Fee-fi-fo-fum, I smell a new version of Jack

(Left to right) Simon Snashall, Hayley Doherty and Iain Ridley in the Berry Theatre's production of Jack.

(Left to right) Simon Snashall, Hayley Doherty and Iain Ridley in the Berry Theatre's production of Jack.

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At five foot one inches tall, Hayley Doherty never thought she’d be playing a giant – but today she will be doing just that for The Berry Theatre’s Christmas show.

Hayley is one of the three professional actors taking to the stage for the Hedge End theatre’s Christmas production Jack, which runs until Christmas Eve.

She will be playing Gertrude, the Giant’s wife and will also be tackling the role of Jack’s mum in the family production, which is penned by award-winning children’s playwright Mike Kenny and directed by Owen Calvert-Lyons, Artist Director at The Berry Theatre.

Hayley is joined on stage by Simon Snashall as the Giant Garbold and Iain Ridley as Jack, who is also portrayed as a puppet.

Rehearsals for the production started in late November and Hayley says she has enjoyed her time in Hampshire.

‘At five foot one inches, I never thought I’d get to play a giant. But I’m looking forward to the challenge of playing two characters and switching quickly between the two.

‘The script is lovely and has much more truth and heart than most Christmas shows. I love helping to make Christmas magical.’

Simon Snashall is relishing the role of Garbold the Giant in the show and says he’s going to be a character the audience will love to hate.

‘He’s big, boisterous and bumbling and he’s the baddy that lives up a very big beanstalk. What’s not to like?

‘He’s a bit silly too, but I don’t reckon he’s all bad, he does at least love his chicken.’

Simon also says he is looking forward to working with Owen Calvert-Lyons and Iain Ridley again.

‘We did a version of Jules Verne’s Around the World in Eighty Days a couple of years ago and it was a truly magical show for all the family.

‘I’m also looking forward to working for the first time with Hayley Doherty who will play my wife.

‘I think it’s going to be a whole lot of fun for people aged four through to 94. Don’t miss it.’

Iain Ridley says he’s looking forward to telling an old tale in a new way.

‘Jack is an iconic role and I’m always interested in retelling classic stories to new audiences, who may know the story but who probably don’t expect the outcome we try to deliver.’

Tickets: £9-11, for times call 023 8065 2333 or visit theberrytheatre.co.uk

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