And last week, Lauder Public Hall hosted the most magical of them all, the rags to riches tale of Cinderella.
David Tristram’s Cinders the True Story was brought to life by the marvellous Lauder Amateur Dramatic Society, under the accomplished direction of esteemed producer Margot Douglas, who also made a brief appearance as Mrs Claus.
We attended the Saturday matinee, which was sold out almost as soon as it was announced. The kids loved it … with free sweets being thrown around willy-nilly.
We're told the evening performances were rather more risque, but the cast successfully managed to rein in most of the double-entendres for the young ‘uns, who lapped it all up.
If you like a bit of audience participation in your panto, there was plenty of it, with everyone singing along to songs such as Love is All Around by Wet Wet Wet and other top tunes.
There were lots of chances to argue with the cast (Oh no there weren’t) and there were several things which were behind people, allowing kids (and adults) the chance to tell them how silly they were being.
Stealing the show were the marvellous Ugly Sisters, Potty and Dotty, played by Roddie MacLeod and Jeremy Fraser.
These characters always present a bit of a conundrum … they are awful to their step-sister, and therefore should be booed, but they were also so likeable in their chaos.
However, the brilliant Baroness, Anne McKinven gave plenty of reason for booing. In a performance akin to Michelle Gomez's villain Missy in Doctor Who, her cackles and pouts kept the story fair buzzing along. Other performances of note came from Bill Mason’s hilarious Hairy Godmother, Gail Millar’s sweet Cinderella, Karen Nelson’s put-upon Prince Charming and Jackie Selcraig’s unlucky-in-love Buttons.
Alison Mason’s helpful Dandini and Stuart Watkins' miserable Baron make up the rest of the cast, with Steve Aitchison, Alexa Lewis and Jake Mirley filling in well where required.
There was also an uncredited appearance from a pantomime cow, who had humorously turned up to the wrong show.
All in all, a superb afternoon out.