THE producers of a planned new pantomime in Thurrock have reluctantly decided to cancel the week-long production of Aladdin.
The celebrity pantomime, set to run from Thursday, December 30 at Thurrock Civic Hall, would have featured stars including well-known Josh Dubovie, Emmerdale actor Joe Sugden, singer and TV personality David van Day, and TV reality show celebrity Nikki Graham.
Theatre Productions had been planning an ambitious and lavish family pantomime for all the family to enjoy, and with promotion for the Show well underway, they were intrigued to discover that ticket sales were not meeting expectation.
On further inspection, they discovered the local star Josh Dubovie who will be playing the role of Aladdin at Blackshots Civic Hall, GRAYS and also the leading performer at The Lighthouse Theatre in Kettering.
However, it has come to light that much of the promotion for Josh has been placed alongside huge displays and promotion for Towngate’s production of the same name Aladdin and Basildon’s forthcoming lights switch on.
As a result, many local people and fans of Josh have been booking for the Towngate’s Aladdin thinking that was where Josh will be appearing.
Theatre Productions’ show would have been the largest to be staged in the borough in recent years.
So, if the people of Thurrock want to enjoy Aladdin they can still do so at Basildon’s Towngate Theatre and those that want to see Josh play the principal role of Aladdin can travel to The Lighthouse Theatre in Kettering for a first class traditional family pantomime alongside the Celebrity cast.
Karie Musson, Marketing Director said “The one really disappointing aspect is that we feel we may have let down our nominated charity, St Luke’s Hospice, who would have received a donation from ticket sales and would have been the recipients of all the proceeds from the gala night opening we had planned, and we will be looking at way in which we can make it up to them, possibly through the work of our celebrities”.
Paul Brace, Manager of Leisure Services at Basildon Council said: “We are sorry to hear that another pantomime has been cancelled however its disappointing that another unconnected production is being blamed. We are very supportive of St Lukes and are sad to hear that they will miss out so we will be running a collection on their behalf during our gala night performance.”