THE WIGHT STROLLERS CELEBRATE 40TH YEAR WITH SLEEPING BEAUTY PANTOMIME

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The Wight Strollers are celebrating their 40th anniversary in style, starting with this February’s production of Sleeping Beauty at Medina Theatre on 15th/16th/22nd February.

The script is written by Emily and Sarah Scotcher and follows the story of the beautiful Princess Aurora, who is cursed by wicked fairy Carabosse to prick her finger on the spindle of a spinning wheel on her eighteenth birthday – and die. The 3 good fairies step in, but can only tweak the curse so that she will not die but instead will sleep for 100 years, or until she is awakened by True Love’s First Kiss.

The Wight Strollers are making this production a celebration of all things pantomime and of all things Wight Strollers, with all sorts of little touches and nods back to their roots, including an extra special finale.

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The company was formed in 1980 on the retirement of Nesta Meech, who ran the Nesta Meech School of Dance and put on annual pantomimes for charity. Some of her students did not want to give up performing the annual pantomimes, so they banded together to create The New Wight Strollers – the ‘new’ was later dropped – and their first pantomime was Cinderella in 1981.

Since then, The Wight Strollers have gone from strength to strength – and there are 5 founder members still in the company today, all of whom will be taking to the stage in Sleeping Beauty.

 As always, all proceeds will be going to charity and every penny will be staying on the Isle of Wight.

Nick Weightman as Prince Hugo and Izzi Rudd as Princess Aurora. Photo: Emily Scotcher

Over the last 40 years, The Wight Strollers have donated £168,678 to Island charities and good causes; when Nesta’s own charity donations from her pantomimes are added, the grand total is well over £200,000.

 Their chosen charities for Sleeping Beauty are The IOW MS Society, WightDASH, Isle of Wight Suicide Prevention and Intervention, IOW School Pastors, West Wight Men in Sheds – and they will also be purchasing their 10th Public Access Defibrillator for the Island.

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This year, The Wight Strollers will be supporting twice the number of charities, as they are not only putting on Sleeping Beauty but also will be taking to Medina again this July with The Wind in the Willows – The Musical.

Tickets for Sleeping Beauty can be booked by phoning 01983 823884 or by visiting www.medinatheatre.co.uk or by visiting the 1Leisure Reception.

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