Aladdin, Theatre Royal, Newcastle
With Paul Usher and Felice Arena
13 Dec 1996 – 18 Jan 1997
Cast and running order
Cannon and Ball – Policemen
Alan Harding – DIRECTOR
With thanks to Honda UK for the loan of CAl 25 Rebel Custom Motorcycle
Dates and prices
|Friday 13 December||7.00|
|Saturday 14 December||2.00 7.00|
|Sunday 15 December||NO PERFORMANCES|
|Monday 16 December||2.00 7.00|
|Tuesday 17 December||2.00 7.00|
|Wednesday 18 December||2.00 7.00|
|Thursday 19 December||2.00 7.00|
|Friday 20 December||2.00 7.00|
|Saturday 21 December||2.00 7.00|
|Sunday 22 December||NO PERFORMANCES|
|Monday 23 December||2.00 7.00|
|Tuesday 24 December||2.00 7.00|
|Wednesday 25 December||NO PERFORMANCES|
|Thursday 26 December||2.00 7.00|
|Friday 27 December||2.00 7.00|
|Saturday 28 December||2.00 7.00|
|Sunday 29 December||NO PERFORMANCES|
|Monday 30 December||2.00 7.00|
|Tuesday 31 December||2.00 7.00*|
|Wednesday 1 December||2.00 7.00|
|Thursday 2 December||2.00 7.00|
|Friday 3 December||2.00 7.00|
|Saturday 4 December||2.00 7.00|
|Sunday 5 January||NO PERFORMANCES|
|Monday 6 January||2.00 7.00|
|Tuesday 7 January||2.00 7.00|
|Wednesday 8 January||2.00 7.00|
|Thursday 9 January||2.00 7.00|
|Friday 10 January||2.00 7.00|
|Saturday 11 January||2.00 7.00|
|Sunday 12 January||NO PERFORMANCES|
|Monday 13 January||7.00|
|Tuesday 14 January||2.00 7.00|
|Wednesday 15 January||2.00 7.00|
|Thursday 16 January||2.00 7.00|
|Friday 17 January||7.00|
|Saturday 18 January||2.00 7.00|
Stalls: £12 £14
Grand Circle: £6+ £14
Upper Circle: £6+ £12
Grand Circle Boxes: £56* (4 seats)
Upper Circle Boxes: £24* £32* (3 seats) (4 seats)
Friends of the Theatre Royal: -10% off any two tickets.
Children, Retired, unwaged People AND any Party of 20 or more: can buy £14 tickets for £12.50 each, £12 tickets for £11 each or £6 tickets for £5 each at all RED PERFORMANCES ONLY.
Groups of 100 or more: can buy £14 tickets for £12 each, £12 tickets for £10.50 each or £6 tickets for £4.50 each at all RED PERFORMANCES ONLY.
School Parties of 20 or more: can buy the best available seats for £5 (Gallery for £3) each for the matinee performances on 16,17,18,19 December and 7,8,9,14,15,16 January.
Special Gran and Grandpa matinees: on December 20 and January 2, 3,10 at which Retired People and their Grandchildren can buy the best available seats for £9 each.
Brownie and Cub Groups of 20 or more: can buy the best available seats for £8 each for the evening performances 7,8,14,15 January.
Signed performances on the evening of 15 January: Patrons with hearing impairment (registered) can buy the best available seats for £8 each.
New Year’s Eve 7pm Special: All £14 & £12 seats are priced £9.
NO MORE THAN ONE DISCOUNT PER TICKET. ALL DISCOUNTS ARE SUBJECT TO LIMITED AVAILABILITY AND ONLY APPLY TO THE SPECIFIED PERFORMANCES
Cannon and Ball
Tommy Cannon and Bobby Ball are Britain’s funniest and most successful double act. In a career spanning over 25 years they have achieved a string of honours that puts them among the all-time greats of showbusiness.
On television they have starred in their own series practically every year since 1979; they have also ‘guested’ on all the major shows including Wogan, Parkinson, Des O’Connor, Sunday flight at the Palladium, several Royal Variety Shows and have been featured in a BBC Documentary Funny Business based on
double acts, which also included footage on Martin and Lewis, Laurel and Hardy, and Morecambe and Wise.
