A popular fairy-tale will inspire this year’s Consett pantomime.

The Consett Empire Theatre and Cinema will be hosting a production of Beauty and the Beast. Tickets are now on sale, with the panto set to entertain audiences of all ages throughout December.

The Empire is again working with north-east actress and producer Leah Bell. In addition to writing and directing the pantomime, Leah will play the adorable character of Mrs Penelope Potts.

Beauty and the Beast will also star Finbar Healy, whose dad was the popular north-east entertainer Brendan Healy.

Already a star of the stand-up circuit, Finbar will be making his panto debut at the Empire, playing Lorenzo Lumiere. Finbar’s family have panto connections as Brendan Healy produced the Tyne Theatre’s pantomime for many years.

Empire Theatre Panto launch 1
Leah Bell as Mrs Penelope Potts and Finbar Healy as Lorenzo Lumiere

Beauty and the Beast will also feature Harriet Povey, who will play Belle, and James de Lauch Hay, who will play the Beast and Prince Rafael.

The show promises to deliver all the magic of a traditional panto, but will be spiced up with a number of modern pop songs that everyone can sing along to.

Empire Theatre Panto launch 3
Harriet Povey as Belle and James de Lauch Hay as Prince Rafael

Leah, who has produced Consett’s panto for the last eight years, said, “Over the years I have seen the pantomime grow from a small production that was chugging along to a much-loved and highly anticipated show with a large following.”

“Like all our pantomimes, Beauty and the Beast is aimed at children, but there is plenty to entertain grown-ups too. In fact, we often find adults are laughing and clapping just as hard as the youngsters.”

Beauty and the Beast will be on at the Consett Empire Theatre and Cinema from Saturday 1st December to Monday 31st December. Tickets are priced at £16.00, £14.00 for concessions. Family tickets for two adults and two children can be purchased for £52.00.

To book tickets, please go to www.empireconsett.co.uk or telephone 03000 262 400.

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David writes about local news, thought provoking stories, and yearns to capture the community spirit with a unique writing style.


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