Christmas wouldn’t be Christmas in Hull without the Middle Child panto, and in 2020 the popular festive show is getting an animated makeover.
The show will be free to watch on YouTube from Saturday 19 December to Thursday 31 December.
A radio version will also be broadcast on BBC Radio Humberside.
Pattie Breadcake: Into the Pantoverse will see Hull’s favourite dame, Pattie Breadcake, magicked into an animated version of the city, where she must help four princesses retell their stories for a contemporary audience.
With coronavirus restrictions closing theatres this Christmas, Middle Child have embraced the growing appetite for digital content and turned to local animators, My Pockets, to bring a show inspired by panto to life online.
Artistic director, Paul Smith, said: “Christmas at Middle Child is all about panto, which for us is what all theatre should be: totally devoted to its audience, woven into the fabric of local communities and able to transport us into a world of magic and wonder.
“The very nature of panto – live, loud and in the audience’s faces – makes it difficult for us to realise this year though, under the current coronavirus restrictions.
“That’s why we’ve dived into the digital world to work with a brilliant animation company, My Pockets, to capture the spirit of our panto and share it for free with a family audience.”
Peter Snelling, of My Pockets, said: “We are thrilled to be part of Middle Child’s 2020 Christmas show. When we first moved to Hull we used to sneak into the Middle Child rehearsal space in Darley’s Youth Club when working with young people there.
“We liked all the posters on the wall, the quotes and the books on the shelves, and thought, who are these guys? Since then we have become big fans and love the way they put theatre in places that it doesn’t normally go, to be seen by people who don’t normally watch.”
The show is a collaboration between five writers, including debut commissions for two who have come through Middle Child’s artist development programme.
You can find out more about the show here.