Dick Whittington and his Cat - New Wolsey Theatre

Dick Whittington and his Cat

Performed from Thu 23 Nov — Sat 20 Jan


Warehouse Digital

Warehouse Digital

Warehouse Digital

Warehouse Digital

Warehouse Digital

The image shows the silhouette of a young man with a guitar strapped to his back walking away from us towards a fluorescent line-drawing of the London skyline. The silhouette of his cat joining him is beside him. A glow and sparks of musical notes come from the city towards us. The white New Wolsey logo is in the top-left corner. A large gold and white title reads 'Dick Whittington and his Cat' with the additional words 'Written by Vikki Stone' and 'The Rock 'n' Roll panto' elsewhere on the image.

A new version of the classic family-favourite show, written by award-winning comedian, writer and composer, Vikki Stone!

Join our brave hero, Dick Whittington, on his journey to London to seek his fame and fortune in this year’s ultimate Rock ‘n’ Roll pantomime!

Can he outwit the evil King Rat, free the city from his team of revolting rodents and win the hand of the one he loves?

Find out in this festive show packed full of live music, crazy characters, hilarious happenings and awesome adventure, with a purr-fect amount of feline flavour thrown in for good measure.


Late-night shows (9pm starts) have an age guidance of 16+.

Presented by the New Wolsey Theatre.

Rehearsal photography by Will Green Photography.

Production photography by Mike Kwasniak.


Cast & Creatives

Olivia Bennett — Delivery Person & Mr Binhead

Olivia Bennett's headshot.

Olivia is an Actor/Musician from Essex, who trained at both the Italia Conti Academy and Laine Theatre Arts - with further training at the Actors Studio: Pinewood Studios.

Credits include: Song Of The Summer (Royal and Derngate) and The City Walks On Water.

TV Credits include: The Devil’s Hour (Amazon Prime); Doctor Who (BBC); Match Masters (Commercial) with Robbie Williams.

Olivia is thrilled to be part of Dick Whittington and would like to thank all of those who have continuously showed support on her journey!

Jordan Eskeisa — Delivery Person, Rat Henchperson & Referee

Jordan Eskeisa's headshot.

Jordan is a 2023 graduate from PPA in Guildford where he trained in Musical Theatre. He is thrilled to be making his professional debut at the New Wolsey Theatre this Christmas. Credits whilst training include: Mark in Rent; Parsee Man in Just So; Lurch in The Addams Family.

He would like to thank his family, agents and friends for their continued support, and can't wait to bring some actor-musician panto magic to you all this Christmas.

Max Kinder — Sarah

Max Kinder's headshop

Max trained professionally on the Foundation Course at Guildford School of Acting, and later at Rose Bruford College, graduating from BA Acting in 2021.

Max has developed a broad range of stage productions ranging from A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Greenwich Theatre) to Alice Birch’s [BLANK] (Rose Bruford). They developed their comedy chops at the Canal Café Theatre’s NewsRevue and helped originate the roles of Duke of Buckingham in The New Musketeers (Trinity Theatre) and Alex in Dal Segno (Theatre in the Tabard). They’ve also toured Austria with Vienna English Theatre’s The Show Must Go On and worked as the Musical Director for Whilst We Were There, a new musical developed at the Edinburgh Fringe.

When they’re not working, Max can be found with a good book and copious mugs of tea or playing an illustrious game of Dungeons and Dragons with their mates.

Janna May — Fairy & Pirate

Janna May's headshot

Janna May is very excited to be playing the role of Fairy/Pirate in Dick Whittington and his Cat, which is her first professional Actor Musician show. She trained at Guildford School of Acting where she did the Actor Musician course and she enjoys playing her instruments, singing to her heart's content and writing songs in her spare time.

Other credits: The Museum of Marvellous Things (UK Tour) and Scandalgate (workshop).

Eloise Richardson — Delivery Person, Giant Rat & Rat Henchperson

Eloise Richardson's headshot.

Eloise is a recent graduate from Rose Bruford College where she has been training in Actor-Musicianship for the last three years. During training, her credits include Alexander Ashbrook in Coram Boy and Mrs Mayor in Seussical The Musical.

