“Heartbeat” star comes to town in magical pantomime adventure

“Heartbeat” star comes to town in magical pantomime adventure

Dick Whittington pantomime cast

Rotherham panto fans will have a festive treat when ITV Heartbeat’s David Lonsdale stars in the rags-to-riches fairy tale Dick Whittington.

Rotherham Civic Theatre in partnership with Imagine Theatres welcomes David to town for his performance as “Alderman Fitzwarren” in this year’s spectacular production.

The story of Dick Whittington follows the adventures of Dick and his feline friend Tommy the Cat as they travel to London where the streets are supposed to be paved with gold in the hope of seeking fame and fortune. Can they defeat King Rat and his plague of rodents? Will Dick Whittington win the heart of Alice Fitzwarren?

Originally from Southport, David is best known for playing David Stockwell in long-running television series Heartbeat. Having worked on two projects for Netflix and the BBC, he has made various appearances in Coronation Street, as well as Casualty and a small part in the 1997 hit film The Full Monty.

Rotherham Theatres Manager Jo Longworth said she’s delighted David is starring in this year’s family show which will be packed with music and dance, and full of fun, with some boos and hisses thrown in for good measure.

She added: “We’re thrilled to have David perform in Rotherham’s family pantomime. He is a seasoned performer from one of television’s best loved programmes and we warmly welcome his return to Yorkshire.

“After appearing in numerous pantomimes, he’s perfect for the role of good-natured merchant Alderman Fitzwarren. We cannot wait to see David performing on stage and he will be fabulous at getting the audience to join in!”

Joining David on stage as heroic Dick Whittington is Nathan Guy, who has performed in various pantomime productions and appeared in the show This Way Up at Hull Truck Theatre. Nathan trained in post-graduate acting at the Central School of Speech and Drama.

Ashley Andrew will play Alice Fitzwarren, who has acted in roles continuously since graduating from Musical Theatre at Motherwell College in 2008.

This year’s panto dame Ian Hallard will bring laughter and slapstick comedy as Dame Sarah the Cook. Ian is familiar with South Yorkshire having studied at the University of Sheffield. He later achieved a post-graduate course at the Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts.

Ian has starred in numerous theatre roles from Seven Brides for Seven Brothers to A Midsummer Night’s Dream. He has also appeared in television shows Dr Who, Miss Marple, Sherlock and daytime series Doctors.

Huddersfield born Ann Micklethwaite will perform as Fairy Bow-Bells, and has appeared in television soap Emmerdale and in John Godber’s 2017 feature film Last Laugh.

This is the first time that Rotherham Theatres has worked in partnership with Imagine Theatre for their pantomime production.

A live band will perform a musical accompaniment to help bring the production to life.

Rotherham Council’s Cabinet Member for Cleaner, Greener Communities Cllr Sarah Allen, said: “We’re very excited for the start of the pantomime season which looks to be the best one yet with the brilliant combination of a professional cast, live music and fabulous costumes. There will be lots of fun and laughter, and audience participation throughout this spectacular production. It will be a wonderful festive experience for Rotherham panto fans and we look forward to welcoming audiences of all ages to the Civic Theatre.”

The show runs from Friday 30 November 2018 until Sunday 6 January 2019. Tickets start from just £11.50.

Tickets for Dick Whittington pantomime are on sale now and can be purchased quickly and easily online at the Rotherham Theatres website.