Parkwood Theatres See Record-Breaking Attendances As Pantomimes Make Their Return
31 January2023– Parkwood Theatres’ saw pantomime attendance figures come roaring back to heights not seen since before the pandemic, outperforming sales in 2019, the season before theatres were forced to close.
The 2022 festive period saw The Castle Theatre in Wellingborough, The Hazlitt Theatre in Maidstone, The Playhouse Theatre in Weston-super-Mare and The Hawth in Crawley each host productions of classic pantomime stories, including Sleeping Beauty, Jack & the Beanstalk, and The New Adventures of Peter Pan.
The theatre group sold over 80,000 tickets across its four theatres during pantomime season, with a 7.76% increase to gross box office sales compared to 2019. Weston Playhouse’sSleeping Beauty pulled in over 20,000 audience members alone throughout its run, making it the biggest ever festive show in the seaside theatre’s history.
This increase in sales came despite the industry facing several challenges, including an increased cost of living and competition from the 2022 FIFA World Cup, with football matches broadcasted on television throughout December causing conflicting schedules for potential visitors.
All four pantomimes received overwhelmingly positive feedback from audiences and critics alike. Pre-sales for 2023’s pantomimes are already underway and performing strongly, with over 1,000 more sales compared to the same time in 2019.
Tony Doherty, Managing Director at Parkwood Theatres commented on the success of this year’s pantomimes:
“The pantomime is a staple Christmas tradition in the UK, and we’re thrilled with the success of this year’s festive performances. The recent pantomime runs brought audiences flooding back to our theatres, outperforming 2019’s attendance figures, and I’d like to extend a huge congratulations to all the venue staff, cast, crew, and everybody who helped to make these shows such a success.
“We believe theatres play a vital role in UK communities, which is why everyone at Parkwood Theatres works hard to grow our offering, supporting the arts while giving visitors unrivalled, unforgettable experiences.”
The curtain closed on the final show on the 2nd January, and the teams are already hard at work preparing the shows and stages for the year ahead. To find out more about Parkwood Theatres, visit:https://www.parkwoodtheatres.co.uk/