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Goldilocks and the Three Bears - the London Palladium's 2019 pantomime

Preview by Lizzie Guilfoyle

QDOS Entertainment have announced that Paul O’Grady will return to the London Palladium to play The Evil Ringmaster in Goldilocks and the Three Bears, which runs for a strictly limited season from December 7, 2019 to January 12, 2020.

Joining O’Grady and making his Palladium Panto debut will be Matt Baker as Joey the Clown. He will star alongside season regulars Julian Clary as The Ringmaster, Paul Zerdin as Silly Billy, Nigel Havers as Daddy Bear and Gary Wilmot as Dame Betty Barnum.

Joining the cast will also be a series of speciality acts including internationally renowned illusionist Phil Hitchcock; The Skating Medini (Asia and Dylan Medini) – a dynamic high-speed roller-skating act from one of Italy’s oldest circus families; Sascha Williams – ‘Rola Bola’, from the Belli Family Circus in Germany; and Europe’s youngest stunt rider Peter Pavlov and the ‘Globe of Speed’.

Final casting will be announced at a later date.

Dame Betty Barnum and her daughter Goldilocks’ circus is under threat from an evil rival circus owner and, with the help of their madcap circus friends, they’re battling to rescue their Big Top from ruin. Will they succeed? All seems lost, until three brilliant bears join the gang…

Best known as host of BBC Radio 2’s The Paul O’Grady Show and for helping rescue dogs in For the Love of Dogs – not to mention his acid-tongued creation Lily Savage – Paul O’Grady is returning to the London Palladium following his performance as The Wicked Stepmother in Cinderella, which reintroduced pantomime to the iconic venue in 2016.

Matt Baker (pictured below), who will be making his Palladium Panto debut, is best known on television as a presenter of The One Show and Countryfile on BBC1. Previously he presented Blue Peter and was a finalist on Strictly Come Dancing. He has been seen on stage as Caractacus Potts in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.

Julian Clary returns to the London Palladium for the fourth year having previously played The Man in the Mirror in last year’s Snow White at the London Palladium, The Spirit of the Bells in Dick Whittington and Dandini in Cinderella.

Ventriloquist Paul Zerdin has previously appeared at the Palladium as Muddles in last year’s Snow White at the London Palladium, Idle Jack in Dick Whittington and as Buttons in Cinderella.

Matt Baker

Nigel Havers played The Understudy in the 2019 production of Snow White at the London Palladium, Captain Nigel in Dick Whittington and Lord Chamberlain in Cinderella, all at the London Palladium.

Gary Wilmot played Mrs Crumble in last year’s Palladium pantomime Snow White at the London Palladium and was also seem in the previous year’s Dick Whittington.

Goldilocks and the Three Bears will be directed by Michael Harrison, with choreography by Karen Bruce, set design by Ian Westbrook, costume design by Hugh Durrant, visual special effects by The Twins FX, lighting by Ben Cracknell, sound design by Gareth Owen and original music by Gary Hind.

Goldilocks and the Three Bears is produced by Nick Thomas and Michael Harrison for Qdos Entertainment. Nick Thomas is the founder and Chairman of Qdos Entertainment Group, one of the largest entertainment companies in Europe and is the UK’s second largest regional theatre and concert hall operator.

Michael Harrison has previously produced over 100 pantomimes for Qdos Entertainment where he is also Managing Director. As a producer in the West End his credits include the imminent production of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat at the London Palladium, Gypsy, The Bodyguard, Annie and Mel Brooks’ Young Frankenstein.

Public booking opens on Friday, May 31, 2019.