal Sharma
- Spirit of the Bells – Helen Lawrence
- King Rat – Mike Shaw
- Captain Cockles – Ewan Henderson
- Mr Mussels – Howard Yaffe
- Alderman Fitzwarren – Ivor Farley
- Alice Fitzwarren – Claire Louise Garrett
- Dick Whittington – Meg Royle
- Tommy the Cat – Daisy Brocklehurst
- Sarah the Cook – Phil Edwards
- Idle Jack – Peter Brassington
- The Sultana of Morocco – Helen Lawrence
- Dancers / Chorus of Citizens / Spirits / Rats / Nubians etc.
- Ella Murphy, Rose Morris, Amelia Fay, Georgia Geupel, India Connor-Blow, Sophia Simpson, Sophie Lefton, Lydia Horsefield, Lily Odwyer, Emilia Law, Florence Gray, Lauren Cooke
Review by Rick Bowen for STAGESTRUCK
THE foyer was buzzing with excitement before we went in to watch this fun filled family pantomime, the mood heightened by a small army of enthusiastic children, eager to enjoy their festive treat. And yes, both they and the big kids weren’t disappointed, as this perfectly paced production, with its perfect comedy timing, left everyone feeling well and truly entertained. That’s praise indeed from yours truly, who, when it comes to pantos, is usually less than enthusiastic. For me, this is the best panto I’ve seen at this theatre, with everything falling perfectly into place. Who can resist the tale of an underdog, as our hero Dick Whittington (a suitably likeable Meg Royle) travelling a long and difficult road determined to achieve his dreams and get his girl. This theatre has a youth group. However, it must have been a great learning curve, particularly for the younger actors, to work with Phil Edwards, who plays the show’s larger than life Dame, Sarah the Cook. A seasoned panto performer, Phil really makes the role his own, winning everybody over and swanning around the stage in frocks as loud as the children’s boos, hisses and singing. He’s ably assisted by his hapless and hopeless son Idle Jack, a Christmas present of a role for Peter Brassington. If I have a minor quibble I thought the cast were more comfortable acting than they were singing, but that in no way diminishes the enjoyment of the audience who were very appreciative when I saw the show. Writer/director Alan Clements shows its perfectly possible to wear with distinction “two hats,” which should be paper and coloured at this time of year. If you want to escape the repeats on Christmas TV or just fancy a good night out, Dick Whittington and his Wonderful Cat is for you. Star rating ★★★★
Review by Julia Taylor for SALE AND ALTRINCHAM MESSENGER
FROM the opening scene featuring the citizens of London, the Garrick’s Panto warms the hearts of young and old. There are no smutty jokes though it’s full of fun as it tells the tale of Dick Whittington and his wonderful Cat as he seeks his fortune in London. The script is written by Alan Clements who also directs it. He’s a master of the art of panto and the cast soon has the kids at the matinee performance shouting ‘He’s Behind You.’ They love every minute and shout their heads off every time a gorilla appears. Dick Whittington is played by a thigh slapping Meg Royle with a gorgeous voice. Her girlfriend, Alice, (Clare Louise Garrett) sings equally well and their duet sends shivers down your spine. No microphones needed here! Phil Edwards returns as the Dame singling out someone called Nigel sitting on the front row for special taunting. Nigel is a great sport. Phil and Peter Brassington’s Idol Jack keep the kids amused. Mike Shaw, who plays the baddy, King Rat, gets his just deserts at the end from Daisy Brocklehurst’s clever cat and, throughout, from the booing, jeering kids. In contrast, the scene representing fish and sea creatures apparently swimming across the stage is haunting. The dancing, too, is second to none. From the hornpipe to gentle ballet movements, they are a joy to watch. Mike Shaw and his team of helpers must be congratulated on the colourful costumes.
This is panto at its best. Star rating ★★★★
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