Norwich Theatre Royal and Norwich City Football Club are kicking off a brand-new partnership with a pledge to work even more closely together for the benefit of Norwich, Norfolk and the whole community.
It will begin with the Canaries becoming official partners of this year’s pantomime Cinderella, which takes to the Theatre Royal stage on December 17.
Norwich City and Norwich Theatre Royal are united by the same deep-rooted commitment to local communities through annual programmes of work with people of all ages and abilities through the Norwich City Community Sports Foundation and Theatre Royal’s extensive Learning & Participation programme.
Stephen Crocker, Norwich Theatre Royal chief executive, said: “As two organisations that are key players regionally and nationally in our respective industries, this will be a great chance to forge a fantastic and unique working relationship.
“It will begin over the coming pantomime period as we collaborate on a number of projects to encourage more people to come and experience the excitement of live theatre. We have many other projects in the pipeline as well.”
Ben Kensell, Chief Operating Officer at Norwich City, added: “We’re delighted to be partnering with the Norwich Theatre Royal. We both have a real commitment to supporting local communities. Our Community Sports Foundation already do an outstanding job within the county and this partnership will only help to extend our community efforts in the sports and arts areas.”
The cast for this year’s pantomime includes Great Yarmouth-born entertainer and actor Joe Tracini (Hollyoaks, Dengineers, Spamalot), actress-singer Amanda Henderson (Robyn in Casualty, the Les Misérables movie, Oliver! in the West End, internationally acclaimed actor-singer David Witts (Joey Branning in EastEnders, Fiyero in Wicked), and panto stalwart Richard Gauntlett, who returns to the Theatre Royal panto family for the 19th time as writer and director.
The Norwich Theatre Royal pantomime is a key part of the Christmas calendar with almost 60,000 people coming to see it last year. The pantomime provides a festive boost to the local economy as well as offering a host of additional activities around it including school events, workshops for young people, and the opportunity for students to do work experience backstage and front-of-house during the run.
And the partnership is set to grow in 2020. Stephen Crocker said: “Cinderella is just the first step in this exciting new relationship. We share with Norwich City a passion for our home city and creating memorable experiences for everyone that steps through our doors and pledge to make this a Premier League partnership for both of us.”