 

Growing up in Suffolk, the New Wolsey’s Rock ‘n’ Roll panto was the first place she ever watched Actor-Musicianship and she is super excited for it to be the place of her professional debut.

Myles Miller — The Cat

Myles Miller's headshot.

Myles trained at Mountview Academy of Performing Arts, graduating in 2021 with a BA (Hons) Performance in Actor Musicianship.

Professional credits include: Alice In Wonderland (Liverpool Everyman Playhouse); Beautiful The Carole King Musical (Curve and UK Tour); Beauty and The Beast (Nottingham Playhouse).

Roles in training include: Return to the Forbidden Planet; Coram Boy; A Christmas Carol.

Elizabeth Rowe — Alice

Elizabeth Rowe Headshot

Elizabeth trained at Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts on the Actor-Musicianship course. She is delighted to be returning to The New Wolsey Pantomime.

Her credits include: Mighty Woman (Workshop for JAS Theatricals at Wonderville Theatre, Haymarket); Goldilocks and the Three Bears (New Wolsey Theatre, Ipswich); Zelda (Workshop for Creative Rights International at The Umbrella Rooms, Shaftesbury Avenue); Dick Whittington (Yvonne Arnaud, Guildford); Pauline in One Man, Two Guvnors (Nuffield Theatre, Southampton); Nancy in Oliver! With a Twist (Leicester Square Theatre); Artful Dodger in Oliver! With a Twist (Underbelly Cowbarn, Edinburgh); Jill in Jack and the Beanstalk (Queen’s Theatre, Hornchurch); Helen in Fat Busters, the Musical (Workshop with The Park Theatre, Finsbury); Nell Gywn in Pretty, Whitty Nell (Workshop with Rogue Shakespeare Company at Etcetera Theatre, Camden); Sinbad (New Wolsey, Ipswich); Made in Dagenham (Queen’s Theatre, Hornchurch/New Wolsey, Ipswich); Jane Eyre (Jackson Lane Theatre); Joan in Touched (Bernie Grant Arts Centre, London); Jacques Brel is Alive and Well and Living in Paris (Karamel Club, London).

Elizabeth can also be seen performing with UK Fleetwood Mac as Christine McVie.

Steve Simmonds — King Rat

Steve Simmonds headshot

Theatre includes: Rewind/Record in Alice in Wonderland (Liverpool Playhouse/Plymouth Theatre Royal); James/Mr Burney in The Invincibles (Queen’s Theatre/New Wolsey); Operation Julie (Theatr na nog); George Mole in Adrian Mole (Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch); Belinda Bigtop in Goldilocks (New Wolsey Theatre); Samuel Byck in Assassins (Watermill Theatre/Nottingham Playhouse); Grandma in Grandma Saves the Day, The Snow Queen, Cinderella, Guys And Dolls, Aladdin, Never Lost at Home (New Wolsey Theatre, Ipswich); As You Like It Workshop (National Theatre); The Threepenny Opera (Bolton Octagon); The Lady in the Van (Theatre Royal Bath); The Who's Tommy (New Wolsey Theatre/Ramps on the Moon); Made in Dagenham (Queen's Theatre, Hornchurch/New Wolsey Theatre); Return to the Forbidden Planet 25th Anniversary Tour (Forbidden Planet Musicals, directed by Bob Carlton); 20th Century Boy, The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui (West End/Chichester Festival Theatre); The Buddy Holly Story (Buddy Musical Productions); Aladdin and Cinderella (Stafford Gatehouse); Lend Me a Tenor, A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, 12th Night, The Servant of Two Masters, Gaslight, Bouncers, It's a Fine Life (Queen's Theatre, Hornchurch); The Comedy Of Babi Babbett, Noah Babel's Ark (Rude Mechanicals); Mack and Mabel (West End – Adam Kenwright/Watermill); Pinafore Swing (Watermill/No.1 Tour).

TV includes: Love Soup (BBC) and, prior to training, he played Stitch in Oliver!, directed by Sam Mendes at the London Palladium.

Luke Thornton — Dick Whittington

Luke Thornton's headshot.

