We’re still in the UK, but will be back in a couple of days. But here’s some news! Angela, who has always lived in the US, saw her first ever pantomime the other night, and what a hoot it was. For me (a Brit, living in America) panto was a wonderful part of my childhood. Pantomimes (or pantos) are ostensibly only for kids, but they’re such fun that lots of adults go as well — and there are usually jokes for the adults as well as jokes for the kids. Pantomime is a stage performance of a fairy tale — and it’s done in a campy style. The audience are “part of the performance” and are given lines and prompts, and are talked to and encouraged to shout out certain phrases at certain times. You can find out more about pantomime here.
For now, I’d love to share with you the character of the “pantomime dame.” In panto, the “dame” (who is usually a mother figure, or grandmother figure), is traditionally played by a man. This means that the dame is always played in a campy way. Dames are a delight, and below, you’ll get a flavor of what they’re all about. You can also find out more about panto dames here.