THE cast of the Kings Theatre’s pantomime Cinderella took to the ice for a magical meeting of the country’s favourite form of festive entertainment.
With this year’s winter showpiece panto set to begin on Tuesday, the stars limbered up on the ice rink in Guildhall Square on Thursday evening. They were making the most of their free time before they embark on a gruelling schedule of 50 shows in less than a month.
In full theatre attire while battling treacherous weather conditions as the rain battered the rink, the cast manfully – and cheerfully – continued full steam ahead as they glided around the ice. Well, some of them anyway.
Dancing on Ice winner and X Factor luminary Jake Quickenden zipped around the rink like he would give Torvill and Dean a run for their money. He was joined by West End star Natasha Barnes, Kings Theatre legend Jack Edwards and former Hollyoaks star and fellow Kings Theatre favourite Marcus Patrick, who grew up in Gosport.
Speaking to The News, Jake said: ‘I love ice skating. I won Dancing on Ice earlier this year which really helped my ice skating – which I only learnt how to do a year ago.
‘I did fall over and rip my trousers, though, so I don’t think the costume designer will not be happy with me. It was tough trying to skate with the rain coming down like that.’
Speaking of his excitement at the Cinderella show, he added: ‘I did pantomime last year for the first time and was offered the chance to do it again this year which I’m really looking forward to here in Portsmouth.
‘There’s a great bunch of actors here and we all get on really well. We’ve only had a week to prepare but so far everything has gone really well.’
Marcus said he struggled on the ice but is looking forward to returning to his home theatre. ‘I wasn’t very elegant on the ice and went over a few times – taking Jake down with me. It was a good laugh,’ he said.
‘I’m really looking forward to the pantomime and always enjoy coming back to the Kings Theatre – it’s my favourite in the country.
‘As someone who grew up in Gosport it means a lot and feels like I am coming home. It’s good for me as well because I will all my family coming to see me.’