TICKET sales for the first in-house pantomime at the Kenton Theatre in Henley have exceeded all expectations.
Cinderella, which opens at the New Street theatre next Friday, has already sold out six of the 11 shows and the 500 tickets for the remaining five performances are selling fast.
Ed Simons, chairman of the theatre trustees, said he was “blown away” by the response to the 2,500 tickets put on sale.
He said: “I estimated that we would sell 1,200, which would still be 35 per cent more than any other panto that has been put on at the Kenton.
“We were hoping to break even, and even prepared for a small loss, but now it looks very much like we will make a profit. This success is all been down to the hard work of the trustees who have worked tirelessly to promote the panto.”
He said the trustees had dreamed of staging their own professional panto for some time and had a lucky break six months ago when a company that usually stages a Christmas show had to pull out, creating the opportunity.
Mr Simons said the appearance of Cinderella, played by actress Rochelle Parry, in a “glass” pumpkin carriage at the Henley Christmas Festival was an inspired marketing move which had brought the production to the public’s attention and boosted ticket sales. He said: “It was the star attraction of the festival.
There was a permanent queue of 40 to 50 families waiting to meet the princess throughout the night, even though it was freezing.”
Tickets are now being offered to firefighters, police officers and staff at Townlands Hospital at a discounted price as a thank-you for their service.
The pantomime runs daily until Saturday, December 29, with the exception of Christmas Day. For tickets, go to www.kentontheatre.co.uk or visit the box office, which is open from 11am to 3pm on weekdays and from 10am to 1pm on Saturdays (tel. 01491 575698).