Cindy and the Villanelles is a two-act ‘panto’ based on the story of Cinderella, but with local and topical twists. For those unfamiliar with the genre of pantomime, there is much to discover and love in this form of theatre. Based on the harlequins of old, you’ll find cheesy jokes, a villain to ‘boo’ at and fun for all the family. Two things to look out for in every good panto: the chase scene where the audience yell out at the villain “look behind you,” and the good-natured banter that goes on between members of the cast, of “oh no you can’t” and “oh yes he can.”
The local all-star cast includes recent school-leaver Ella Moore as Cindy and Kim Nichol, Gabriel Schwarz and Merle Schlüter as the Villanelles, assistants to the villainous property developer played by Richard Elvey. Rich is also producing the play, which is being directed by Gilly Pugh from a script by Liz Breslin. “I’m so excited, and I just can’t hide it,” says Gilly, which may or may not be a nod to just how many song lyrics are embedded in the script.
The team are looking forward to bringing laughs and Christmas cheer to the Lake Wanaka Centre, and the show has been scheduled for just before Christmas, running from the 21st-23rd December at 7pm, with a 2pm matinee on the 23rd. (Please note that there won’t be a bar but there will be plenty of Black Peak Gelato icecream to purchase.)
Tickets, at $19 for adults and $9 children, are available from Eventfinda
Door sales will be available on the day at $20/$10. The Facebook page for the event is Wanaka Pantomimers, which will keep you updated with who’s playing who in the cast and general pantomime goings on.