Aladdin cast & creative announced with first image for Lyric Hammersmith Theatre 2021 panto

Panto’s back – oh yes it is! The Lyric Hammersmith Theatre today announces the full cast and creative team for its highly anticipated production of Aladdin which kickstarts London’s 2021 panto season, running from 19 November 2021 to 02 January 2022. Tickets are on sale now at www.lyric.co.uk

The first images are also released of Qasim Mahmood as Aladdin in this magical new adaptation by award-winning comedian, actor and composer Vikki Stone who returns to write her debut pantomime for the Lyric following critically acclaimed appearances as Abanazar in Aladdin in 2016 and Fleshcreep in Jack and the Beanstalk in 2017. Aladdin is directed by Abigail Graham whose credits include The Tyler Sisters (Hampstead), Death of a Salesman (Royal and Derngate / UK Tour) and the upcoming world premiere MUM (Soho Theatre/Theatre Royal Plymouth).

The festive family adventure stars Qasim Mahmood as Aladdin, Stephan Boyce as Dave Twankey, Kate Donnachie as Emperor/Genie, Irvine Iqbal as Abanazer, Gracie McGonigal as Wishy and Ellena Vincent as Jasmine. The cast is completed by the Lyric Panto Ensemble of inspiring young West London talent: Caroline Adebayo, 20, from Hillingdon; Kane Feagan, 24, from Hammersmith & Fulham; Carla-Jean Lares, 20, from Hammersmith & Fulham; and Wilf Walsworth, 24, from Wandsworth.

Set Design is by Lily Arnold, Costume Design by Kinnetia Isadore, Lighting Design by Sally Ferguson, Composition and Arrangement by Corin Buckeridge, Choreography by Chi-San Howard and Casting by Harry Blumenau.

Get ready to sing ‘Glory, Glory, Hammersmith’ once again and join Aladdin, the Genie and their friends on a magical carpet ride. This festive family adventure follows Aladdin on his quest for true love, fortune and hugs with his nearest and dearest. Expect the usual Lyric twist on all of your favourite characters as well as live music, magic lamps, plenty of laughs and a journey to a faraway land.

Aladdin marks the first major lead role for Qasim Mahmood and Gracie McGonigal following the panto tradition at the Lyric Hammersmith Theatre which showcases exceptional talent and has launched the career of many young actors over the years. It has given rise to several stars of the smash hit musical Hamilton, including Karl Queensborough, currently performing in the title role and previously seen as Aladdin in 2016, Allyson Ava-Brown who appeared as Princess Jasmine in the same production and has played the role of Angelica Schuyler, and Jamael Westman who performed in the Panto Ensemble in 2011 and starred as Hamilton in the original London company. Other recent performers include Luke Latchman, seen as Dick Whittington in the Lyric’s 10th anniversary panto in 2018, and known for playing Sayid and an alternate Jamie in Everybody’s Talking About Jamie in the West End.

Stephan Boyce – Dave Twankey

Stephan Boyce’s theatre credits include Captain Flinn and The Pirate Dinosaurs (Les Enfants Terribles), Three Musketeers, Macbeth (Iris Theatre), Thirst (Brightlights Productions), Dangling (Southwark Playhouse), Romeo and Juliet Unzipped (Salisbury Playhouse), Titus Andronicus (Malachite Theatre), Hair (English Theatre Frankfurt). On screen, Stephan has also completed filming for the upcoming feature film Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight, and he has previously appeared in BBC’s EastEnders. Video game includes: Dead Island 2.

Kate Donnachie – Emperor/Genie
Kate Donnachie is an actor, singer and beatboxer. She has previously performed in the Lyric’s panto as a member of the Young Ensemble in Dick Whittington in 2014. She graduated from Italia Conti (BA Acting) as a Carlton Hobbs Bursary Award Runner-Up and Alan Bates Award finalist. She’s been part of BAC Beatbox Academy since 2014, training and performing at various venues from The Royal Festival Hall to Latitude Festival. She now facilitates on Beatbox Academy sessions and has taught beatboxing and hip-hop theatre with Beats & Elements at Mountview. She was also a National Youth Theatre member. Theatre includes: Dick Whittington (Lyric Hammersmith Theatre), Arthur/Merlin (Iris Theatre), Crongton Knights (Pilot Theatre), Sirens (Zoo Co), Home to Vote (Tiny Theatre Company), Return To Elm House, Frankenstein: How To Make A Monster (Battersea Arts Centre) 3 Years, 1 Week and a Lemon Drizzle (Ad & Kd Theatre, Edinburgh Fringe). Radio includes: China Towns.