To add to their pedigree, they remain the only act to have won three separate national Club Awards and have been named as the Variety Club ‘Personalities of the Year’. Their feature film The Boys in Blue in addition to it’s cinema success, has gone on to become a video best-seller. The boys have also been the subject of This is Your Life ! As the undisputed Kings of Live Entertainment, Cannon and Ball have set standards that will never be equalled.
During the 1970’s they built a strong reputation around the UK cabaret club circuit for being a great live act. They also toured extensively in the hotel circuits of Australia and South Africa.
In 1980 they topped the bill for the very first time at the North Pier, Blackpool, where they played to capacity business for 22 weeks; a feat they surpassed in 1991 when they returned to the Pier and celebrated their 25th Anniversary with a 25 week sell out season. Blackpool has always been happy hunting ground for the Lancashire born twosome, who played the 3,000 seat Opera House during the summer 1994. This was their third season at the Theatre, following their enormously successful seasons in 1985 and 1987.
In addition to Blackpool, Tom and Bab have broken records in theatres all over the UK, including London. In 1981 they played a 6-week season at the Dominion Theatre when every seat was sold before the show opened, and in 1988 their pantomime Babes in the Wood broke all previous pantomime records at the world famous London Palladium, where Cannon and Ball created the record for the largest box office amount taken in one week in British Theatre History.
Paul’s best known work is in Channel 4’s popular soap, Brookside, as the wheeler dealer Barry Grant – the man you love to hate. Paul has thrilled millions of viewers. Paul is one of the longest serving cast members having been in the show from the very beginning. He has played Barry through a series of problems that most of us would have nightmares about! Barry has grown from being a youngster with family problems, including his brother’s death, through to a double killer with the murder of his best friend’s wife and child on his conscience, to a nightclub and restaurant owner with strong gangster tendencies trying to track down his missing child! But Paul insists that Brookside is not all doom and gloom!
Other current projects include working on a new album and a news album and a new television series is in the pipeline.
Paul is born and bred Liverpudlian and made his Pantomime debut last year in Llandudno -just over the water from his home town.
This year sees Paul playing Abanazar in Aladdin a role he is very much looking forward to playing.
Felice began his professional acting career whilst still at college. He was chosen to perform in The United national Musical Peace Child in the US and Ireland. Soon after graduating Felice landed the role he is best remembered for, Marco Alessi in the hit international soap neighbours.
Following his departure from the TV show in 1993, he decided to move to the UK. After an impromptu song on GMTV, he landed the role of Woof in the revival of the West End musical Hair. Following this, he played the role of Jesus in Godspell and Joseph in Joseph and his Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat at The Mayflower Theatre in Southampton. Felice recently completed a UK tour of the musical What A Feeling, in which he co-starred with Sonia and Irene Cara.
His other television credits include (Australia) Mission Impossible, Kelly, Phoenix, Embassy, (UK) Children’s BBC, GMTV, The Big Breakfast, DJ Cat, Hangar 17, Saturday Disney and Noel’s House Party.
Felice is also a talented children’s author having signing a two book deal to write children’s books with Harper Collins. His debut novel, Dolphin Boy Blue was published earlier this year. His second novel, Mission Buffalo will be available in the Spring of 1997.
For further information please contact, Felice Arena UK Fan Club, PO Box 270, Leeds, LS5 3XQ.
Sharon was brought up in Hull and moved to London at the age of sixteen to start a three year course at the Italia Conti Academy of Theatre Arts.
On completing this course she went into reparatory theatre to appear in The King and I and West Side Story.
Her television credits include 321 (Yorkshire Television), Wogan (BBC), Bruce Forsyths Generation Game (BBC), Noel’s House Party (BBC), Aspel Live (LWT), Barrymore (LWT), Benny Hill (Thames TV), Hale and Pace (LWT), Ruby Wax (BBC), Children in Need (BBC), VE Day Gala Live for Peace (Carlton). Being screened in the New Year is a TV special Ain’t Misbehavin’ starring Robson and Jerome.
Sharon was also one of the backing singers with Sonia when she did Song for Europe.
