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It's panto season...oh yes it is 07.01.08

PANTO season is fast approaching in Buncrana with rehearsals well underway for this year's eagerly-awaited production.
Audiences will be treated to an enduring favourite, Sleeping Beauty, when the curtain goes up on January 20.
For the first time, veteran panto producer Neil Doherty will not be at the helm. He has entrusted this year's production jointly to his brother Willie and local children's drama coach, Patricia Tinney.
A scene from the 2005 production of Cinderella in Buncrana. Photo by Barry Stevenson. "Neil has been on hand with plenty of advice and help," explained Willie, who said there was an abundance of enthusiasm and energy among this year's cast. "We have a cast of around 50 to 60 and everyone has been working very hard on it." Sleeping Beauty was last performed by the Buncrana Pantomime Society 26 years ago. The co-producers recently had fun searching the town for the original Sleeping Beauty set from 1982.
"Some of it was found in the old Faulet factory and other parts
were in storage under the Oratory," explained Willie.
And local artist Terry Tedstone has been lending his skills and talents again this year to create some new backdrops.
Meanwhile, for the first time in Buncrana panto history, the leading man will actually be played by a man.
Sleeping Beauty will be played by Maureen Loughrey while the ever-popular Dames will be brought to life by Eunan McConnell and Eddie Murphy.
The pantomime, to be staged as usual in St. Mary's Hall, will run for nearly three weeks, until Saturday, February 9.
Bookings for all performances including matinees are being taken from Saturday, January 12 and daily from Monday to Friday from 12noon to 2pm and 5pm to 7pm. Evening performances start at 8pm sharp and matinees at 3pm sharp. There will be no evening performances on Fridays and Sundays. Tickets must be collected within three working days. Doors open one hour before curtain up. Admission: matinee, children 5, adults 10. Evening performances, stalls 10, balcony 15. To book telephone: 086 2072496 or 086 2072497.
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