THE team behind this year's pantomime at Port Sunlight's Gladstone Theatre are 'beyond excited' to be back on stage after a very tough year for the arts.

Jack and the Beanstalk will be staged at the venue from Saturday December 11 to Friday, December 31.

Written by Fortina Stone, it follows Jack as he climbs the beanstalk to tackle the mean Giant and his evil side kick Fleshcreep to save Princess Jill.

Will Jack and Jill get their happily ever after? Wait and see.

The star-studded line up (pictured below) features Conor Barrie as Jack, X-Factor contestant Jessica Jones from Wallasey as Jill, Michael Bailey as Silly Scott, Cbeebies star Ryan Towart as Dame Trott, Hollyoaks star Darren John Langford as Fleshcreep, Kate Crossley as Fairy Virile and Roy Carruthers as Squire Peg.

Also appearing are children from Hoylake School Of Dance, Icon Dance Studio and children selected from an open dance audition from across Merseyside.

Wirral Globe:

Picture: Georgia Dillon

During a launch at the theatre earlier this week, the show's co-producer/director, Laura Newnes, told the Globe: "It's so exciting to be back and just have that buzz about the promotion of the panto. I think everybody's ready for it now.

"We've added a little bit of magic this year, we've got our amazing beanstalk. Part of the magic with our Gladstone Theatre shows is the fact that we have familiar faces coming back on stage.

"Everybody's had that long break, 18 months away from the theatre and the audience,  and are excited to see them their faces again. That familiarity is what brings them back.”

Co-producer/choreographer Jamie-Leigh Christian adds, “The cast and ensemble are magic. We have been so lucky and blessed to have such an amazing cast and ensemble that want to come back every year. We have professional dancers from worldwide returning to perform this Christmas. 

"They don't just perform on stage; they write the scripts and add their own ideas for costumes, make-up and props. 

"They are really enthusiastic and passionate about what they do. For us, the real magic starts in the rehearsal room when we all get back together."

Michael Bailey, who plays Jack's brother Silly Scott Trott, said: "We can't wait to be back, it's long overdue. It's given us a nice resurge of energy, so we're coming back with a fresh attitude, raring to go back out and entertain.

"There's a theme with all the characters I play - always got a get-rich-quick scheme and trying to better themselves. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't, as in life.

"He's the one who guides the audience through the story and it's his job to get the kids onside, the foil.

"We love perfoming at The Gladstone. There's always a lovely family atmosphere.

"It's really important to keep the medium of panto going, because for a lot of kids it's their first experience of seeing a live show and to think there's a whole generation of kids that have missed out on that over the last 18 months is sad to hear.

"So, to get out and see a family show over Christmas can only be a good thing."

Darren John Langford, who plays Fleshcreep, a character who is in league with the Giant, said: "My character's over-riding wont is to get the girl - he has his eye on the squire's daughter.

"He collects the taxes, steals cattle, leaves the land dry and has his eye on the Trott's cow, that he wants to sell at market. He's a briliant character to play."

A spokesperson for the Gladstone Theatre said: "We know we say it every year but the Port Sunlight Panto is proving to be bigger and better every Christmas and Merseyside based Dreamworld Entertainments are certainly a panto force to be reckoned with, renowned for bringing BIG shows to Port Sunlight and bringing traditional tales to life with their innovative, fresh and current twists.

Wirral Globe:

Picture: Georgia Dillon

"Dreamworld Entertainments are beyond excited to be back on their favourite stage at The Gladstone Theatre after a very tough year for the arts and theatrical industries.

"They will light up the stage this Christmas with what is set to be their biggest panto yet Jack and The Beanstalk, with all the usual comedy, magic, exceptional song and dance routines, spectacular costumes, a cow, a Beanstalk and of course a Giant.

"So what are you all waiting for? Get online or call The Gladstone Theatre Box Office and book your tickets for Christmas 2021 NOW!!"

Tickets are from the Box Office on: 0151 643 8757 or