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Carrie Hope Fletcher and Ore Oduba to star in Sleeping Beauty

The production marks Fletcher's panto debut... Oh yes, it does!

Carrie Hope Fletcher and Ore Oduba
© David Oxberry

Multiple-time WhatsOnStage Award winner Carrie Hope Fletcher will be starring in her first-ever pantomime this year!

Fletcher (Andrew Lloyd Webber's Cinderella) and Ore Oduba (Rocky Horror Show) will headline Sleeping Beauty as the villainous Carabosse and Prince Orlando, respectively, at The Marlowe Theatre in Canterbury.

The cast also includes WhatsOnStage Award nominee Jennie Dale (CBeebies' Swashbuckle) as Fairy Moonbeam, alongside Ben Roddy (Doctor Faustus) as The Dame, Max Fulham (CBBC's Crackerjack) as Jangles and Ellie Kingdon (Grease) as Aurora.

Fletcher said: "I'm so excited. I didn't see a panto until I was 19, that was my first experience of panto. I love it so much. I love how out there they are, I love that they use songs that everyone knows, I love all of the outlandish characters and I love the audience participation.

"The fact that I was asked to play the villain was a very, very big draw for me. Wednesday Addams was probably the closest I ever got to playing a villain and I really enjoyed playing a slightly darker character and so just playing an outright villain is going to be so much fun. I don't think I've ever looked forward to being booed before!"

Oduba added: "In many ways I feel like I was made for panto because I love having that rapport with the audience, I'm a family guy myself and I love the idea of families coming to see the show. I know that everybody loves The Marlowe panto. It's such a popular experience for everybody around Christmas so I feel really privileged and lucky to be part of this amazing group and part of the show. We're going to have fun."

Written and directed by Paul Hendy and co-produced by The Marlowe and Evolution Productions, Sleeping Beauty will run from 25 November 2022 to 8 January 2023.

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