Pantomime stars: It’s a good feeling when kids are booing at you

Danny Grehan in costume as Abanazar

People heckling you would be cause for alarm – unless you’re a pantomime baddie that is.

For these festive actors its a sign of success, and the louder people in the audience shout, the better they feel.

“It’s always a good feeling to get all the kids booing at you,” says pantomime star Danny Grehan. “If they’re booing at you, you know you’ve done a good job.”

He’s playing the evil Abanazar in the Porthcawl production of Aladdin.


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“The whole participation of people shouting, you never get that apart from in panto, where everybody is allowed just to vocalise that enjoyment,” says Dick Bradnum, who will be playing Widow Twankey in Aladdin.

“In the age that we live in, people are in front of screens a lot of different types and to get them in front of a live experience where there are real human beings around them and real noise, there is something genuinely uplifting about it. It’s not a bad job to be doing,” adds Danny.

Advertisement for Aladdin on a Porthcawl notice board

Working all through the Christmas holidays does have its downsides and there are some things the paid wish they had more time to enjoy.

“The only thing with panto is you’ve got to work on the 26th so you always miss out on cold turkey and chips, which is one of my favourite bits of Christmas,” says Danny.

Dick adds: “Boxing Day audiences are a little bit quieter in my experience because I think they’re still recovering from Christmas Day.

“You can still smell the turkey off them. Bloated, sitting there happy.”

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