This will not be the first time Sharon has appeared in Pantomime with Cannon and Ball, one of the previous performances was at the Alhambra Theatre, Bradford as Maid Marion in Babes in the Wood.
As well as television and theatre she has taken part in many fashion shows, cabarets, videos and television. After a long run in television Sharon is happy to be performing in the theatre again this Christmas.
Debbie Lee Harrison
Debbie trained as a gymnast competing in national and International competitions and was also a member of the national Youth Dance Company.
She then trained at the Italia Conti Academy. Upon completion she joined Coroboree Jazz Dance Company appearing with such names as the Phoenix Dance Company and Janet Smith and Dancers.
Among her varied work, Debbie has been involved in various Pantomimes including Babes in the Wood starring John Inman, Cinderella starring Des O’Connor, the title role in Sleeping Beauty starring Elizabeth Powers, Tinkerbell in Peter Pan at The Arena, St Albans, Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz Croydon and the title role in Peter Pan at the Gaiety Theatre, Isle of Wight.
Other stage credits include the national tour of Barnum with Paul nicholas including a season at the Dominion Theatre, London followed by the role of Dainty June in the musical Gypsy starring Lynda Baron, Belle in a national tour of A Christmas Carol, the musical Happy as a Sandbag and most recently Lady Jacqueline Carstone in Me and My Girl at the Sandowne Pavilion, Isle of Wight.
Plays to her credit are Tippers at the Kings Head Theatre, Wodowers Houses by Bernard Shaw at the Theatre Museum, Covent Garden, the role of nancy in Gaslight Honey Tucks in The Mating Game at St George’s Theatre, Great Yarmouth and Debbie in A Bed Full of Foreigners at the Shaklin Theatre, Isle of Wnihl Debbie’s television credits include a role in BBC’s KYTV with Angus Deayton.
Debbie is looking forward to a wonderful season Newcastle playing the Princess in Aladdin at the Theatre Royal.
Patricia trained at The Guildhall School of Music and Drama and her first professional appearance was at The Mermaid Theatre. She has played in repertory all over the country and toured extensively in the UK, appearing with Mollie Sugden, Billy Dainty, Arthur English, Morcambe and Wise, Michael Barrymore and Jack Douglas. She also played Toine in Toronto opposite Adrienne Posta’s Piaf. In the West End Patricia has appeared in The Mousetrap, Oh Calcutta and The Cherry Orchard with Dame Judi Dench. She played in the Chichester Festival Season in 1990 and a production of Richard II at The Redgrave Theatre, Farnham, with Christopher Casonove and Angharad Rees. Her television appearances include The Wednesday Caller, Hear The Tiger See The Bay, The Young Elizabeth, Fresh Fields, The New Statesman and Ruth Rendell’s Vanity Dies Hard . Most recently finished filming some episodes of Eastenders. Her film credits include Anne Of A Thousand Days, Escape From The Dark and Revenge Of The Pink Panther.
Patricia is a director and founder member of Courtney Brill Theatre Company, which is setting up a tour with Ruth Madoc and Brian Murphy in the Spring of 1997.
Syd Francis started in show business at the age of ten. He was touring theatres all over the country billed as “Britain’s Wonder Born Trumpeter”. Since then he has played all over the world in theatres, cabaret, television and radio. He has worked in forty-three countries and appeared on Television in twelve.
Syd brought comedy into his act in 1969 mixing it with his expert trumpet playing. He was soon booked as a member of Granada Television’s The Comedians which was followed by many more Television and Radio appearances. Syd has worked with most of the country’s big star names and worked for three years with Mike Yarwood playing Summer and Winter seasons which included six months in the West End of London at the famous Victoria Palace. Syd has appeared in thirty pantomimes over the years and is now firmly established as one of the country’s best Dames. He has a wonderful way with the children, never talking down to them, always getting them on his side. Syd is one of the best liked artists in show business both on and off the stage.
James Welsh trained in drama, jazz, tap and modern dance at Moughton and Jacobs Darice and Drama College. He began his dancing career as a member of The Prize Quys who won the British Dance Championships in 1981. After two successful summer season at The Morse Shoe Bar in Blackpool, The Prize Guys released a record called Hew Beginning. They appeared on many TV shows including Top of The Fops and Wogan. They were chq; to represent Britain in the Eurovision Song Contest, dancing and singing backing vocals for Rikki Pebbles!’
