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Today's Shows

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Drama

Within This Landscape

Within This Landscape

Sat 23 Aug - Mon 25 Aug

1984

1984

Tue 16 Sep - Sat 20 Sep

Sherlock Holmes: A Working Hypothesis

Sherlock Holmes: A Working Hypothesis

Mon 11 Aug - Sun 21 Sep

Regeneration

Regeneration

Tue 23 Sep - Sat 27 Sep

Arthur Author

Arthur Author

Mon 13 Oct

Betrayal

Betrayal

Fri 03 Oct - Sat 18 Oct

Antigone

Antigone

Tue 21 Oct - Sat 25 Oct

The Kite Runner

The Kite Runner

Mon 27 Oct - Sat 01 Nov

Helver's Night

Helver's Night

Thu 30 Oct - Sat 08 Nov

Hanging Hooke

Hanging Hooke

Sat 15 Nov

The Woman In Black

The Woman In Black

Mon 17 Nov - Sat 22 Nov

She Stoops to Conquer

She Stoops to Conquer

Tue 25 Nov - Sat 29 Nov

Mr Puntila And His Man Matti

Mr Puntila And His Man Matti

Thu 27 Nov - Sat 29 Nov

The Circle Of Chalk

The Circle Of Chalk

Thu 27 Nov - Sat 29 Nov

A View From The Bridge

A View From The Bridge

Fri 13 Feb - Sat 28 Feb

Family

The Wind In The Willows

The Wind In The Willows

Thu 31 Jul - Sat 30 Aug

Sing and Sign Stage 1 (6-18 Months)

Sing and Sign Stage 1 (6-18 Months)

Mon 22 Sep - Mon 01 Dec

Sing And Sign Stage 2 (1 - 2½ Years)

Sing And Sign Stage 2 (1 - 2½ Years)

Mon 22 Sep - Mon 01 Dec

Singamajigs

Singamajigs

Tue 23 Sep - Tue 02 Dec

Story Makers

Story Makers

Wed 17 Sep - Wed 03 Dec

Puss In Boots

Puss In Boots

Wed 10 Dec - Sat 03 Jan

Old Mother Goose

Old Mother Goose

Thu 11 Dec - Sat 31 Jan

Comedy

The Importance Of Being Earnest

The Importance Of Being Earnest

Fri 11 Jul - Sun 17 Aug

Noel James

Noel James

Thu 13 Nov

Dance

Summer Big Band

Summer Big Band

Sat 30 Aug

Perform Rises

Perform Rises

Sat 04 Oct

Phoenix Dance Theatre

Phoenix Dance Theatre

Wed 12 Nov - Thu 13 Nov

Burns Night Ceilidh

Burns Night Ceilidh

Sat 24 Jan

Pantomime

Old Mother Goose

Old Mother Goose

Thu 11 Dec - Sat 31 Jan

Contemporary Drama

Arthur Author

Arthur Author

Mon 13 Oct

Antigone

Antigone

Tue 21 Oct - Sat 25 Oct

The Restoration of Nell Gwyn

The Restoration of Nell Gwyn

Thu 09 Oct - Sat 25 Oct

Cell

Cell

Mon 10 Nov

Jonny Got His Gun

Jonny Got His Gun

Tue 11 Nov

Birthday Suit Party

Birthday Suit Party

Wed 12 Nov

Helen

Helen

Fri 14 Nov

More Tales from Kafka

More Tales from Kafka

Tue 18 Nov - Thu 20 Nov

Pride and Prejudice

Pride and Prejudice

Fri 21 Nov - Sat 22 Nov

General

Community Amateur

The Three Musketeers

The Three Musketeers

Wed 23 Jul - Sun 10 Aug

Iolanthe

Iolanthe

Thu 18 Sep - Sat 20 Sep

The Pirates Of Penzance

The Pirates Of Penzance

Wed 05 Nov - Sat 08 Nov

Mr Puntila And His Man Matti

Mr Puntila And His Man Matti

Thu 27 Nov - Sat 29 Nov

The Circle Of Chalk

The Circle Of Chalk

Thu 27 Nov - Sat 29 Nov

Rehearsed Reading

Music

Musicals

Ghost The Musical

Ghost The Musical

Fri 08 Aug - Sat 16 Aug

Opera

Childrens

Play In A Week - 8-11s

Play In A Week - 8-11s

Mon 11 Aug - Sat 16 Aug

The Wind In The Willows

The Wind In The Willows

Thu 31 Jul - Sat 30 Aug

The Princess and the Pea

The Princess and the Pea

Thu 18 Sep - Sat 04 Oct

Sing and Sign Stage 1 (6-18 Months)

