Ray, who is currently touring the UK in the musical Legally Blonde, has a very special connection with the local area, having recently married Bournemouth-born West End star Emma Stephens in a private ceremony on a Caribbean beach. The happy couple are also celebrating the news that they are expecting a baby in July and plan to decorate the newborn’s nursery in their apartment in Poole, which overlooks the sea.
Liverpool-born Ray will be joined by one of Britain’s most experienced panto performers Don Maclean, who many will remember from the hit 1970’s BBC children’s show Crackerjack. Don, who has been awarded an MBE and received a Papal Knighthood from the Pope himself, will be making his 40th appearance in pantomime this year as Widow Twankey, and has even been given the accolade of being named, by The Stage, as one of the Top Ten Dames in the country.
American actor Tim Flavin, who will be playing the evil Abanazar, has won numerous awards for his work in hit musicals on Broadway and in the West End, and was the first American to receive the Laurence Olivier Award in 1984 for his performance in the musical On Your Toes.
Aladdin will run at Lighthouse, Poole’s Centre for the Arts from Friday 7 December until Sunday 6 January 2013.