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Pantomime attracts record-breaking audience numbers

Published January 12, 2023 9.19am

A County Durham theatre has had a successful festive season as its pantomime became the venue's bestselling Christmas production.

Aladdin Consett Empire

Tommy Cannon in Aladdin

A record-breaking 14,000 people went to see Consett Empire's pantomime of Aladdin, which ran 33 performances over the festive period from Thursday 1 to Saturday 31 December.

Star cast

Written, starred, and directed by Leah Bell, in her 11th show at our venue, Aladdin welcomed comedy legend Tommy Cannon who starred as The Emperor Tommassisso Cannonisso.

Tommy's appearance marked his 36th pantomime and first since his comic partner Bobby Ball sadly died.

Leah and Tommy were joined on stage by a full cast of performers who delivered a show full of magic, dazzling costumes and hit songs in a modern twist to the traditional story.

Accessible theatre

In supporting our aim to make theatre accessible for all audiences, the venue also provided relaxed and British Sign Language (BSL) performances.

Cllr Elizabeth Scott, our Cabinet member for economy and partnerships, said: "We are absolutely delighted with the record-breaking success we have had with this year's production of Aladdin. We hope everyone who attended the show had a fantastic time and got into the festive spirit.

"We are committed to delivering a range of exciting cultural opportunities as part of our ambitions for Durham as the culture county, and our pantomimes are a key part of our Christmas programme. Our staff and cast did a superb job in making this year's pantomime truly spectacular, and we are already looking forward to next year's production."

Jack and the Beanstalk

Following the success of Aladdin, Leah Bell will return to write, direct and star in next year's giant pantomime, Jack and the Beanstalk.

Running from Friday 1 to Sunday 31 December 2023, with relaxed and BSL performances on Thursday 28 December at 11am and 3pm respectively, tickets for Jack and the Beanstalk are on sale now.

Tickets priced from £10 can be purchased online, or by calling the Consett Empire Theatre and Cinema Box Office on 03000 262 400.

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