I've been attending panto ever since I can remember. It was always an annual event that we would never miss and I still find it strange that there are people who have never attended a pantomime in their lives.
I think panto is a great part of Christmas fun and attending the theatre is a great hobby of mine, so the combination is quite superb. Panto in Malta is apparently very different from panto in the UK (I would love to watch a panto in the UK at least once) because in Malta a lot of jokes centre around local current affairs and politics and well-known people are made fun of in the midst of whatever the story may be.
I attended two pantos this year, namely FM Theatre's Cinderella and MADC's Scrooge.
For Cinderella I still wasn't too well so I couldn't join in with the hissing at the baddie and the singing and all the audience participation that goes along with panto, unfortunately. Another unfortunate thing is that on the night that I went the audience seemed to have no idea of 'traditional' panto feedback such as the, 'Oh no you didn't', 'Oh yes I did' duet. That was totally lost and I pity the actor who had no feedback to work with!
Scrooge... was utterly amazing! It was one of the most impressive pantos I've ever seen. Everything was wonderful. The scenery was exceptional, the singing was top-notch, the costumes were lovely and the story was delightful (they kept to the original script for the most part and added panto bits to it, rather than having it all panto on a skeleton of the original story). I was truly blown away by this performance and could have watched it for longer.
So now here's looking forward to next year's offerings and seeing what they bring.
'Scrooge' photo courtesy of Pearl Works