Christian Patterson is one of the most recognisable faces on the Theatr Clwyd stage and is delighted to script his fifth panto for Mold. As an actor his many credits for the company include: The Rise and Fall of Little Voice, Insignificance, All My Sons and Under Milk Wood. Other credits include: The Way of the World (Donmar Warehouse); My Country (National Theatre); Blackbird (The Other Room); The Knowledge (Royal Court Theatre); and The American Clock (Old Vic).
He won the Best Actor Award in the 2016 Wales Theatre Awards. He won the inaugural Great British Panto Awards for Best Writer and was nominated for Best Script for Dick Wittington – The Puuurfect Rock ‘n’ Roll Panto, which he wrote for Theatr Clwyd in 2019.
We sat down with Christian to find out more about this year’s show:
Robin Hood is here. How does it feel to be back again with a Rock ‘n’ Roll panto?
I first walked through the doors of Theatr Clwyd back in 1997 so it’s always felt like a second home to me. I’m so proud of my association with the theatre. It’s been long and varied…I’ve acted in over 20 productions, written 5 pantos and directed a play there too. It’s given me so many opportunities over the years and I still get butterflies when I drive up the hill and see it in the distance. Writing panto for the theatre is a joy because I know the area and audience so well.
You’ve written many Theatr Clwyd Pantos, how do you go about adapting the stories?
Well, the first thing I do is read the original story (if there is one) because I feel I owe it to the writer to read the story they wrote before I quite literally tear it up and turn into a panto. I always try to find something in the original stories that I can put in the panto. With Robin Hood for example I found out that Little John worked as a servant to the Sheriff before becoming an outlaw, so I put that in…whether or not it stays in remains to be seen!
Do you have an all-time favourite Panto?
Yes! I love, love, love Aladdin! It’s a great story and has, for me, the best Dame of any panto…Widow Twankey. Twankey is the part that every panto Dame wants to play! She’s the Hamlet of the panto world!
There are always amazing tongue twisters and jokes in panto, do you have a favourite line from the show this year?
Yes I do…but I’m not telling you what it is otherwise you’ll know it before seeing the panto! From past pantos…well, I loved writing Cousin Rhodri from Wrexham (Dick Wittington 2018/19). It took an age to write and was over in 2 minutes! I loved it!
What would you say to someone who hasn’t bought their tickets yet?
BUY A TICKET! Then buy another ticket and come again! Robin Hood is a real swashbuckling, swinging, all singing & dancing extravaganza with an incredible team of people that have worked incredibly hard to make this panto the best one yet!
Robin Hood will be performed at Theatr Clwyd until 14 January 2023. Booking is available here