THE Tradition of the ‘family pantomime’ is in the words of Simply Minds ‘Alive and kicking’ in Taunton.

Box office sales alone of Jack and the Beanstalk at the Tacchi- Morris Arts Centre show there is no stopping the roller-coaster of ‘he’s behind you’ pulled along with ‘oh no he isn’t’ and ‘oh yes he is’.

This December, Reamba productions unveil this pantomime featuring a West End standard cast, a mix of wellknown songs and the promise of a festive treat for all.

The show will run at the Tacchi-Morris from December 9 to December 23, and all the cast are raring to go and eager to make it a season to be jolly for young and old.

Taking to the stage for his third pantomime is Sam Stay who plays Simple Simon.

Sam is local lad who comes from Crewkerne and prior to becoming a professional he was a student at THE SPACE in Taunton.

Talking about his character, Sam said: “The best way to play it is truthful. You need to play it as if it is happening to you at the time.

"The kids love the silly stuff and secretly the adults love the silly stuff as well.

"You have to get the comical timing just right even the small quips.

Somerset County Gazette:

“This comes from rehearsals and you can get away with a lot if you let the audience in on the joke.

"What helps is being able to break the fourth wall and panto gives you that freedom.

“Pantomime is a tradition and it is a great night out for everyone.”

Taking on the role of Fairy Sunflower is Georgina Hendry, a professional vocalist and actress.

This is Georgina’s second acting role in a panto but has been in love with panto since she was a young girl and saw her first panto Cinderella.

Georgina said: “When I saw my first panto I wanted to be in one.

For me it was fun and I wanted to enjoy this fun as an adult.”

Somerset County Gazette:

Georgina explained Fairy Sunflower, is everyone’s guardian and she is the one who turns the cooking beans into magic beans, so Jack can rescue the princess and defeat the giant.

She added: “She is mischievous but wants to be everyone’s friend.

“What I like about this role compared to last years role (Flesh Creep) is I can be more myself.”

Set to tread the boards in the her second pantomime is Clare McCreadie from Scotland who fills the role of The Princess.

Last year, she was in Aladdin, this year Jack and the Beanstalk and the 3rd Year MT student at Performance, Preparation Academy (PPA) in Guildford.

Somerset County Gazette:

She said: “I enjoy pantomime as I see it as an education from which I can learn and take back to drama school. It is also good for the children to enjoy and it is something to make everyone happy.

“The pantomime is all about bringing people together have having a good time with lots of laughter.”

In the evil corner is the Villain or Villainess, the one and only Malevolence as played by Emily Jane Brooks.

She admitted there is a ‘certain buzz’ playing evil and for all of you hoping for a ‘happy ending’, Malevolence said she could not guarantee one and you should see what happens as evil may prevail.

Talking about the panto, Emily said: “It is going against my nature to be evil but I will instil terror. This role is fun to play but you need a certain edge to have wicked vibes.”

Giving her advice for budding actors/actresses, Emily said: “I would say there is a lot of escapism and you never stop learning. As an actress you are constantly learning new methods and improving.

"If you want to be an actor or an actress you need to have perseverance, learn as much as you can and you should not have a time scale for giving up (if it gets too tough), as you either love what you do or you don’t.

"You need to take every job you can and learn from each experience.

"If you are serious about the business you need to get as many strings to your bow as you can.”

It is said ‘there is nothing like a Dame’ and there is nothing like a pantomime Dame.

The role of Dame Trott in Jack and the Beanstalk has gone to Dave Lynn, who brings a wealth of experience to the role having appeared in Coronation Street, EastEnders, Silent Witness and Doctors.

Somerset County Gazette:

Last year was his first pantomime as a Dame and he said he had learnt a lot for the experience.

Dave said: “The Dame is the heart of the show. She is the mother for the cast and for the children watching the show.

They know it is a man in a dress but once they get over that they shout out for the Dame or Mum.

“The kids get carried away with the story as it is huge fun and the best time of the year.

"I learnt a lot playing the role of Widow Twanky last year and learnt how to engage and interact with the kids.”

How has the panto going?

According to directo Matt Summer, who said: “They have loved it, everything about it.

Somerset County Gazette:

“You have got to have all the ingredients for the kids.

“This is a professional show and the set is something you would normally see in Bristol or Birmingham.

“I do not think Taunton has had a professional panto and we want people to know there is one at the Tacchi-Morris this Christmas.”

Tickets for Jack and the Beanstalk cost £14 / £13 Concs./ £12 Under 16’s Family Ticket: £46 Family of Four (2 adults 2 children)

To book tickets call 01823 414141.

READ our review of Jack and the Beanstalk here: