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Pantoland at the Palladium – Mixed Feelings?

Pantoland at the Palladium – Mixed Feelings?

While today’s announcement from Qdos (detailing how the London Palladium is to host a limited three-week run of Pantoland at the Palladium over the festive period) marks a welcomed revival of the celebrated art-form during a year that has decimated the entire theatre sector… we still can’t help wondering if the move represents one rule for the professional sector and another for the amateurs?

We do realise that professional pantomimes all over the country have been cancelled and that means people’s livelihoods – but the fact that it’s taken a substantial amount of National Lottery money to financially cover the required empty seats does seem to suggest a source of income that amateur companies are simply not able to easily plug into.

Well, we are mere hobbyists after all!

…and if we’re mere hobbyists AND Risha Sunak really does hold the opinion that people in the performing arts should get a new job or retrain, then what chance do we really have!

Bearing in mind that audience members will still need to socially distance and wear face-coverings throughout, it will be surprising if many ‘families’ or children turn up. Then again, the annual Palladium production is something of an adult attraction and, historically, hasn’t played to a large proportion of children.

Amateur pantomimes and festive productions that genuinely do offer ‘family’ entertainment have seemingly been left high and dry… with further tightening of restrictions a very real danger.

Nevertheless, we should probably all look for our positive hats at a time when any attempts at returning to live theatre are to be commended.

Regarding the production at the Palladium itself, we note there isn’t a specific title being announced, so we presume the show will be more of a collection of set-pieces – possibly celebrating past performances and possibly letting the star names come up with some of their own routines.

Either way, Qdos and the Palladium panto WILL be lifting the festive curtain this year… and playing to about 25% of the Palladium’s actual capacity while conforming to the Government’s Covid-safe guidelines.