The team at the New Wolsey in Ipswich have worked incredibly hard to put together Covid-safe performances of their new panto, The Snow Queen. There are limited, socially distanced seats in the theatre itself, with live stream tickets available for those who would prefer to watch from home. Using a mix of live action, animation, pre-recorded films and interaction with the viewers at home, this was the most technically ambitious pantomime that the theatre has ever produced.
The Snow Queen is set in the little town of Ballbroken (yes, really!) where the lovely Gerda is about to be crowned the Queen of May. Gerda’s love interest Kay catches the eye of the evil Snow Queen and is spirited away to her Ice Palace. Gerda and her friends Dame Sigrid Smorgasbord and Simon Clinkerbin must set off on an adventure to save Kay from the Snow Queen and her accomplice Icicle.
The live stream was easy to access with a simple click and then the stage was beamed right into our home. The cast bounded onto the stage and you could tell how excited they were to be back at the New Wolsey. Each of the cast sang and played multiple instruments while carrying the plot forward.
The camera work helped to create an immersive experience for us watching at home. There were multiple camera angles so that you could see everything going on, including when an audience member was picked out by Dame Sigrid! You could tell the production team had put a lot of thought into how the audience at home could be included, especially as pantomime is generally an interactive form of theatre.
During each performance one household watching at home are chosen at random and asked for an item from their home to be taken to the theatre. Then a twitter poll takes place to give a name to the prop. The crew really have thought of everything!
I absolutely loved my night in watching The Snow Queen. It was so nice to be doing something different on a Thursday evening! I really enjoyed the pre-recorded films of the cast around Ipswich and Suffolk. It added another dimension to the performance that I hadn’t seen during other pantomimes before. And of course the music was brilliant; how can you not love a good sing-a-long at this time of year!
The Rock ‘n’ Roll Panto runs until Thursday 24th December. If you’d like to find out more about The Snow Queen, you can watch my interview with the cast on IGTV. Click here to watch!
Disclaimer: This was not a paid post. I was gifted a live stream ticket by the New Wolsey Theatre but was not asked to review the performance.
This is an account of what I experienced and I am not in any way responsible for what you experience. For my full disclaimer policy, please click here.