It has started to be something of a tradition that the Pattaya City Expats Club holiday season meetings are kicked off with a pantomime performance by Pattaya Players. This year, at the December 15 meeting, Club Members were treated to a showing of Pattaya Players’ Christmas Pantomime “Cinderella and the Velvet Slipper” by Peter Nutall, directed by Chris Harman.
As the performance got underway it was obvious to all that the cast were well developed in their characters and were having fun. Club members from the UK were familiar with the pantomime format and had no problem joining in with the audience participation with ‘boos’ and ‘hisses’ to the villains, “cheers” for the heroes, saying ‘he’s behind you’ when asked to point out a hidden character, and joining in an argument between characters with an “oh yes it is” or “oh no it isn’t.” While other members of the audience, at first, were slow to respond, they eventually got the hang of it and joined in.
The traditional main characters, Cinderella played by Caidie Brennan, Dandini (Cinderella’s love interest) played by Mara Swankey and Buttons (Cinderella’s friend) played by Aom Konchan, all worked well together and their singing of the duet with Aom performing a ballet alongside them was a highlight for many in the audience.
Everyone was amazed to learn that that it was the first time on stage for Caidie (Cinderella) and that she was only 11 years old. Also, that Aom who played Buttons was only a few years older but had been performing with Pattaya Players for 3 years. It is very commendable that this group encourages young talent (Expat and Thai) and helps them develop their self-confidence and their craft as actors.
The comedy characters – the Witch (played by Wendy Khan), Prince Charming (played by Charles Elwin), The King (played by Andrew Murphy), Fiddle the Town Clerk (played by Gary Hougen) and the two Ugly Sisters (played by Chris Harman and Doug Campbell) were great fun and provided real humour and enjoyment for all present. The cast were ably backed up by their sound effects men, John Khan and Ray Lightbown who provided spooky music and other offstage effects.
After the performance, the MC brought everyone up to date on the upcoming club events and others of interest. This was followed by the Open Forum where questions are asked and answered about Expat living in Thailand, especially Pattaya. For more information about the PCEC, visit their website at: www.pcec.club.