Blackburn Life were lucky enough to be invited to the final dress rehearsal for this year’s pantomime at Blackburn Empire Theatre – Cinderella. The show, which opens to the public this Saturday (26th November) stars Linda Lusardi, Lucy Kane and JezO.
The Empire holds about 300 people, so you get a great view of the stage from wherever you are and really feel like you are part of the fun. This year sees the a brand new production by Tom Rolfe Productions, who are behind some of the most popular family shows at The Empire, such as The Wizard of Oz, Halloween Spooktacular and Pirates of the Spooky Lagoon
Linda Lusardi plays the Fairy Godmother, and the first big surprise is her singing voice! We don’t know what we expected, but from the start of the show, she proves that she can really belt out a song. It was a really pleasant surprise and her cheeky local references got us laughing from the get go.
Lucy Kane, plays Cinderella and, just in case you didn’t know, she is also Linda Lusardi’s daughter. Lucy appeared on The Voice UK and was chosen to be part of Team Tom Jones after the judges swung their chairs round to give her vocals the thumbs up. During the show, it’s clear why the judges loved her so much. Her performances from sing-a-long pop songs to stunning ballads was amazing and she played the part of the downtrodden step-sister brilliantly, just how you imagine Cinderella to be!
You don’t just get one helping of laughter during the show, you get it from all angles! Firstly from JezO who has already starred on Britain’s Got Talent and was crowned Family Entertainer of the Year 2022. Staring as the love-stuck Buttons, it’s classic panto comedy from the start, including many a tumble, jokes (from the risqué to jokes your Dad would be proud of) and some amazing magic too! We won’t spoil the surprises, but watch out for some fun and games that will make you laugh your socks off.
Adding to the fun are two very ugly sisters! We lost count of the number of costume changes, as each one got more ridiculous. Colin Roberts and Mervyn Francis are professional panto dames and they work together so well with their constant cries of “Aren’t we beautiful”.
While Prince Charming, played by Adam Trembath, takes part in the fun and games too. Wait till you see the romantic song on the wall, when Buttons tries to muscle in too.
A special mention goes to George Dawes for his role as Dandini too, who properly made us laugh as the runner-up to the Prince. The backing dancers and the performers from local dance school Zoe Taylor Dance Academy added some real Christmas sparkle with their stunning costumes and dancing.
At just about 2 hours long the show keeps you entertained for every minute.
As we said, we won’t spoil all the surprises, but we left singing the final catchy number and were still talking about the added magic at the interval. We loved it. Just proper good family fun.
Cinderella opens to the public on Saturday 26th November, with shows all the way through to 31st December. It’s a cracker of a show.
Find out more and book here https://blackburnempire.ticketsolve.com/ticketbooth/shows/1173620224/