The award-winning Mercury panto is back and this year we’ll be journeying to distant shores with Aladdin!
Once again our panto chorus will take centre stage, and this is the chance for any budding young stage stars to audition. Our panto chorus are on stage for all of the big show-stopping numbers, taking part in lots of singing and dancing and they will play a variety of roles.
Auditionees must be aged between 12 and 17 and strong vocal and movement skills are a must. As a thank you, parents will be given two complimentary tickets to come and see the show!
Auditions will take place at Mercury Theatre on Saturday 17 July. Audition slots will be filled on a first come, first served basis.
Audition day schedule:
- 12.50pm – Registration for Group 1
- 1pm-2pm – Group 1 Audition
- 1.50pm – Registration for Group 2
- 2pm-3pm – Group 2 Audition
- 2.50pm – Registration for Group 3
- 3pm-4pm – Group 3 Audition
- 3.50pm – Registration for Group 4
- 4pm-5pm – Group 4 Audition
Before signing up to audition parents/guardians must ensure that their young person can commit to the following rehearsal schedule and be available for all performances (the panto chorus will be split into two teams and will alternate and do half of the performances each).
- Wednesday 11 & Wednesday 18 August – 1 hour time slots between 10am-4pm each day – Costume Fittings
- Monday 1 to Friday 5 November – 4.30pm-7pm – Rehearsals Week 1
- Saturday 6 November – 10am-5pm – Rehearsal Week 1
- Monday 8 to Friday 12 November – 4.30pm-7pm – Rehearsals Week 2
- Saturday 13 November – 10am-5pm – Rehearsal Week 2
- Monday 15 & Tuesday 16 November – 4.30pm-7pm – Rehearsals Week 3
- Wednesday 17 & Thursday 18 November – 4.30pm-8.30pm – Rehearsals Week 3
- Friday 19 November – 4.30pm-7pm – Rehearsals Week 3
- Saturday 20 November – 10am-5pm – Rehearsal Week 3
- Tuesday 23 to Thursday 25 November – 6pm-10pm – Production Week
- Friday 26 & Saturday 27 November – 10am-10pm – Production Week / 1st performances
- Tuesday 30 November – 4pm-7pm – Rehearsal Day
- Wednesday 1 December to Sunday 16 January (including Christmas Eve, Boxing Day, New Year’s Eve & New Year’s Day) – Various times (see the Aladdin page) – Performances
Offers of a place on one of the two Panto Chorus teams will be made by telephone call by the 24 July 2021. Unsuccessful auditionees will be contacted by email.
To sign up to audition please fill in our form at the link belowPanto Chorus Audition Form
How are the children selected and what happens next?
On the audition day your young person will be asked to sing and dance in front of our creative panel that will include the director, choreographer and musical director. Successful auditionees will be contacted by telephone by 24 July 2021. The two teams of young people will then be chosen to perform on an alternate basis, but will be required to rehearse together throughout. In order for the young people to perform in our pantomime we are required by law to obtain a license from Essex County Council, so along with a confirmation letter, all successful auditionees will receive a pack of licensing forms they must complete. This will include school permission, a Doctor’s note, passport photo and proof of ID. It sounds like a lot but we will always provide a checklist of everything you need and are happy to help with any queries you may have along the way.
When will rehearsals start and how does the schedule work?
Rehearsals commence as of Monday 1 November and your child will need to be available for all rehearsals. Typically, the panto chorus will be called for rehearsals after school every day Monday-Friday from 4.30pm-7pm and on Saturdays from 10am-5pm. As we get closer to “production week” (the week the show opens), the call times will change to accommodate final run-throughs, dance calls and technical rehearsals on staff. These rehearsals will take place during school time. Attendance is compulsory throughout and it is essential that any other engagements you have over the festive period are considered prior to committing to the audition process as it is a professional production and absence from the show cannot be guaranteed.
How much time will my young person need to take off school?
As part of the licensing agreement, your young person will need to get permission for absence from school. Some schools can have concerns about this as it affects their overall attendance, or can clash with exams or school productions that are taking place at the time. Typically over the run the panto chorus will be expected for approximately three whole days during production week and approximately 11 half days for either morning or afternoon shows or run-throughs. The same absence is requested of all children involved. Attendance is essential during production week from Tuesday 23 – Friday 26 November for safety reasons, as all of the technical elements of the show come together on stage.
When do performances start and how does the schedule work?
Performances start on Saturday 27 November and your young person will need to be available for all shows from Saturday 27 November 2021 – Sunday 16 January 2022. The children will perform in their teams on an alternate basis and a performance rota will be produced in advance. Please be aware it is difficult for us to accommodate other engagements. Your young person may be asked to understudy for another young person.
How will my young person be looked after?
The panto chorus will be supervised by licensed chaperones. They will be signed in and out for each session and we ask for parent/guardian assistance when collecting your young person after rehearsals and performances as we do not allow them to leave the premises unsupervised. We appreciate what a big commitment the pantomime is for the parents just as much as the young people and will do our best to stick to scheduled times and dates. If your young person is unwell, you will be asked to come to the theatre to collect them.
If you have any further questions please email email@example.com.