Enchanting performances in Venue Cymru’s Beauty and the Beast

AUDIENCES are being thoroughly entertained and enchanted by Beauty and the Beast – this year’s spectacular pantomime staged at Venue Cymru.

The panto stars CBeebies host Rebecca Keatley as Belle, alongside Venue Cymru favourites John Evans and James Lusted who play Simon Le Bon-Bon and Bob respectively, and Jason Marc-Williams who not only plays dotty dame Nanna Nina but also directed the whole shebang.


@rhyl_journal The cast of Beauty and the Beast tell us why now us the perfect time for panto! #pantomime #llandudno #llandudnopanto #beautyandthebeast #covid #pandemic #lockdown #magical #christmas #entertainment @Venue Cymru ♬ Holiday – FASSounds

For many families it has been the first opportunity to renew the traditional trip to the panto at Christmas time, with shows both cancelled and curtailed during the last few years due to the pandemic.

That was the case for primary school teacher Helen Warner-Hunter who, along with husband Craig, took son Oscar to see the show.

She said that, since his last panto pre-pandemic, the 14-year-old was now old enough to understand the more risque jokes aimed at the mums and dads that are a panto staple.

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She said: “It was lovely evening spent watching Beauty and the Beast at Venue Cymru. It was as great to get back into our family tradition of going to the Panto following Covid.

“The cast were polished and fresh ready for the panto season. Simon was very funny within his role with lots of jokes for everyone. The whole cast brought the well loved characters to life in an enchanting performance.

“The set and costumes were sparkling transporting you to the land of panto magic. With lots of music, songs and dancing it was the perfect performance leaving you full of Christmas cheer.”

During rehearsals for the pantomime, the cast explained how they were thrilled to welcome back audiences after an unusual and uncertain couple of years.

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John Evans said: “We’ve got a fantastic show, it’s romantic and enchanting. There’s something in it for everyone, from grandad right down to the tiny tots.

“This year is going to be fantastic. We’re reminded that after having the Covid year where we didn’t have a panto, and then last year when it was truncated, that now it’s back bigger and better than ever. It’s going to be fantastic, we are really back with a full show and cast.”

That sentiment was echoed by Jason Marc-Williams.

He said: “It’s a moment to forget about the crazy things that are going on around us. To come out here and listen and to enjoy a story, and let us take you to a magical place that also has a moral about not judging a book by its cover and to be open and accepting of people for who they are.

“I think that’s really important right now.”

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CBeebies star Rebecca said she was thoroughly enjoying being in the panto.

She said: “I’ve done quite a few pantos and absolutely love them.

“I think people are going to love the story.

“There’s a lot of heart and a lot of comedy.”

North Wales Pioneer | Llandudno