THE Ugly Sisters from Lighthouse Poole’s production of Cinderella came away with a top award at the star-studded Pantomime Awards held in London’s West End.
Andrew Pollard and Alim Jadavji won Best Sisters at the event hosted by showbiz legend Christopher Biggins at the Trafalgar Theatre for their memorable performances as Nadine and Doris.
Cinderella, written and directed by CBeebies star Chris Jarvis, was also nominated as Best Panto but lost out to theatre giant Sir Ian McKellen in Mother Goose.
Lauren Azania’s performance as Cinderella’s Fairy Godmother earned her a nomination for the Carmen Silvera Award for Best Magical Being.
“What a night – the awards were every bit as fab as we hoped and our Ugly Sisters were crowned the best in the land,” said delighted Lighthouse chief executive Elspeth McBain.
“We’re so proud, not only of Andrew and Alim, who were brilliant, but also of Lauren whose Fairy was out of this world.
“And if our Cinderella is going to miss out on Best Panto, we’re only too happy to lose to Sir Ian McKellen.”
The UK Pantomime Association’s 64 judges visited more than 240 venues to see 700-plus performances across the United Kingdom.
Cinderella was nominated as Best Panto (500-900 seats) but the title went to Mother Goose at the Duke of York’s Theatre, starring Sir Ian McKellen who was also honoured with a special award in recognition of his ‘passionate advocacy and services to the artform of pantomime’.
Elspeth added: “As an independent regional producer, to be honoured by our peers is a real privilege and such a thrill. Huge congratulations and thanks to everyone involved in making Cinderella the most creatively successful pantomime that Lighthouse has enjoyed.
“And a special thanks to our special friend, Chris Jarvis, who is quite simply a panto genius. Not only did he write and direct Cinderella, he played Buttons brilliantly. And he’s already working hard to make Aladdin every bit as good, if not even better, for this year.
“We know how much our audiences love our family pantomimes and are truly grateful they keep coming back. It spurs us on to try even harder to bring them something special and we can’t wait to see what they make of Aladdin.”
Tickets are on sale now for Aladdin, which runs from Thursday, December 7, to Sunday, December 31, at www.lighthousepoole.co.uk.