As a solo artist James is in constant demand for fashion shows, photographic work. Panto’s and Summer Seasons. For the last six panto seasons James’ work has included playing The Qenie of the Lamp in Aladdin at Oxford, Lewisham, Newcastle, Wolverhampton, Manchester Palace and the Bradford Alhambra. He received rave reviews for his performance as the funky, dancing, rapping Qenie. He has starred alongside the late Marti Cane, Qareth Hunt, Brian Conley, Anita Dobson, The Krankies, Rod Hull & Emu, Billy Pearce, Roy Barraclough, Richard De Vere and Joe Pasquale. His summer seasons include The Bobby Davro Show in Blackpool and also in Torquay. James featured as MC Hammer in Rock with Laughter in Blackpool, where the show broke box office records and he starred alongside Linda Lusardi, Billy Pearce and The Grumbleweeds. In between shows James has toured with the Coca Cola and Panasonic Roadshows, appearing with the likes of Let Loose, Slam, Worlds Apart and Ultimate Chaos.
James’ hobbies include swimming, badminton, skating, jogging and boxing, so he’s perfect for modelling sportswear etc.. He has appeared in many fashion shows at trade events and conferences.
Claire is from Gateshead, where she trained at the Reavley Theatre School from the age of five. She has completed many professional engagements to date, both in England and abroad.
Summer seasons have been spent in Scarborough and in Blackpool at the Horseshoe Bar in Mystique, the Joe Longthorne Summer Spectacular and two seasons at the Grand Theatre working with The Grumbleweeds and also Cannon and Ball. Abroad Claire has completed contracts Spain, Egypt, Sri Lanka, Germany and America and Norwa; She has entertained the British Forces in both Northern Ireland and the Falkland Islands.
Pantomime Seasons have seen Claire at Bradford’s Alhambra Theatre with David Essex and at Newcastle’s Theatre Royal with Bobby Davro and the following year with Little and Large. Last Christmas was spent at Darlington’s Civic Theatre with Paul Shane. Claire is delighted to be back at the Theatre Royal as part of the cast of Aladdin.
Tracy Louise Timms
Tracy studied at Brian Rogers ‘Performers College’ in Corringham, Essex.
Professional credits to date include:- If They Could See Us now & Getting It Together both at the Towngate theatre, Basildon, Rock and Roll, London Palladium, Time Of Our Lives summer show at Blackpool Tower and the pantomime Dick Whittington.
Television work includes:- Motormouth and a commercial for Henneys clothes.
Tracy has also worked for the American choreographer Nick Navaro on the MS Ecstasy for Carnival cruise lines and Jerry Robinson and P & O cruises on board the SS Canberra. She has also appeared in various cabarets and worked with Lionel Blair and Michael Ball.
Hannah – Lee Chandler
Hannah – Lee trained at Laine Theatre Arts. Theatre Credits include: Dandini in Cinderella and The Magic World of Aladdin, both at Theatre Royal, Brighton, Summer Season and National Tour with Russ Abbot choreographed by Chris Baldock and Cannon and Ball Summer season at Great Yarmouth. Television and Film Credits include: Royal Variety Performance choreographed by Anthony Van Laast and Arlene Phillips, Belgian T. V. Spectacular, Shine On Harvey Moon shot at Fountain Television Studios and a featured part in a film for Polygram Fishing – A New Angle. Other work includes: The Outrageously Pink Video for Warner, Allied Dunbar Trade Show, Fashion shows for Dickens & Jones and Tesco, Hair shows at Earls Court, London, two cruises for P&O on Canberra and Sea Princess and a season with London Monarchs Squad.
Kelly trained at Laine Theatre Arts where she graduated last year. Credits include London Monarchs Cheerleaders appearances on Blue Peter, Noel’s House Party, Pre Match Entertainment for Sky TV, and various TV commercials in both England and Europe.
Mark trained at the Urdang Academy in London and graduated in July 1996.
