Aladdin team managed to magic up an audience after Hitchin panto punters backed out

Genie Aimi Percival, Aladdin Stephen Emery and Chantelle Kemp as Princess Jizzmin are part of the ad

Genie Aimi Percival, Aladdin Stephen Emery and Chantelle Kemp as Princess Jizzmin are part of the adult panto team who made sure the show went on despite the last-minute cancellation of a block booking. - Credit: Archant

An adult panto rose to the occasion after learning a block-booking had been cancelled – by offering a free performance in Hitchin.

The Market Theatre in Sun Street was due to host the adults-only panto Alladin Trouble to just two paying punters after the party cancelled at the last minute, but decided the show had to go on.

Market Theatre manager Glyn Doggett said: “These things happen – but then we thought: ‘What should we do?’

“We decided to do the panto as a free performance, and spread the word. It was great as we had about 30 people turn up in the end – far more than our original estimate.

“And because it was free it was a slightly more relaxed atmosphere than if we had customers who had paid to watch it.

“The feedback was fantastic from everyone who was there. The audience really loved it and there was a superb atmosphere.

“The cast doing the Adult Panto on the night were actually our cover team as the main cast were on tour that night – and they did brilliantly!

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“Alladdin Trouble is a good old ‘adult’ panto with innuendo, and farcical adult humour. It’s not offensive by any means, it’s just a bit of fun and it appeals to all ages from 18 upwards.

“There are a few ad-libs, and lots of audience participation which we encourage, where the crowd can shout out as much as they want – all of which certainly adds to the atmosphere.

“It is a lot of fun and we would love to see as many people as possible come along to see us.”

In the action the Market Theatre take a traditional story and turn it upside down with corny jokes and as many raunchy plots as the audience can handle. Throw in a camp monkey, a dastardly uncle and a terribly wicked widow – what’s not to like?

The show continues until April at the Sun Street venue – you can book £14 tickets on 01462 433553 or visit for more.