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Pantomania is back… ‘Oh yes it is’

Pupils from Keresley Newland Primary School near Bedworth are performing another pantomime with a difference this year, thanks to funding from Warwickshire Crimebeat.

Every year, the 5 to 11-year-olds take part in ‘Pantomania’ – a series of specially adapted performances, written by teacher Jordan Risebrow and directed by fellow teacher Rachel Cooper with a theme around anti-bullying.

This year’s tale is based on the story of Hansel and Gretel, but with a bit of a twist. Hansel and Gretel are the ‘baddies’ who bully people. They deliberately go in search of the gingerbread cottage and start to eat it and are not at al bothered when the sweet, elderly Witch Hazel comes home to find her house half eaten.

The play includes the typical pantomime dame, Gertrude, a postman and songs such as ‘Please Mr Postman’, ‘Knees Up Mother Brown’ and ‘Sugar, Sugar’.

Warwickshire Crimebeat – a charity funded by the High Sheriff of Warwickshire, supported by the Private sector and managed by Warwickshire County Council’s Positive about Young People programme – has provided support for the project every year.

Parents and staff will get to see the performances on Tuesday 8 December (6.30pm start), Wednesday 9 December (1.30pm start), or Thursday 10 December (6.30pm start).

Miss Cooper, said: “Many of us know the story of Hansel and Gretel but this performance takes things to the next level, and highlights the effect of bullying and more importantly, how to deal with it. “

“It is a fantastic opportunity for the whole community to get involved with our school at the same time as reminding people that bullying will not be tolerated. Hopefully it will encourage people to analyse their own behaviour towards others.”

Warwickshire Crimebeat is continually looking for groups of young people to apply for funding. For more information contact Mark Bolton, Operations Development Manager, on 02476 754174 or email markbolton@warwickshire.gov.uk.

For more information about Warwickshire County Council’s Positive about Young People programme or Warwickshire Crimebeat, visit http://www.warwickshire.gov.uk/payp.