Luke trained as an Actor Musician at Rose Bruford College. His many varied instrument skills include: drums, bass, guitar and harmonica.

He is delighted to be returning to the New Wolsey Theatre and joining the cast of Dick Whittington.

Stage credits include: Romeo in Romeo & Juliet (440 Theatre UK Tour), Stanley in Brief Encounter (New Wolsey Theatre & UK Tour), Bobo the Clown in Goldilocks (New Wolsey Theatre), Demetrius in A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Scoot Theatre UK Tour), Nigel in The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole the Musical (Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch), Steven/Tony Sharpe in Love Letters (Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch), One-Eye in Weapons of the Weak (The Other Palace), Cheever in The Crucible (Pitlochry Festival Theatre), Ensemble in Midnight (Union Theatre, Southwark), Edwin in Summer Holiday (Octagon Theatre Bolton and Pitlochry Festival Theatre), Various roles in Beauty and the Beast, The Panto That Nearly Never Was, Jack and the Beanstalk, Dick Whittington, Sleeping Beauty, Aladdin (Theatr Clwyd), Solo Singer in Welsh Musical Theatre Orchestra - A Night at the Musicals (Congress Theatre), Onstage Swing/1st cover Willard in Footloose (UK Tour), Douggie in Dusty (Charing Cross Theatre)

Luke also sings as part of the Four Harmonies (Jersey Boys Tribute) and has sang as a soloist at the Royal Albert Hall and Sydney Opera House.

Emily Bestow — Set & Costume Designer

Emily Bestow's headshot

Emily studied at Central St Martins and is now a freelance set and costume designer, who has four times been nominated for a Best Off West End Design award. She would like to say a particular thanks to her parents, who have provided her with many cups of tea in the morning and packed lunches to take into tech. It’s been like being back at school!

Her recent credits include -

Metamorphoses (New Wolsey Theatre), Robin Hood and the Major Oak (Derby Theatre), Flashdance/Carrie/Kipps (Bernie Grant Arts Centre), Little Red Robin Hood (Battersea Arts Centre), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Hull Truck), The Lies You Tell (Tour), Kinky Boots/Urinetown (Bernie Grant Arts Centre), Cratchit (Park Theatre), From Rushmere With Love (Eastern Angles), Sleeping Beauty and the Beast (Battersea Arts Centre), Extra Time (Derby Theatre), No Particular Order (Southwark Playhouse), Circle Game (Southwark Playhouse), Sam Snape and the Chillesford Chough (Eastern Angles), Fame (Bernie Grant Arts Centre), The Studio (One Night Records), 42nd Street (Upstairs at the Gatehouse), Fast (The Park Theatre), Anahera (Finborough Theatre), Flat Out (Upstairs at the Gatehouse), Honk (UK Tour), The Marvelous Wonderettes (Upstairs at the Gatehouse/ Windsor Theatre Royal), Cry Havoc (Upstairs at the Gatehouse), Cry God for harry, England and St George! (Duke of York/Edinburgh Fringe), Top Hat (Upstairs at the Gatehouse), Pete ’n’ Keely (Tristan Bates), Anything Goes (Upstairs at the Gatehouse).

Her work as an Assistant and Associate includes:

Vanara (Hackney Empire), Doctor Who: Time Fracture (Immersive Everywhere), The Great Gatsby (Immersive Everywhere), A Very Very Very Dark Matter (The Bridge), The Way of the World (Donmar Warehouse), The Writer (The Almeida) Home, I’m Darling (National Theatre/Theatre Clwyd).

James Cook — Sound Designer

James Cook's headshot.

James won 'Best Sound Design' at the Panto Awards in 2019 and was also nominated for the 2022 Awards. He has extensive experience with actor-musician based musicals and enjoys overcoming the challenges that arise with the complex format. James has also worked on plays with immersive soundscapes and a dash of modest composition, in many regional theatres including the New Wolsey Theatre, Yvonne Arnaud and Queen’s Theatre, Hornchurch to name a few. He has also designed for many commercial national touring shows.

