Panto spreads a smile even outside of the theatre…

 Ben Wooldridge tells us about a rewarding week at work…

There are many things that I enjoy about my job, but the last couple of days have to be among the most rewarding having  taken some of the stars of our pantomime, Cinderella to visit some very special children.

Asif gives Cinders a kiss at Birmingham Childrens Hospital

Asif gives Cinders a kiss at Birmingham Childrens Hospital

Panto is always an extremely busy schedule for the cast, but performers are always willing to give up their time before or between shows to make a special visit to some outstanding charities to see the work that they do and the people they benefit.

Last Thursday, Kathryn Rooney (our Cinders) and Dan Burton (the dashing Dandini) joined me on a visit to Birmingham Children’s Hospital. Appearing on the wards in full costume, the panto stars took time to meet and greet with patients, their families and staff  before heading back to the theatre for the matinee performance. We met some great kids on our travels, especially cheeky little Asif who you can see giving  Cinderella a kiss on the cheek! Birmingham Hippodrome will this year again be supporting the hospital by offering patients and their families free tickets to see Cinderella as part of the ongoing Panto Appeal made possible by kind donations from the public when booking tickets.  Thanks to everyone who has donated – you make this possible.

Henry and family meet Basil Brush at Acorns Childrens Hospice

Henry and family meet Basil Brush at Acorns Childrens Hospice

Following on from Thursday’s magical trip, I then had the pleasure of escorting the one and only Mr.Basil Brush to Acorns Childrens Hospice in Selly Oak;  Acorns cares for nearly 600 children who have life limiting or life threatening conditions.  We had a great time chatting to the children at the hospice and Basil made a fantastic friend in Henry who showed our fox round the centre.

All in all it proved to be a memorable highlight of my time working at Birmingham Hippodrome and one that I look forward to repeating this time next year!

Cinderella ends Sunday 29th January.

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