Panto actors excited to perform on Bury St Edmunds stage

James Parkes and John de Ville, who are playing the ugly sisters in the Bury St Edmunds Theatre Royal's 2014 pantomime, Cinderella, in character ANL-141118-153253001
James Parkes and John de Ville, who are playing the ugly sisters in the Bury St Edmunds Theatre Royal's 2014 pantomime, Cinderella, in character ANL-141118-153253001
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Bury St Edmunds’ newest panto siblings are gearing up to bring plenty of laughs and capers to this year’s Theatre Royal production.

Actors John De Ville and James Parkes will play the infamous ugly sisters, named Lady G and Katy P, in the Theatre Royal’s modern production of panto classic Cinderella.

“I have never rehearsed in such a beautiful building, and the theatre is just gorgeous, one of the most beautiful in the country,” said John.

“Bury is ‘picture-postcard’ pretty, and it is nice to be in a place where people are genuinely friendly.”

James added: “When you get a beaufiul theatre it is such a nice change, often the settings are so unglamorous, and this theatre has a great reputation.”

Rehearsals began in the town’s Guildhall last Monday before opening night on November 28. So far over 19,000 tickets have been sold for the play’s six-week run.

James, originally from Middlesex, got involved in pantomimes four years ago while John, who hails from Tom Jones’ home town of Pontypridd in Wales, has performed in pantos since 1996.

James said: “It is a blessing to be involved with in-house pantos. When they are directed by the theatre I think the quality is amazing.”

“Here, we are all jobbing actors, and everyone is perfectly cast,” said John.

“The audience is also such a part of the performance, their interaction really feeds it.”

The pair have an obvious chemistry off the stage, which they hope to bring to their performance as siblings.

“We have a very similar sense of humour, so I expect there will be a lot of laughs on stage!” said John.