Along with the aural aspects of Sound Design, James enjoys creating the design of the system and technical aspects that combine to create the experience for the audience. Find out more at www.james-cook.me.

Dan de Cruz — Musical Director

Dan gained a BMus (Hons) from the University of Surrey before going on to train on the post-graduate course at Guildford School of Acting.

Dan has recently been Musical Supervisor for CAKE opening at the Lyric Theatre and Associate Musical Supervisor for La Bamba! A Musical at the Peacock Theatre and on tour, working alongside Alfonso Casado Trigo.

He has worked extensively around the UK as a Musical Director: most recently on the UK tour of Beautiful – The Carole King Musical, Just So and Kiss Me, Kate! at the Watermill, Our Blue Heaven at the New Wolsey Theatre and as MD and Arranger on Justin Fletcher’s show – Justin’s Band

Other recent work includes the UK No.1 tour of the hit musical, Jackie – The Musical, Dick Whittington at the Wyllyotts, Beauty and the Beast and Red Riding Hood at the City Varieties, Assistant Musical Director for the critically acclaimed production of Made In Dagenham at the Queen’s Theatre/New Wolsey Theatre, and Musical Director & Orchestral Arranger for Aladdin, at the Queen’s Theatre, Hornchurch, which was voted one of the Top Ten Shows of 2015 in London Theatre 1, Seussical the Musical, Chicago, The Wedding Singer, On The Streets, Little Shop of Horrors, The Dracula Spectacular, FAME, Back to the 80's, The Pirates of Penzance, Annie, Guys and Dolls, The Wizard of Oz, Jesus Christ Superstar, Joseph, Oliver, The Mikado, A Christmas Carol, Captain Noah, The Evacuees and Sago The Clown.

Dan also has appeared on stage in shows including: Sinbad, Made In Dagenham, Sweet Charity Beauty and the Beast, Dick Whittington, Mods and Rox (New Wolsey); Lemon - The Musical (Arts Theatre); The Man Who Stole The Circus (Isis Theatre); Run For Your Wife, They're Playing Our Song (Queen's Theatre); Cinderella, Aladdin (City Varieties); Much Ado About Nothing, Romeo and Juliet (Stafford Castle); Buddy Vs The Killer (Raffles, Singapore); Robin Hood and the Babes in the Wood (Theatre Clwyd); My Fair Lady, West Side Story (Aberystwyth Arts Centre); Dawlish Road (Soho Theatre); The Far Pavilions, Time's Up (Shaftesbury Theatre); FAME (Palladium).

Maggie Rawlinson — Choreographer

Maggie Rawlinson's headshot.

Dick Whittington and his Cat will be Maggie's 27th pantomime that she has choreographed with credits in other theatres all around the UK including Salisbury Playhouse, the Greenwich Theatre and the Novello in London amongst others.

Credits at the New Wolsey Theatre are 5 rock ‘n’ roll pantos from 2007 to 2011; Beauty and the Beast, Cinderella, Aladdin, Jack and the Beanstalk & Robin Hood.

She has also worked on other rock ‘n’ roll pantos with the previous artistic director of the New Wolsey Theatre, Pete Rowe, for Theatre Clwyd & last year’s show Dick Whittington at the Leeds City Varieties Music Hall.

As an accomplished movement director and choreographer, other theatre credits include; Gypsy (Pitlochry Festival Theatre), Eye of the Storm, Nye and Jennie, Tom, A Story Of Tom Jones The Musical, Salsa!, Bankrupt Bride, Cyrano, Stowaway (all Theatr na n’Og prods), Jackie the Musical (Gardyne Theatre, Dundee), The Canterbury Tales (Mappa Mundi), Oh What A Lovely War, The Mabinogion (Theatr Clwyd), Be My Baby, A Woman In Mind, Martha, Josie And The Chinese Elvis (Salisbury Playhouse), Sweet Charity (BAC), Hansel and Gretel (Welsh National Opera and Nationale Reisopera), The Marriage Of Figaro (Opera North).

