Oh yes it is! Charity pantomime is back with a bang

The cast of Dick Whittington. Pictures by Adrian Murray
The cast of Dick Whittington. Pictures by Adrian Murray

Ripon Charity Pantomime Group are excited to announce their forthcoming production of ‘Dick Whittington’.

‘Dick Whittington’ promises to be yet another bundle of laughs with all the ingredients for a fun family night out.

Helena Tarren (Queen Rat), Mike Spurgeon (Alderman Fitzwarren) and Jake England (Lord Mayor of London)

Helena Tarren (Queen Rat), Mike Spurgeon (Alderman Fitzwarren) and Jake England (Lord Mayor of London)

The show will be filled with laughter, slapstick and a mixture of upbeat songs that will have you chuckling, clapping and singing along with the amazing team of local talent from the Ripon area.

Chris Scott, producer and script writer, said: “The story of Dick Whittington is one of good versus bad, with Dick teaming up with a Cat to fight the evil King Rat and his army of rats. Of course there is a love story too, and lots and lots of laughs. The pantomime is sure to please everyone who comes to see it!”

Chris, who was the Dame in last year’s Ripon panto has been producer, musical director or actor in numerous pantomimes since 2005, and has played various parts including the dame and other comical roles.

The leading role of Dick Whittington will be played by Beth Edwards who has previously been in many other Ripon Charity Pantomime productions, originally as a chorus member in Jack and the Beanstalk, followed by principal roles in other productions including the role of the Beast in Beauty and the Beast, and Jeanie in Sinbad and the Dark Crystal.

Naomi Creasley, Aimee Childs, Edith Scott. Ella Salden and Emma Money (dancer and choreogapher)

Naomi Creasley, Aimee Childs, Edith Scott. Ella Salden and Emma Money (dancer and choreogapher)

Beth is currently training to be a teacher with York St John University, having completed degree Music and Drama Hull University, and has also performed in numerous other roles both in this country and in China.

Dick’s trusty Cat is played by Katie Plunkett, this year stepping up to her first Ripon Charity Panto Principal role having been with the Ripon Charity Pantomime Group (RCPG) for five years firstly in the Junior, then Senior chorus, and last year she was also one of the dancers.

Whilst Dick and his cat, try to stop a gang of rats stealing the city’s treasures, he meets the beautiful Alice Fitzwarren (Sophie McCudden). Sophie has been part of RCPG for six years, and like Katie started in the Junior Chorus. This year is her second principal role as ‘Alice’, following on from her previous role of ‘Alana Dale’ in ‘Babes in the Wood.’

Sophie is hoping to pursue Performing Arts and Drama in her future.

Beth Edwards (Dick Whittington), Sophie McCudden (Alice Fitzwarren), Katie Plunkett (The Cat), Ian Holloway (King Rat), Cath Coleman(Bubbles) and Joanne Johnson (Squeak

Beth Edwards (Dick Whittington), Sophie McCudden (Alice Fitzwarren), Katie Plunkett (The Cat), Ian Holloway (King Rat), Cath Coleman(Bubbles) and Joanne Johnson (Squeak

The production this year is being choreographed by Emma Money, a student at Ripon Grammar School whose passion for dance and performance started at the age of three from her early ballet, tap and modern jazz classes with Chatsworth Dance Centre. This year Emma has changed roles from being leading heroine in the last three pantomimes (having performed as Little Red Riding Hood last year with Ripon Charity Pantomime Group), to being part of the creative production team, using her dance skills to choreograph this year’s entertaining chorus line moves.

Ripon Charity Pantomime Group provides fun-filled family entertainment whilst raising money for local causes, and approximately £ 2,500 is raised every year for a range of local causes and charities. In the last 40 years, Ripon Charity Pantomime Group has raised in excess of £50,000 supporting organisations such as the Ripon Walled Garden, Ripon Citizen’s Advice,

Ripon Swimming Club, Scuba Diving for All, H.A.P.P.Y (hedgehog rescue), and World Challenge volunteering expeditions for local students.

The performances will be at Outwood Academy School, Ripon and will run from Wednesday 17 January to Saturday 20 January 2018 and showcase local talent who will provide a great night out for all the family. Ticket prices have been held at last year’s prices at only £8.00 adults & £6.00 children / OAP’s.

Tickets will be available from Monday 13 November at Stuff 4 Offices, 13 Fishergate, Ripon, HG4 1EA or by calling 01765 608122.