Burnley Pantomime Society marks 40th birthday with generous dose of slapstick

Kevin Kay is the dame in Burnley Pantomime Society's staging of Jack and the Bean Stalk. (s)
Kevin Kay is the dame in Burnley Pantomime Society's staging of Jack and the Bean Stalk. (s)
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Burnley Pantomime Society is celebrating its 40th birthday with a family favourite production

The actors may be amateurs but their vision is to rival the professionals when they put on Jack and the Bean Stalk at Burnley Mechanics next month.

Neil Tranmer, co-director, said: “It’s great to be marking our 40th anniversary. Roll on our 50th!

“This year we’re keeping to tradition, with slapstick, audience participation and storytelling, but the music will be up-to-date.”

From performing in a small church hall, the group has transformed into a panto powerhouse which today entertains audiences of more than 400 people every year.

It was founded by current president Hazel Hodder in Ebenezer Baptist Church, Colne Road, to rescue the dying art of panto in the town. It then moved to the old Burnley College site for two or three years before finding a home at the renovated Burnley Mechanics.

Today, Neil and Hazel are the only remaining founding members.

Over the years, members have enlisted their children to the team.

Neil said: “Family connection is at the core of our shows and it’s that which has seen us through the years.”

Performances run from January 11th - 20th at Burnley Mechanics Theatre.

Tickets: www.burnleymechanics.co.uk