You’re the first women directors of a St Mary’s Panto? And you’re directing Cinderella together? How’s that been? We’re loving it! We’ve worked together before – choreographing with both St Mary’s Panto, and with LOSMT (Lewes Operatic Society Musical Theatre). But it’s our first time taking up the director’s baton. We’re part of the Panto family with a great production team, cast and crew and to take on the director’s role is a real privilege for us both.
What skills do you need to direct the panto? Is it fun? Patience! Sense of humour. Ability to drink wine! You have to deal with different issues as they arise – and this all has to fit into your everyday life. We both work in education and this has proved invaluable when dealing with the adult cast... oh and the children! But most of all it’s about having fun.Have you known each other for a very long time? Forever!!
Are you both originally from Lewes? Yes, although we’ve both had short breaks away from the town – for university, and to get on the property ladder. We’re both pleased we were able to return to our home town.
What do you like about it? Being near family and friends, the pubs, being a part of bonfire (we’re both members of Cliffe), performing with LOSMT, the social life and the scale of the place: being able to go for a walk in town and know you’ll always meet someone you know.
And about the panto? It’s been part of our life forever and there is a real family feel with lots of family connections. Lucy (pictured right in first photo): I was five when I started. My dad, mum and brother have all appeared on stage, with my dad and brother also having directed. Louise: I was 11. My dad and brother have performed, and my brother’s also directed. Mum helps Front of House and backstage.It’s also nice to watch the younger members of our cast coming back year after year, progressing through from chorus to principal roles (hopefully). Both of us started in the tinies’ chorus, and worked our way (as we grew) up! It’s lovely watching the little ones’ confidence grow, and them enjoying their time on stage, performing to their family and friends. Have you always taken part? We’ve always been involved in some way. BUT we have both missed one at some point due to school exams!!! We didn’t like it!!
Any highlights from this year’s show? Many! But you’ll have to come and see it for yourself to find out. It’s great for all ages from 3 to 100. There’s a range of matinee performances – and also early evening starts, so older children can experience an evening of live entertainment without too late a night.
Cinderella runs from Saturday 12th to 19th. Box office 01273 477733. stmaryspanto.org
Photos by Tom Freeman