Press Release: Mayflower Theatre Announces Initial Panto Casting



Mayflower Theatre have announced that soap legend Steve McFadden, funny man Bobby Davro and ultimate pantomime dame Andrew Ryan will star in this year’s must-see Mayflower Theatre pantomime, Dick Whittington from Saturday 15 December.


Soap royalty Steve McFadden will play the ultimate panto villain King Rat in this year’s production. Since graduating from RADA Steve has been a screen regular after making his debut in The Firm, starring opposite Phil Collins in Buster and held roles in The Bill, Minder and Bergerac. It is as Walford’s most iconic tough guy Phil Mitchell in BBC’s EastEnders that Steve is best known, a role he has played for almost 30 years and won numerous awards for, including Best Actor, Male Soap Star and for which he received the British Soap Award for Outstanding Achievement. In his time on Albert Square Steve has found himself embroiled in numerous high-profile storylines, including the infamous ‘Who shot Phil?’ and ‘Sharongate’ infidelity, and his recent battle with saving the Queen Vic.


Steve regularly appears in pantomime and for the last two festive seasons has worked for producers Qdos Entertainment, starring as King Rat in Dick Whittington at Birmingham Hippodrome opposite John Barrowman and The Krankies and last year headlined as Captain Hook at the Theatre Royal Plymouth in Peter Pan.


Bobby Davro is well-known for his illustrious television career which has seen him present his own series Bobby Davro on the Box, Bobby’s Sketch Pad, TV Weekly, Public Enemy Number One, Rock With Laughter and Run the Risk, and host 65 episodes of Winner Takes All. He has also appeared in EastEnders playing the loveable rogue Vinnie Monks, donned skates on Dancing on Ice, and came fourth in Celebrity Big Brother for Channel 5. No stranger to pantomime Bobby has delighted theatre audiences year after year as one of panto-land’s most sought-after comedians and will be playing Idle Jack.


Joining them is pantomime dame extraordinaire Andrew Ryan who is no stranger to pantomime. This year’s Mayflower production marks Andrew’s 32nd pantomime, his 28th year as dame and his second Southampton appearance having previously starred alongside Brian Conley and Lesley Joseph in Robinson Crusoe in 2013. Andrew delights audiences every Christmas with his quick-fire comedy, dance routines and outrageous costumes which he designs and creates. In addition to his pantomime work Andrew is regularly seen on stages across the country appearing and directing productions including The Black Veil and House Guest and Anthony Horowitz’s Mindgame, and is an alumni of The Mousetrap in the west end and The Rocky Horror Show.


Dick Whittington will be staged by Qdos Entertainment, the world’s biggest pantomime producer, and the company behind Mayflower Theatre’s annual pantomime. Dick Whittington will feature Southampton’s hallmark of outstanding entertainment for theatregoers of all ages.


Mayflower audiences will join the handsome hero Dick Whittington (and his trusty cat) as he seeks fame, fortune and happiness journeying to become the Lord Mayor of London. Guided by the magical Fairy Bow Bells on an adventure that sends him from London town to the High Seas headed for Morocco audiences should not miss the action-packed pantomime full of laughter, music and dance. Dick Whittington will be brought magically to life based on Qdos Entertainment’s critically-acclaimed, Olivier Award nominated production staged at the London Palladium last year.




Qdos Entertainment’s Managing Director Michael Harrison said: “I’m thrilled that Steve will be reprising his must-see role as the ultimate evil rodent, King Rat and that Bobby and Andrew will be joining him. With Steve’s ability to bring some Mitchell menace to proceedings, Bobby and Andrew’s hilarious comedy and further star casting to be announced in the coming weeks, audiences are in for yet another fantastic festive production, perfect for all the family.”


Mayflower Theatre Chief Executive Michael Ockwell added, “I am delighted that we will be bringing Britain’s best known baddie Steve McFadden alongside the hilarious Bobby Davro and Andrew Ryan to the theatre this Christmas. Great family comedy entertainment is at the heart of this production and with further star cast to announce, I know that this year’s pantomime will be the best yet”.


With tickets already on sale, audiences shouldn’t leave it any longer to book their tickets for Dick Whittington at Mayflower Theatre – it’s the pantomime paved with gold.


Tickets for Dick Whittington (15 December 2018 – 6 January 2019) are on sale via Mayflower Theatre Box Office tel: 02380 711811 or online at Ovation Restaurant bookings: 02380 711833