Regular readers will be familiar with the Butlers – they often feature in my blog posts, videos or on my social media as Mich and I take the kids on regular days out during the school holidays. When I realised we weren’t going to be able to attend the Aladdin Circus Pantomime at Blackpool Tower last weekend, I offered Mich the opportunity to take the tickets and do the review for me so . . .
On Sunday we were really pleased to be asked by Colette to go to the Aladdin Circus Pantomime at Blackpool Tower, in place of the Burgess Family. Being in Blackpool it also meant that we could take Neil’s mum as she lives locally and hadn’t been to a pantomime for years. Panto is one of our favourite Christmas traditions and the kids were a bit disappointed that we hadn’t managed to book one this year. So, when they realised that we weren’t going to Blackpool just to visit grandma but to take her to a pantomime too they were excited to say the least. We have seen the Tower Circus a few years ago and all loved the resident clown, Mookie. We were therefore intrigued to see how they would incorporate this famous circus character into a more traditional pantomime show. (I’m quite a traditionalist when it comes to shows like this so I was hoping that it wouldn’t disappoint.)
When we arrived at the venue and collected our tickets we were surprised to see that there were no allocated seat numbers. When we entered the theatre it was a bit of a free for all and even though we were there more than 30 minutes before the start of the show we couldn’t find 5 seats together. After a bit of a moan to a member of staff they released 2 more rows which were previously reserved and we got seated ready for the show. The layout of the seats is great and no matter where you are sat you have a great view of the stage which is set into the floor in the centre.
Before the show there was lots of opportunity to buy flashing lights, flags and posters however we were quite pleased that our two didn’t really ask for anything.
The first half of the show was quite traditional with lots of boos, cheers, dancers and the traditional Aladdin story line. Erin loved the dancers and was impressed with some of the younger members of the troop who were probably not much older than her. Just before the interval they also made use of the amazing moving floor in the circus which slowly drops and allows the centre circle to fill with water. Aladdin and Princess Jasmine then floated on the water in a scene which replicated them flying on a magic carpet!
During the interval there were more opportunities to purchase souvenirs, sweets, drinks and ice creams and to also have them signed by Mookie and his best friend Mr Boo.
The second half of the show was much more circus themed and was incorporated into the pantomime by pretending that the acts were there to entertain the Emperor and Princess Jasmine. These acts were mainly the same as the ones which we saw a few years ago at the circus, but both Finn and Erin were still amazed by the acrobatics, dances and circus skills on show.
At one point Erin did ask when the pantomime was going to carry on so I think the link was a bit lost on her and she would have preferred a heavier weighting on the Aladdin story rather than the circus. The show ended with a twist on a traditional song, The 12 days of Christmas. This is always one of my favourite parts of a pantomime and they didn’t disappoint! There were ‘rude’ lines (which Finley thought were hilarious), water guns and hysteria and the cast fell over trying to get faster with the song and routines. All in all a perfect way to end the show and send you off with a smile on your face.
After the show I was interested to see what Finn and Erin thought and if they had preferred it to our more usual Christmas pantomime. They were quite unanimous in their opinion that it was really good and made a nice change to the shows we have seen in recent years. Finn also commented that he’d love to come back with his cousins who he would usually spend panto day with.
For me I think I’m still more of a traditional pantomime goer but if you have never been to Blackpool Tower Circus then the Circus Pantomime is definitely worth a visit and it means you kind of get 2 shows for the price of one.
*We were invited to attend the Blackpool Tower Circus Pantomime free of charge for the purpose of review however all thoughts and opinions remain our own – or those of the Butlers in this case!*