ARTS+ENTERTAINMENT A Q&A WITH THE STARS OF ALADDIN AT THE ORCHARD THEATRE We can’t wait to welcome you to Dartford for our panto this year, but I understand it’s not your first! How many pantomimes have you done now? What do you think is so important about pantomimes? They happen every year, but why should people and families keep coming back? David Robbins: (counts on hands) 18, I think... Ricky K: I’ve done 10. I took a break for a bit. DR: It’s that thing of going to the theatre, keeping it alive and keeping theatre going. Panto, yes, or even a kid’s show; whatever it is, take your kids to the theatre. RK: Panto is one of the first things you see and it’s often your first introduction to the theatre… DR: …and you go with your family, so a lot of the kids, especially the little ones, aren’t as scared because they are with their family – they can sit there and enjoy it and hopefully then keep coming back. RK: It really is the magic of panto! What’s your favourite character to play in a pantomime? RK: My ultimate favourite would be Buttons. I think his character conveys all the elements of panto – the pathos, the comedy, the singing, the story. I’m Wishee Washee this year and I’ve never done this role before, so I’m really excited to do it. DR: Well, I played an ugly sister for 13 years and loved it. I think it’s something about being the dame, but also the baddie. I do love playing dames – they are very different and I enjoy them as much as each other. I suppose it’s because I’ve been doing it for so long! 42 What are you going to bring to the show? RK: My good looks and six pack. DR: Fabulous frocks! RK: A good laugh on stage. Comedy is king in pantomime and I’m very excited to do the scenes with Marti and everyone in the cast. It’s a new area for me too – I’m a Yorkshireman who lives in Newcastle and I don’t do much in the south, so it will be interesting to bring a northerner into things. Everyone will be getting the google translate out! Why should people come to The Orchard Theatre’s panto over any others? DR: I don’t know if I can say, it might give it away! I can guarantee it’s going to be amazing, but I can’t tell you all of the things that will happen... RK: Bigger, brighter, better…you really don’t want to miss this! After that teaser, how can you miss it? Tickets for Aladdin starring Marti Pellow alongside Ricky K and David Robbins and opening at The Orchard Theatre on Saturday 8th December are on sale now. Please visit www.orchardtheatre.co.uk, or call the ticket office on 01322 220000.