Hartlepool panto cast gets ready to sparkle some magic on opening night

Audiences set to take in Hartlepool’s first pantomime production in years are set for a festive treat, according to the show’s cast.

Aladdin opens to the public this Friday evening at the Town Hall Theatre with thousands expected to see the production during its two-week run.

Paul Lavers (Sultan Mustaffa-Biscuit) and Charlotte Maclachlan (Jasmine).

Paul Lavers (Sultan Mustaffa-Biscuit) and Charlotte Maclachlan (Jasmine).

Starring former Coronation Street favourite Terence Maynard as the evil Abanazar and Denis Grindel as Aladdin, the cast and crew are currently taking part in dress rehearsals before opening night.

Terence, who played Tony Stewart before leaving the cobbles of Wetherfield last year, told the Mail: “It’s been absolutely fabulous working with the cast and crew.

“Hartlepool is lovely and the people I’ve met here are really friendly too.

“We’ve got a very knowledgeable director who is doing both the choreography and directing so it’s all gone well.

“The songs are terrific too and everyone who comes to see the show should know them so they can get involved.”

Legendary panto dame Paul Tate stars as Widow Twankey in the production and has also penned the script.

“I think it’s a fun telling of the story but with a real panto feel to it,” he said.

“There are plenty of jokes for the adults, not just the kids, and some local references to the area too which I think people will find funny.

“I’ve written dozens of pantomime scripts because I’ve loved it ever since I saw Little and Large perform in one when I was four-years-old.

“For some children this will be the first time that they’ve seen a show like this and we hope they all enjoy it.

“The cast are getting on great and hopefully that shows in the production.”

Charlotte Maclachlan plays the show’s heroine Jasmine and says she’s enjoying being in new surroundings.

“The scale of the production is great considering that this theatre is such a small venue.

“Terence is a brilliant baddy and we’ve all had such a great time rehearsing and getting to know each other.

“I just hope now that the people of Hartlepool enjoy it as much as we have putting it on.”

Aladdin runs at the Town Hall Theatre, in Raby Road, from this Friday until Wednesday, December 28 (apart from on Christmas Day).

Tickets are priced at £14 for adults and £12 for children, with a family ticket for two adults and two children costing £47.