Phew - just hours until Harrogate panto is launched with legendary star

In a matter of hours a Harrogate legend of the stage will celebrate 20 years in a row as the star of one of the town’s most essential parts of the festive season - the town's bestselling panto.

Monday, 25th November 2019, 2:13 pm
Updated Monday, 25th November 2019, 2:27 pm
Harrogate Theatre panto legend Tim Stedman who is preparing for the launch of this year's panto.

The hilarious and ever-popular Tim Stedman first appeared in Harrogate Theatre’s annual award-winning family favourite in the late 1990s.

But, when the curtain rises on Snow White at 10am on Wedesday, November 27, pride of place amid the magic and sparkle will be given, once again, to the cheeky comic actor who always plays the buffoon.

The panto’s director and co-writer said the talented Stedman is simply amazing.

Phil Lowe said: “This year’s panto is going to be spectacular. We’ve got the most beautiful, sparkly set designed by multi award-winning Morgan Brind and built by our very own Scenic Services team down the road in Starbeck.

“The cast for Snow White are all acclaimed actors, with five of the six main cast having been in the Harrogate pantomime at least once before.

“It’s great to have Howard Chadwick who has played the panto dame many times.

“But the big news is that Tim Stedman is celebrating 20 consecutive years in the Harrogate panto his year.

“He plays the buffoon to perfection each time. He’s just amazingly brilliant.”

Part of the magic and popularity of the Harrogate Theatre panto, which this year runs almost daily to January 19, 2020 is because of the double act behind it.

Each year the winning team of the theatre’s chief executive David Bown and associate director Phil Lowe join forces and come together to write the script, with Lowe then directing it.

David Bown said: “We haven’t produced Snow White at Harrogate Theatre for 12 years, it was the first show we staged after the 2007 refurbishment.

“It’s a classic story with quite a few challenges for our design team, which they have met head on. It’s going to look spectacular.

“It’s great to welcome back performers who haven’t been with us for a while, alongside some of our regulars like Tim and Howard.

“There’s such a buoyant company spirit.”

The sets may be spectacular, the production swish but, despite modern references and pop tunes, the Harrogate panto eschews bad language and bad manners.

And the sell-out notices and rapturous audiences confirm Harrogate Theatre has a formula that works.

Snow White runs at Harrogate Theatre from November 27 to January 19, 2020.