Professional theatre experience to date includes the following:- Aladdin at the Sandown Pavilion, Aspects of Dance at Wimbledon & Hackney, Faust at The Old Vic, Hyber nation the Orchard Theatre and Anne Frank Tribute at the Trinity Arts.
Mark has also appeared on the Big Breakfast on various PA’s with the pop group Evoke.
Paul trained at the Royal Ballet School and appeared in various productions with the Royal Ballet Company and subsequently Scottish Ballet. He decided to pursue the more commercial world of theatre with various credits to date as follows:- Walt Disney Magical Moments – European tour, Caribbean & Mediterranean cruises with the Costa Romantica Lines, a television commercial for the Co-Op!, various shows in Italy, Israel & Greece with the dance company Kaleidoscope, Cinderella (understudying Dandini) at Northampton Derngate and a magazine photo shoot for Slumberland. Paul plays piano & keyboards to a professional standard.
Rory The Tiger
Rory’s early life in India wasn’t easy. Ignored by his friends because he preferred playing games and telling jokes to eating people. Rory soon left to find fame and fortune at Haven Holidays. He earned his stripes with his own Tiger Club for children and can now be seen entertaining at Haven Holiday parks throughout Britain with his co-stars Anxious the Elephant and Greedy the Gorilla. He has recorded four albums, and has several TV appearances to his credit.
He is now making his first appearance in Pantomime this year.
Marron Stage School
The staff and pupils of The Marron Stage School would like to say a big ‘Hi’ and Hello to all their friends in the north East. This year we are all excited at performing with the very popular duo Cannon and Ball.
1996 has been another successful year for us in both competitive and theatrical work and our hall of fame has increased by two championship and seven scholarship winners, some of which were at National level. We would like to take this opportunity to wish every success to our pupil Stephanie Watson, who has now graduated to the Royal Ballet Upper School. Our ‘old girls’ are currently appearing in Pantomime throughout the country, we are thinking of them all at this festive time.
Our motto is ‘there is no such thing as great talent without great willpower’ and we are very proud to say every child on this stage has plenty of both. May we wish you all a Merry Christmas and a prosperous New Year.
Children: Katie Barrass, Victoria Marshall, Holly Dixon, Charlotte Martin, Marie Forster, Amanda Pratt, Lesley Henderson, Anna Pyburn, Hannah Hussein, Helen Ramsay, Rozanne Kirke, Gemma Richardson, Catherine Laing, Sarah Scott, Sarah Ledger, Laura Wilkinson
Alan began his career as a dancer, working on every major variety show, but in 1981, he went to Central Television to stage and choreograph Emu’s World. He later became Associate Producer on the program which lasted for seven series.
During this time he travelled extensively to Belgium for The Tina Turner Show; Holland for The Las Vegas Review and Hot Ice and numerous fashion shows in Los Angeles, Chicago and Atlanta.
The eighties saw Alan directing many pantomimes and staging and choreographing many of the yearly Royal Variety Shows produced by the BBC and London Weekend Television. He also staged and choreographed the undermentioned shows during this time:-
The Royal Gala, Queen Mother’s 80th Birthday, The Royal Gala Princes Trust at the Mayflower Theatre, The Might of 100 Stars (London Weekend Television), Gemma, The Girls and Gershwin (Scottish Television), The Tom Jones Special, (BBC), Sunday Might at the London Palladiumwith Jimmy Tarbuck (London Weekend Television), Seaside Special (Southern Television) The Laughter Show with Les Dennis and Dustin Gee (BBC) and 3-2-1 I (Yorkshire Television). In 1993 Michael Barrymore was the star of the Royal Variety Show (London Weekend Television) and for this, Alan staged ‘showstopping’ Squaddies Routine. In 1994 Carlton Television produced the V.E. Day Show and again Alan staged and choreographed Michael’s act.
This relationship continued until 1996 during which time Alan not only staged and choreographed all Michael’s television shows for London Weekend Television, but in 1993 became Associate Producer and in 1991-1995 was asked to produce the shows. He was also responsible for producing Michael’s commercial videos and stage shows. At present, Alan is working with Scottish Television producing The Fun House.
