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KATE Peters be­lieves pan­tomimes are the best way to plant theatre-loving seeds deep in the hearts and minds of the younger gen­er­a­tion. The lo­cal theatre all-rounder – she per­forms, pro­duces,

writes and di­rects – and Gold Coast Bul­letin theatre colum­nist says pan­tos of­fer chil­dren the chance to be part of the show.

‘‘It’s very hands on and in­ter­ac­tive – I want them to yell out and to boo the vil­lain and cheer the hero,’’ she says.

‘‘If the kids have fun they are more likely to come back later in life. I feel very strongly about start­ing kids off on the right foot at theatre and it’s good fun.’’

Snow White and The Seven Dwarfs – which opened yes­ter­day in Spot­light’s Base­ment Theatre – is the 11th Peters has staged on the Coast.

While the pro­duc­tion of the Grimm fairy­tale stays true to the orig­i­nal sto­ry­line, Peters used artis­tic li­cence (in true panto tra­di­tion) to write in lo­cal ref­er­ences with a sound­track of mod­ern songs by artists such as Bey­once, Pink, Michael Jack­son and One Di­rec­tion.

‘‘There are ref­er­ences to the cruise­ship and light rail – you have to throw some­thing in to keep the par­ents en­ter­tained,’’ she says.

‘‘It’s a whole dif­fer­ent ex­pe­ri­ence tak­ing your child to theatre than it is sit­ting down and watch­ing TV with them.

‘‘It’s a pretty spe­cial thing for par­ents to sit down with their kids and look at a story com­ing to life be­fore them.’’

Snow White and The Seven Dwarfs stars My­ora Kruger as Snow White, Dominic Bradley as Prince Leopold, Ka­t­rina Lard­ner as The Wicked Queen, Martina French as Dame Whoop­sie, Nathan French as The Hunts­man, Francesca Spear as Duke Darcy and lo­cal ju­niors Matthew Spear, Jessica John­ston, Eryn Lard­ner, Amelie Golenko, Is­abella Kruger, Baden Kruger, Ri­ley Craig and Nikita Baz­zana.

‘‘The au­di­ence will see the sto­ry­book come alive. It’s all about fan­tasy and magic – that’s what we should be do­ing

Snow White and The Seven Dwarfs plays Spot­light’s Base­ment Theatre week­days at 10.30am and 1.30pm and Satur­days at 11am and 2pm un­til July 6. Tick­ets are $16.

Hol­i­day pup­pet shows, Page 30 – Pic­tures:

JERAD WIL­LIAMS for kids,’’ Peters says. ‘‘Th­ese days they are ex­pected to grow up quicker and the magic is miss­ing. ‘‘They should stay kids for a bit longer.’’ Peters says while mums and dads will en­joy the funny jokes, kids will love the fast-paced story.

‘‘Adults have the longer at­ten­tion span. Kids th­ese days are brought up on tele­vi­sion, which gives them an at­ten­tion span of about nine min­utes,’’ she says.

‘‘You have to en­gage them as much as you can with colour and move­ment. Ev­ery scene is very quick and there’s a song about ev­ery six or seven min­utes.

‘‘There’s lots of singing and danc­ing. You have to make it fast for the young ones so it never be­comes bor­ing.’’

Right: Cast mem­bers of school hol­i­day

panto Snow White & The Seven Dwarfs, star­ring My­ora Kruger as Snow

White and Ka­t­rina Lard­ner (pic­tured on cover) as The Wicked Queen.

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