Irvine Iqbal – Abanazer

Irvine Iqbal recently appeared in Romeo & Juliet (Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre) and Now or Never (Barn Theatre). Ahead of Aladdin, he can also be seen in Ayub Khan Din’s East Is East this autumn (Birmingham Rep / National Theatre). Previous theatre credits include: The Sultan in Disney’s Aladdin (West End), Wuthering Heights (Lyric Hammersmith Theatre), The Boy in the Dress (RSC), Broken Wings (Theatre Royal Haymarket), Branded (Criterion), Bend it Like Beckham (Phoenix Theatre), World of Walliams (Harper Collins Publisher Ltd), Mr Stink (UK tour),Then Like My Dreams (Theatre Royal Stratford East), The Good Woman of Setzuan (Leicester Haymarket), The Mahabharata (Old Vic Theatre), The Far Pavilions (Shaftesbury Theatre), Little Shop of Horrors (Jersey Opera House), Jallebies and Tea (Chichester Festival Theatre), Bombay Dreams (Victoria Apollo Theatre). TV includes: EastEnders, Doctors, Casualty, The Bill, Spotlights and Saris. Film includes: Aladdin: Live From The West End, The Cook, The Pinocchio Effect, Infinite Justice.

Qasim Mahmood – Aladdin
Qasim Mahmood makes his first major lead professional theatre role as Aladdin at the Lyric Hammersmith Theatre having previously performed on stage in Tartuffe (RSC/Birmingham REP), and Trojan Horse (Lung Theatre/UK Tour). Screen credits include the film We Can Be Heroes and the BBC television series Doctors. Qasim trained with the National Youth Theatre and Rose Bruford College.

Gracie McGonigal – Wishy

Gracie McGonigal makes her professional stage debut in the role of Wishy. She recently completed filming for the Amazon Prime TV series adaptation of Naomi Alderman’s The Power. She has also been followed in Gracie’s Story, a series of short films documenting her life as a disabled actress with a bionic arm. Gracie trained in Musical Theatre at Mountview and at The Brit School. Other upcoming appearances include a solo concert this autumn.

@gracelesleym

Ellena Vincent – Jasmine
Ellena Vincent recently appeared in Hamilton (Victoria Palace) in the ensemble and as understudy to all three Schuyler Sisters. Other theatre credits include: Gloria Jones in 20th Century Boy (UK Tour), The Lorax (Old Vic), One Love (Birmingham Rep), The Book of Mormon (Prince of Wales), Jane Eyre (National Theatre), Little Shop of Horrors (Manchester Royal Exchange) and Gary Coleman in Avenue Q (UK Tour/South Korea Tour).

Vikki Stone – Writer

Vikki Stone is an award-winning writer, composer, actor and musician. She returns to the Lyric Hammersmith Theatre to write her debut pantomime following critically acclaimed appearances as Fleshcreep in Jack and the Beanstalk in 2017 and Abanazer in Aladdin in 2017.

Vikki is well known for her original comedy songs. Credits include: digital musical #zoologicalsociety (Royal & Derngate) which received nominations for the 2019 and 2020 Stiles and Drew Prize, solo writer of a short film for the BAFTA Nominated children’s classical music series BBC Ten Pieces, The Now Show (BBC Radio 4), and the official BBC Proms podcast which she presented for two series.

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

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.

Abigail Graham – Director

Future work includes: MUM (Plymouth Drum/Soho Theatre), The Merchant of Venice (The Globe). From 2013-2017 she was the founding Artistic Director of OpenWorks Theatre, an organisation dedicated to changing who goes to the theatre by changing who makes it. She was the Lyric Ensemble Director from 2019-2020. Theatre work as a Director includes: Earthquakes in London (Guildhall), The Tyler Sisters (Hampstead), Linda (RADA), 31 Hours (The Bunker), Death of a Salesman (Royal and Derngate/UK Tour), And Now: The World! (OpenWorks, UK tour), Timmy Failure: Mistakes Were Made (Assembly Rooms), Debris (OpenWorks, Southwark Playhouse), Molly Sweeney (Print Room/Lyric Belfast), Blue Heaven (Finborough). Directing in community and education includes work at Almeida, Young Vic, Clean Break, The Bush and Synergy.

