Tommy and Dotty's biggest adventure yet, The Little Panto with the Big Heart!
DAME SET TO TAKE FINAL BOW – BUT WE’RE STILL DOTTY ABOUT PANTO
ONE of the country’s longest-running dames is hanging up her bloomers and hairpiece when this panto season ends – aw it’s sadder than that!
Bob Stott, who has played the hilarious and loveable Dame Dotty for almost 40 years, will take his final curtain call in The Customs House’s annual show.
The South Shields venue has just announced its cast list for Dick Whittington and everyone’s geared up to make sure that, as the final curtain falls on January 6, Bob has a run he’ll never forget.
Bob will of course be joined on stage by the Customs House’s very own Ray Spencer MBE, who has played Dotty’s son Tommy for the last 37 years.
But there’s no rest for the wicked (or the thoroughly dotty) as this show, which kicks off on November 29, will be the venue’s longest run to date.
Bob, 66 a grandfather of 4 and a great grandfather of 2, is donning the greasepaint for the last time to spend more time with his family.
He said: “I’m really looking forward to this year’s panto, and since it’s my last one we’re going to make sure I go out with a bang.
“Being part of the panto is always fun, but it’s a lot of hard work as well, and this year we’re doing 78 shows.
“For that whole time you have to be completely dedicated to your character and believe that you are them.
“There are days you do three shows but the audience should always feel like they’re in the only show of the day.
“What’s brilliant about panto is that we’re all a big family and the audience becomes part of that, as we all celebrate Christmas together.
“I’m going to miss Dotty, all the gang and most of all our wonderful audience. But this time next year I can sit amongst them and enjoy the show from a whole new perspective.”
Ray and Bob have developed their own unique brand of comedy over the last four decades, which has audience coming back for more, smashing record after record. Last year Aladdin brought in almost 27,000 people and this year’s show could reach new heights.
More than 15,000 tickets have already been snapped up by eager panto fans.
The Customs House Executive Director Ray Spencer, who will play Tommy, said: “This year promises the same old formula but there’s going to be a few new things in there as well, and for the first time we’re going to have a pre-recorded animation which will see me and Bob under the sea.
“With almost half of this year’s tickets sold, if you want to see for yourself and Bob’s last panto, you’ll have to get your tickets fast!
“I’m really sorry it’s his last show and I think I might get quite emotional when the final curtain goes down.
“I’ve worked with a lot of Dames in my life and Bob is without a doubt the best one.
“He’s been my mother for 37 years and it’s going to be hard to see him go - there truly is nothing like this dame!”
As well as Bob and Ray there will be plenty of familiar faces treading the Theatre’s boards.
Steven Lee Hamilton can’t wait to step into Dick Whittington’s boots.
He said: “Dick Whittington is one of my favourite pantos and it’s one of the more traditional ones but it’s going to be a true Customs House panto, with all the usual family fun and side-splitting gags.
“We’re definitely going to make sure Dame Dotty gets the send-off she deserves – it’s the end of an era.”
After shining in Aladdin and Puss in Boots, Alice Stokoe will be returning to the stage as Alice Fitzwarren.
And Panto regulars Peter Darrant and Graham Overton make welcome returns as the evil King Rat and Alderman Fitzwarren.
Designer Paul Shriek will once again sprinkle some magic over his creative set and costume designs following last year’s huge success.
Dick Whittington, sponsored by Hays Travel, runs from Thursday, November 29 to Sunday, January 6.
Tickets start from £8 and are available from the Box Office on 0191 454 1234 or by visiting customshouse.co.uk
All ticket prices include a £1 contribution. Find out more
Hiya Kids (AND MUMS AND DADS!)
This year I have teamed up with The Customs House to offer you a great gift idea.
For just £19.99 you can join ‘Tommy’s Gang’ and get 2 for 1 on all cinema tickets for a full year.
You will also receive an exclusive Tommy mug, offers on great theatre shows and if that’s not enough
you’ll get a special email birthday card from me on your big day.
The Green Room Bar & Bistro at The Customs House
If you are looking for a spacious, comfortable environment to relax with a glass of wine before a performance or you want a bite to eat and a catch up cappuccino with friends our Green Room Bar & Bistro provides the perfect setting.
The menu changes on a weekly basis and our catering team uses only the best, locally produce ingredience available.
A new addition to The Green Room is Riverview, a private dining room which can host 22 people. Overlooking the Tyne, Riverview offers a great setting to celebrate an intimate birthday dinner, corporate lunch or private function.
We are proud of our great food and excellent atmosphere, but don’t take our word for it please visit us soon!
Two Courses £11.45 / Three Courses £14.95
To make a reservation please call 0191 427 3737
The Green Room Opening Times
Everyday: 11.00am - late
Hot & Cold Lunches
Monday - Saturday: 12.00pm - 2.00pm
Sunday: 12.00pm - 3.00pm
Early Bird Menu
Wednesday - Saturday: 5.00pm - 7.00pm
Prior booking is recommended!