Chris has choreographed and directed shows in television, theatre and the pop industry. He is also currently Artistic Director for Starlight Express at the Apollo Theatre, London.
Television credits include The Des O’Connor Show for Thames TV, Noel’s House Party for the BBC and numerous other television specials throughout Europe.
Video and pop work includes choreographing numbers for Kim Wilde, Those Two Girls, Judy Cheeks, The Chippendales, Scatman Jon, Worlds Apart and the live video recording of Outrageously Pink! Chris earlier this year choreographed the video You Should Be Dancing for E-Sensual and also the live tour for the group Moble Savages who supported Shaggy on his German Tour. He has also worked with Michelle Gayle and staged and directed Eternal on their 1994 tour.
Theatre credits are as follows, Director and Choreographer for Prisoner Cell Block H – The Musical starring Lily Savage, Associate Choreographer Hunting of the Snark, Prince Edward Theatre, Assistant Director/ Choreographer A Musical With Muscle (Chippendales), The Strand Theatre, London Choreographer for The Russ Abbot Summer Spectacular, BIC Bournemouth, Director/ Choreographer Blackpool’s Biggest Show 1995 with Les Dennis, Su Pollard and Roy Walker, Morth Pier Blackpool, A Tribute to Andrew Lloyd Webber for the Brit Awards 1995 and Aladdin (1995/6) for Paul Elliott (E&B Productions) at Wimbledon Theatre.
Chris has choreographed a number of fashion and trade shows for Puma, Adidas, Asics, SPX, ISI, The Look, Tesco’s Anglian Windows and Rank Xerox.
Every year over one million people see a ‘live’ show written or devised by Jon Conway. At this rate, he believes that statistically speaking he should have made the whole nation laugh by the end of his career!
Jon’s favourite form of entertainment is pantomime, and this year is very special, since he will see his 100th panto script staged. This probably makes him the country’s leading panto author. His two favourite shows are Snow White and Peter Pan.
Jon was born on a circus, and his early career as a performer took him form there to comedy magic and straight acting in TV soaps, before becoming a producer/director at the tender age of twenty four. Since then, together with Mick Thomas their Artist Management Group Company has become one of the major production houses in the country and also responsible for managing many of today’s leading performers.
He is particularly proud of helping to discover and develop many of todays top comedy performers, most notably; Bobby Davro, Brian Conley, Shane Richie, Billy Pearce and Joe Pasquale. Jon has personally staged innumerable summer shows, concert tours and pantos, including a gala at the RSC and the Blackpool Centenary Spectacular before Her Majesty the Queen. He has also devised many shows for TV including the current children’s BBC TV hit for the Chuckle Brothers To Me To You.
1996 is Nick Thomas’ fifteenth year as a Producer. As Managing Director of Artist Management Group he now controls the largest Entertainment Company in the UK, with interests in Theatre, Television, Radio and Artist Representation. Mick has homes in London and north Yorkshire with a wife and two children in one of them.
During a varied career Rick has been privileged enough to work with a whole host of household names including Freddie Starr, Cannon and Ball, Norman Wisdom, Jim Davidson, The Nolans, The Krankies, Tony Christie, Tommy Steele, singer song Gerard Kenny, Frank Carson and the late Marti Caine.
His work has also included writing incidental music for radio and television and spells in the musical theatre on Les Miserables and Cats.
Since 1993, Rick has had the opportunity to assist Cannon and Ball in exporting their unique brand of comedy to the United States including engagements in Florida, Missouri and on tour.
Rick has been Musical Director on many Pantomimes and Summer Seasons, the recent Granada TV series Live From the Lillydrome and the last two season has conducted the orchestra for the Lord Delfont Gala Tribute Concerts at the Blackpool Opera House. Recently he has been at the Grand Theatre in Blackpool for Rock With Laughter 1996 and is delighted to be making his debut in Newcastle at the Theatre Royal.
Rick is a keen golfer and tennis player and likes to spend his spare time watching his local football team Blackpool Wren Rovers.
Members of the band are:
Paul Frankish Keyboards & 2nd Percussion
Ron Humphrey Bass Guitar
Steve Doneathy Drums
John Flinch Trumpet