I directed and choreographed the Summer Youth Production of Oliver! for the Wyvern Theatre in Swindon and choreographed Summer Holiday, Grease and Hairspray for SYP too. I am an associate artist of London Youth Opera and have worked on over a dozen productions with the company to date. This Christmas will see the premiere of Pandora’s Box at the Susie Sainsbury Theatre in London.

Film and television work includes; Panto Shane a'r Bont Hud & Panto Shane a'r Belen Aur (Boom Cymru), The Crust (BBC), Henry VIII (Granada), In A Land Of Plenty (Talkback Prods), Assistant Choreographer on Tim Burton’s Charlie And The Chocolate Factory (Warner Bros), De-Lovely (MGM/Winkler Films) and Steven Spielberg’s A.I. Artificial Intelligence (Dreamworks).

Douglas Rintoul — Director

A photograph of Douglas Rintoul outside the New Wolsey Theatre, smiling, with his arms folded.

Douglas is an award-winning theatre-maker and cultural leader. He was born in Suffolk, grew up in Essex, read Drama and Theatre Arts at the University of Birmingham and was awarded a bursary on the Regional Theatre Young Director Scheme to Salisbury Playhouse where he trained as a director. He is the Chief Executive/Artistic Director of the New Wolsey Theatre, was the Artistic Director of Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch (2015 - 2022), founder of the national touring theatre company Transport (2010 - 2017), and an associate of Complicité (2004 - 2010).

Vikki Stone — Writer

Vikki Stone's headshot

Vikki Stone is an award-winning writer, composer, comedian and musician.

Writing credits include: co-adapter, writer and music supervisor for the Oliver Nominated Hey Duggee Live, #zoologicalsociety (Royal & Derngate); Cinderella, Aladdin (Lyric Hammersmith); music and lyrics for Alice In Wonderland (Liverpool Playhouse); music and lyrics for Peter Pan (Rose Theatre Kingston); Dick Whittington and his Cat (New Wolsey Theatre); Ten Pieces Special Report for BAFTA Nominated children’s music series BBC Ten Pieces, Our Girls Our Game (British Youth Music Theatre).

Vikki made history when she was the musical director, pianist and band leader of the Saturday night ITV prime-time show Romeo and Duet, making her the first on-screen female musical director of a primetime entertainment show in the UK.

Other TV appearances include: BBC Proms coverage for BBC Four, Romeo and Duet, Richard Osman’s House of Games, Celebrity Pointless, The Dog Ate My Homework, The John Bishop Show, Partners in Rhyme and the BAFTA award-winning Ten Pieces for BBC.

As a composer, classical works include: The Thing That Matters, a massed choral piece commissioned by the National Youth Choir of Great Britain, and The Concerto for Comedian and Orchestra which premiered at Glastonbury Festival.

Craig West — Lighting Designer

Craig West's headshot.

Craig studied Drama and Theatre Studies at Middlesex University.

An experienced Lighting Designer for theatre, dance and circus for the last 15 years, his work has been seen in productions for companies including The National Theatre, The Royal Shakespeare Company, LIFT, Emergency Exit Arts, Gorilla Circus, Above The Stag, The Space, New Diorama, Flute Theatre and Appetite Stoke.

Highlights include: Pericles (Riverside Studios); Coventry Embraces Amal (Coventry City of Culture); Unity (Out There Festival); The Tempest (Craiova Festival); Safe (New Diorama Theatre); Connections Festival (National Theatre); Courage Everywhere (National Theatre); 400 Years commemoration of Shakespeare’s Death (Royal Shakespeare Company); Yoko Ono – Onochord (Serpentine Gallery).


Reviews of Dick Whittington and his Cat

What the press say


⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ - 'the New Wolsey’s Rock ‘n’ Roll is a treat that cannot be missed'

Ipswich Star

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ - 'A stunning production which will have you rockin’ & rollin’ the night away!'

West End Best Friend

'a newly invigorated and brilliant treat for all the family.'

Ipswich24

What the public say

'absolutely fab and we loved it!'

Audience Comment

'First time at Wolsey panto, really enjoyed it. You're all brilliant'

Audience Comment

'Fabulous performance tonight. We hadn't been since covid-19 lockdown. It was Brilliant to be back.'

Audience Comment

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