Sing and Sign Stage 1 (6-18 Months)

Mon 22 Sep - Mon 01 Dec

Sing And Sign Stage 2 (1 - 2½ Years)

Sing And Sign Stage 2 (1 - 2½ Years)

Mon 22 Sep - Mon 01 Dec

Singamajigs

Singamajigs

Tue 23 Sep - Tue 02 Dec

Story Makers

Story Makers

Wed 17 Sep - Wed 03 Dec

Physical Theatre

Helen

Helen

Fri 14 Nov

Workshop

Play In A Week - 8-11s

Play In A Week - 8-11s

Mon 11 Aug - Sat 16 Aug

Sing and Sign Stage 1 (6-18 Months)

Sing and Sign Stage 1 (6-18 Months)

Mon 22 Sep - Mon 01 Dec

Sing And Sign Stage 2 (1 - 2½ Years)

Sing And Sign Stage 2 (1 - 2½ Years)

Mon 22 Sep - Mon 01 Dec

Singamajigs

Singamajigs

Tue 23 Sep - Tue 02 Dec

Story Makers

Story Makers

Wed 17 Sep - Wed 03 Dec

A Great Dame

Mon 03 Dec 2012

A Great Dame

When we meet Berwick, he's still in the middle of writing this year's script - the 31st script he's written for aYork panto. "Over the years the audience here have dictated to all of us what's acceptable and what's not, what they find funny and what they don't, and staying in the same place makes all the difference. I go on there and say 'it's the same rubbish as last year, why don't you spend your money on something else?'"

The art of pantomime

Of course, it isn't the same rubbish every year - Berwick writes each panto fresh, so that the audience can enjoy new jokes. He's a great believer in making the panto have a local feel, too. "Good oldYorkshirefolk aren't going to spend their money unless they're entertained, so the panto has to be different," he says. "I can't tell you why they come en mass - people who come to the panto know who I am, and the panto has a national reputation, but I'm not a star name. We fill this theatre purely on the art of pantomime - it's got all the ingredients of what people used to give them in the old days. I don't mean the 1960s shows that nearly killed pantomime with all the stars of yesterday whose career was on the decline, but the pantos of the 1900s that they used to do atDrury Lane."

Berwick says that's what they try to recreate - except atDrury Laneit wouldn't be odd to see 12 elephants cross the stage. "I'm sorry but we can't afford that!" Berwick laughs, "but we can give the audience a dog on a stick or something! You've got to use your imagination. Yes, the script can be complicated, but the art is to tell a joke so that a child in the audience doesn't turn to mum or dad and say 'what does that mean?' or if there's something that they really won't understand, that the next gag is visual. I know it's a cliché, but no-one is bored. If you're bored in one of our pantomimes you don't have a sense of humour."

Anarchy in the UK

So what's this year's panto about? "It's the same as last year but with a different title," Berwick jokes. "Not really, it's Robin Hood mixed with Babes in the Woods. The story revolves about protecting these two children from the evil Sherriff. The dame, Hattie Hood, has two sons - one is Robin, who she thinks is an accountant who's doing really well for himself as he has his own forest, and the other is an out of work pole dancer on benefits. It's a bit different from what you'd expect. It's a bit anarchic."

Berwick adds that Robin Hood is the only English pantomime story, which is one of the reasons why he was attracted to it. "A few years ago we premiered Dick Turpin - I was baffled as to why no-one had done it before, as he died here and he's buried up the road!" adds Berwick. "You've always got to think, right, we've got a national reputation, but essentially we're a little local pantomime group who think they're the Palladium, and you have to keep it local too. Pantomime is the last bastion of local community theatre, and you've got to treat it like that. We have visitors from all over the world, and the country, and it is accessible to all, but I'll go to my grave saying it's a little local pantomime."

Read the article on the Your Local Link website.

 

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