You can read part of his interview below, where he talks about his experience here at Anvil Arts.
Over Christmas 2021, you were playing Louis la Plonk in Beauty & The Beast. How did the run go?
We had such a great run, and it was brilliant playing Louis la Plonk. It was an award-winning script written by Jon Monie, so the foundations were already there for a great show. I love physical comedy and had immense fun adding that layer to the character.
How was it returning to live theatre during the pandemic?
It definitely added another level of stress to the process. We had very strict COVID regulations about testing and mask wearing around the building. I also directed the show, so there was yet another level of anxiety about cast and crew going down with COVID. Normally, once we are through the rehearsal and tech period, I leave my director hat at the door and just enjoy the run with my fellow actors, but this time, I was constantly rehearsing understudies and then understudies for the understudies in an effort to make sure the show would always go on. Happily, we did manage to complete 100% of our scheduled shows.
What do you enjoy most about pantomime season and working at The Anvil?
Firstly, I feel very lucky to have the opportunity to return to The Anvil every year as it's a theatre that really invests in its pantomime. The team there, along with UK Productions, have very high standards. Each year as director, I'm involved in many meetings with the producers and co-creatives, which centre on delivering the best and most magical experience we can achieve. There is nothing I love more than working on a new comedy routine or big show-stopping finale and seeing it come to life in front of an audience knowing we have worked so hard to get that moment absolutely perfect over the last few months.
Having directed many pantomimes over the years, how do you find the experience of directing these types of shows?
I love directing for so many reasons. Lifting a story from the page and breathing life into each scene and moment is a joy for me. I agree with the saying “The Devil is in the detail”. However, it should never just be about what the director wants. Rehearsals should be a collaborative process. When you have the right cast, sometimes the best thing to do is just to sit back and let the ideas happen.
Cinderella runs at The Anvil 9 Dec – 2 Jan.
Book your tickets online, or call the box office on 01256 844244 to secure your seat!