Lily Arnold – Set Designer

Lily Arnold is a theatre designer whose designs include: A Doll’s House (Lyric Hammersmith), Pah-La (Royal Court), Things Of Dry Hours (Young Vic), Snow In Midsummer, The Jew of Malta, The Rape of Lucrece, King Lear, The Taming of the Shrew (RSC),The Remains Of The Day, Rules for Living (Royal & Derngate), Dick Wittington, Sleeping Beauty (Stratford East), The Unreturning [costume design] (Frantic Assembly), Room (Abbey, Dublin/Theatre Royal, Stratford East, The Grand Theatre, Toronto), Love Lies Bleeding (Print Room), Henry V (Tobacco Factory), The Girl on the Train (Leeds Playhouse), Dublin Carol (Sherman), Broken Biscuits (Paines Plough/Live), Bits of Me Are Falling Apart (Soho), The Solid Life of Sugar Water (National/Theatre Royal, Plymouth), The Sugar Coated Bullets of The Bourgeoisie (HighTide/Arcola), I Cinna (The Poet), Jeramee, Hartleby & Ooglemore (Unicorn), Forget Me Not (Bush Theatre), So Here We Are (HighTide/Royal Exchange), Happy New (Trafalgar Studios), Ahasverus (Hampstead).

Kinnetia Isidore – Costume Designer

After graduating with a degree in costume design from Wimbledon College of Art, Kinnetia has worked across a diverse range of costume roles predominantly as a theatrical costume designer. Her recent credits include, as Costume Designer: Adult Children (Donmar Warehouse) Jesus Hopped the ‘A’ Train (Young Vic), Enter Achilles (Rambert, Saddlers Wells & Onassis STEGI). As Associate Costume Designer: Constellations (Vaudeville, Donmar Theatre, West End), Ragtime (Arts Ed). As Costume Supervisor: The Third Day – Live Event (Punchdrunk, Sky & HBO).

Sally Ferguson, Lighting Designer

Theatre includes: Two (New Vic Theatre), Pippi Longstocking (Royal & Derngate), The Last King Of Scotland (Sheffield Crucible), The Importance of Being Earnest (Watermill Theatre), Strange Fruit, An Adventure (Bush Theatre), Snow White (The Wrong Crowd), End of the Pier, Honour, Building the Wall (Park Theatre), Carmen the Gypsy (Arcola Theatre), To See The Invisible (Aldeburgh Festival), Again (Trafalgar Studios), Richard III (Perth Theatre), 31 Hours (Bunker Theatre), Aladdin, Shiver (Watford Palace Theatre), Educating Rita (Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch), While We’re Here (Farnham Maltings), Sweet Charity (Manchester Royal Exchange), Jess and Jo Forever (Orange Tree Theatre/Farnham Maltings), We Wait in Joyful Hope, And Then Come The Nightjars (Theatre 503), Big Fish (Arts Ed Studio Theatre),The Sleeping Beauties (Sherman Cymru), As You Like It (Southwark Playhouse).

Corin Buckeridge – Composer

For the Lyric: Cinderella, Aladdin, Jack And The Beanstalk, Dick Whittington.

Other theatre credits include: Arcadia (West End/Broadway); Becket, The Cherry Orchard (both West End); Rosencrantz And Guildenstern Are Dead (The Old Vic); Closer, The Late Middle Classes, Hamlet (Donmar); The Alchemist, King John, Tis Pity She’s A Whore, King Baby, Transit Of Venus, The Merchant Of Venice, Richard III, A Warwickshire Testimony (RSC); Our Lady Of Sligo, Jumpers (NT); Effigies Of Wickedness (The Gate); King John, The Wars Of The Roses, Ghosts, A Day In The Death Of Joe Egg, The Second Mrs Tanqueray, Hay Fever, As You Like It, The Lady From The Sea (Rose, Kingston); Stones In His Pockets (Theatre Royal Bath/Rose Theatre Kingston/UK Tour); On The Road With Ron And Ros (Modern Music Theatre Troupe); Angela, an inverted love story an opera for puppets (Rosemary Branch); Work in most major regional theatres.

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