Waddon panto comes a cropper due to ‘technical issues’

Today’s matinee and evening performances of Jack And The Beanstalk at the Waddon Leisure Centre have been cancelled by the producers due to “technical issues”.

Waddon Leisure Centre: venue for the Croydon Panto, but four shows have been cancelled

Q Productions declined to elaborate on the nature of the “issues”, but a spokesperson said that the decision was reached as the final option and done with the safety of cast, crew and audience in mind.

Tonight’s cancellation is a particular set-back, since it had been intended as the big press night for show reviewers.

Jack And The Beanstalk is this year’s Croydon Panto, and is being staged at the Waddon Leisure Centre while Fairfield Halls is under-going a £30million refurbishment. Staging a modern, all-singing-and-dancing stage show at a temporary venue has provided the producers with additional challenges, though they managed a successful run at the leisure centre in 2016.

This year, the show’s opening night was due to be on Thursday, but that performance, and last night’s, were also cancelled.

The chorus includes a number of Croydon schoolchildren, who underwent a rigorous audition process to join the cast of West End performers. The stars of the show, singer-comedian Jonny Awsum and TV presenter Patsy Billings, were both said to be very disappointed at the set-back.

Eddie Dredge, Director of Q Productions, said: “Regrettably, due to technical issues we had to make the difficult decision to cancel performances of Jack and the Beanstalk on December 7, 8 and 9, with the welfare and safety of patrons, staff and actors being our priority.

“We offer heartfelt apologies to those affected, and have contacted all customers to rearrange seats for an alternative performance, or to refund their tickets.”

The production team is hopeful that the show will go on, starting from tomorrow night’s scheduled performance.

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