This year the Grand Opera House’s annual panto celebrates 30 years of the “Queen of Belfast Pantomime” with the tale as old as time – Beauty and the Beast.
The beautiful Belle from the village of Ballyfettridge, immune to the “charming” pursuits of the chiselled and arrogant Flash Harry (Danny Bayne), follows her father, Paddy the Inventor, to a cursed castle only to be held captive by it’s master – the Beast. But is Belle the key to unlocking the enchantment of the castle and the heart of its occupier?
May McFettridge as housekeeper Mrs Potty, injects her trademark hilarious pandemonium and audience ridicule with Belle’s father (Paddy Jenkins) as an excellent sidekick. Mandy Muden as Magic Mandy adds to the mayhem with her comedic magic and bag full of tricks. The audience were wowed with floating cars, falling chickens and disappearing clothes, the stage was awash with vibrant colour, from the set to the big and bold costumes and the choreography was fun and lively with the cast dancing to energetic numbers celebrating the legend that is May McFettridge.
May is in fine form, with 30 years of pantomime under her wig she brought the older members of the audience along for the madcap ride. This huge production is full of laughs, ridiculousness and rollicking good fun for all ages, a fantastic festive night out. May McFettridge has already announced her return to the Grand Opera House for the 2020 panto season with Goldilocks and the Three Bears.
Beauty and the Beast runs until Sunday 12 January, with tickets starting from £21.75 (including booking fee) and £2 off per ticket for a 4 person family ticket. Check out the Grand Opera House website for dates with the best availability and booking.