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Drag Queens, Divas, Debauchery, Depravity and Debasement
Traditional pantomimes have always appealed to young and old alike. Although our English smutty humour requires a fair sprinkling of double entendres, these have to be carefully tailored both for the adults at one level, and for the younger members of the audience. However there are a few adult pantos that bypass the younger generation. If you look hard enough, you'll be able to find one and enjoy yourself for a couple of hours without having to worry about the need for sanitising the language and the plot. Pas devant les enfants need not apply to the following adult entertainments as the kiddies won't be allowed in. Read on if you want to be debauched, depraved and debased.
You'll have to be quick to catch Alice in Poundland at Battersea Barge as it finishes its run on 12 December and tickets are selling fast. Billed as a cross between a Carry On film and a cabaret car crash, this is the twelfth annual pantomime to take to the Thames. The cast includes Holly Aisbitt and the Reigning Alternative Miss World, Fancy Chance.
Alice in Poundland (Picture Courtesy of the Battersea Barge Facebook Page)
If you're happy to wait until next year Aladdin: A Pantomime for Grown Ups opens on 16 January at the Brick Lane Music Hall in Woolwich. Vincent Hayes will be Wishee Washee, supported by Andrew Robley and '2 Pauls'. Full details of performances are on the website, and are accompanied by lunch, tea or dinner, depending on the time of the performance.
Aladdin A Pantomime for Grown Ups (Picture Courtesy of bricklanemusichall.co.uk)
The Royal Vauxhall Tavern's (RVT) offering for this Christmas is The Comatose Beauty. It's a tale of a bitter old queen, who doesn't receive a party invitation, and of a man kissing a comatose tranny in a glass casket. The cast includes Mz Kimberley, Myra DuBois, Alp Haydar and Lorraine Bowen; it runs between 5 and 28 December.
The Comatose Beauty (Picture Courtesy of rvt.org.uk)
London's Lesbian Community Theatre Troupe are appearing in Peta Pan at Wood Green's Karamel Club. Mummy Darling has fed her daughter Wendy a diet of stories about Peta Pam; the young girl is anxious to visit Well I Never Land with Peta and Tink, but they are not as young as they used to be. To find out what happens you will have to book to see this panto between 6 and 15 December.
The Green Carnation in Soho boasts the capital's filthiest pantomime, one that is even more camp than Christmas in Old Compton Street. Snow White & The Seven Poofs – The Climax runs between 4 December and 6 January starring Tanya Hyde as Snow White.
Finally there is Dick! A hilariously naughty production that I've just been to see. The generously endowed protagonist (who hides his pride and joy behind a huge glittery codpiece) and his pussy – sorry his cat, Dave - come to London. Here they meet Sofonda Cox, (played by the drag DJ and club hostess Dusty O) her niece Alice Fitz-Nicely and Fairy Bell-End. After an encounter with the evil Queen Runt, and a boat trip aboard the Leaky Vessel sailing up the Streaky Crack they eventually find the crown jewels and Dick unlocks Alice's chastity belt to find a surprise. It's packed full with smut and references to sexual acts but, as the late Kenny Everett would say: It's all in the best possible taste. One and three-quarter hours of blue humour, it contains all the usual pantomime offerings: the singing of a communal song (okay so it's rude, but we are all adults), interaction between the cast and the audience, booing and shouting at the actors when prompted, an it's behind you moment and the dragging of audience members onto the stage for a little bit of harmless humiliation. You can catch this at The Lounge in the Leicester Square Theatre until 20 January 2013.
If you're hankering to see a panto and have no youngsters to take, why not book a ticket to one of these adult offerings? They're bags of fun, just as long as your mind is a little on the broad side. However I wouldn't advise taking your maiden aunt: she might not approve.