Latest news / 12 March, 2018


Following last year’s record-breaking pantomime run which saw over 60,000 festive theatregoers through its doors, New Theatre Cardiff have announced that television star Lisa Riley, local sporting legend Gareth Thomas and hilarious comic Mike Doyle are to star in this year’s spellbinding family pantomime, Beauty and the Beast from Saturday 8 December.

Actress, presenter, panellist and author Lisa Riley is best known for her role as Mandy Dingle in ITV1’s soap Emmerdale, a part she played for six years. Since leaving the programme Lisa has risen to fame by appearing on Strictly Come Dancing, and had roles in Fat Friends, Waterloo Road and Holby City. Later this year she will appear in a new BBC drama called Age Before Beauty. Known and loved for her personality and honesty, Lisa is a popular panellist on Loose Women and has recently released her new book, The Honesty Diet.

Following his performance as the Wicked Queen’s Henchman last year, Gareth ‘Alfie’ Thomas returns to the New Theatre pantomime for a fourth season. The Bridgend-born rugby player is one of the most iconic and respected figures in the sporting world, having played professional rugby for Wales and is one of the most capped Welsh rugby union players in history. Since retiring he has gone on to forge a career in commentating for Sky Sports, has appeared on reality shows including Celebrity Big Brother and Dancing on Ice and fronted documentaries for the BBC.

Making his sixth consecutive Cardiff appearance, the city’s best-loved dame Mike Doyle will join them as Betty Blumenthal. The British Comedy Award winner, singer, comedian and cabaret star has become a popular fixture of the annual New Theatre pantomime thanks to his quick wit, outrageous costumes and audience interaction.

This year’s unmissable family show will be packed with all of the ingredients New Theatre audiences have come to expect from the cities’ biggest pantomime; lots of laughter, stunning costumes and sets, and quality entertainment for all ages, brought magically to life by Qdos Entertainment, the world’s biggest pantomime producer and the team behind the theatre’s annual pantomime.

Beauty and the Beast’s Executive Producer Jonathan Kiley said: “We’re very much looking forward to bringing the magic of Beauty and the Beast to Cardiff this year, and to have the wonderful Lisa, Gareth and Mike leading our cast we know this year’s production will be a must-see show.”

Dreaming of a happier life, the beautiful Belle finds herself transported to a spell-bound castle held captive by a hideous beast and the magical characters placed under a spell by an evil enchantress. Can Belle see beyond the monster and fall in love with her captor before the last petal falls from the enchanted rose, or will the Beast’s selfishness cost him the world he once knew and the hand of the girl that has melted his heart? In a production packed full of sensational special effects, beautiful costumes, music, comedy, dancing and audience participation, Cardiff audiences should book their tickets now for this year’s spell-binding pantomime.