A WARWICK theatre company is celebrating ten years of bringing pantomimes to the town by creating its own quirky take on a well-known tale.
The Bridge House Theatre first hosted OFTM’s production of Puss in Boots in 2002 after the as-yet unformed company stepped in at the last minute to fill the gap created when the planned pantomime was suddenly cancelled.
OFTM was born and - with very little time - the quickly put-together team produced their first Christmas show, which subsequently enjoyed rave reviews.
The company, led by Warwick actor Adam Schumacher, have been performing at the venue in Myton Road every year since then - and for 2012, to celebrate a decade of success, are bringing back Puss in what they are describing as a “rather special” way - with plenty of surprises.
Adam, who has been acting as the Dame in every production since that first show in 2002 and writing the script for all the shows, said: “I had this crazy idea to try to create a ‘Doctor Who’-type special, where Puss has to meet every villain we’d ever fought over the past ten years.
“Of course, this was a wild notion because in order for it to be perfect, I would have to get hold of every actor who had been in every show. Some of them live in London, work in France or have generally lost touch.”
But – after persevering through strings of emails, phone calls and Facebook messages, Adam realised his dream. Impressively, every single actor who had been a villain in an OTFM replied - and they all were happy to clear their diaries for the occasion.
The hardest person to track down was the original Puss, Becky Sweeney, who had, until recently, been working for Barefoot Productions and French holiday company Siblu, which took her dancing and choreographing in Egypt and all over France.
But, having just moved back to London when Adam got in touch, she agreed to launch OFTM’s special production by donning her old boots for a photo shoot with current Puss, Amy Wood.
Those wondering whether Puss will meet her former self in this year’s anniversary production will have to go along to a show to find out.
Performances run from Thursday until January 1 at the Bridge House Theatre. To find out show times and book tickets, call 776438 or go online.