Some facts you might not know about panto

Most pantomime feature a good fairy and a nasty villain, right? It is actually a custom in panto for certain characters to always enter from stage right (good characters) and stage left (for the baddies). This is a tradition formed from superstition where the right signifies Heaven and the left symbolises hell!

Have you noticed that the panto dame keeps dashing on and off the stage? Screenwriters tend to make scenes this way to show off the weird and wonderful costume even more!

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Theatre superstition tells us that the last lines of the finale pantomime, which are usually spoken in rhyming stanzas, may not be pronounced in rehearsal until opening night, as it is considered bad luck if they are.

The principal male characters (think Aladdin, Jack and Dick Whittington) tend to be played by women. Find out what’s on with Panto Preston this year at a site like

The hilarious scenes where characters get covered in gunge, bubbles or water is professionally known as ‘The Slosh Scene’. Recent shows have seen the use of substances such as wallpaper paste, laundry soap and even ice cream!

The first time Dick Whittington and his Cat performed on stage was more than 70 years ago in 1940.

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The panto fever never really ends. Each January, after completion of the pantomime season, theatre teams only have a month to work out what the next panto will be later in the year and scheduling rehearsals and actors!