ROCKINGHAM resident Sylvia Mellor is helping to give the fairytale classic Puss in Boots a bush makeover this month.
Written by Judith Prior and directed by Sheryl Gale at Phoenix Theatre, Puss in Thongs is a pantomime for the whole family that follows the adventures of Puss (played by Mellor) and Harry as they set out to find wealth and romance.
Before they head off, Puss orders Harry to buy her some boots and a grand hat – but they only have $5 and compromise by buying thongs instead.
Along the way they encounter a bunyip, witch and dancing camel, encouraging audience participation to draw them into the adventure.
“Puss is a very likeable and charming cat who can get people to do whatever it is she wants just by asking,” Mellor said.
“But is it for good or bad reasons? I will not say – people will just have to come along and see what happens.
“Aside from having to learn so many lines for the role, actually playing a cat is quite a challenge as is remembering to stay in character as Puss.
“It certainly has been a fun role to take on and I look forward to bringing the character to life for the audience, especially the children that come to see the show.”
First performing in 2010, Mellor became involved in musical theatre in 2013 and has performed at the Pinjarra Civic Centre, Koorliny Arts Centre and Phoenix Theatre in productions such as The Wedding Singer, Legally Blonde and The Brain From Planet X.
“I had never heard of Puss in Thongs but I have done a few pantomimes before and they’re really a lot of fun, so I thought ‘why not try out’?”
“Director Sheryl Gale and I have been in shows together previously so I was excited to see how she would take on this panto in the director’s chair.
“The cast and I have really had a wonderful and fun time working on putting this show together – it would be a ‘cat’-astrophe if you missed it.”
Gale said there were numerous challenges in staging Puss in Thongs, which were rewarding at the same time.
“Making sure the audience is taken on a journey and included in the action, then left with a sense of it being a great show, is paramount,” she said.
“When I read the title Puss in Thongs I had a giggle and was hooked on the idea that it would be a great first show for me to direct.
“I also love how interactive pantomime can be, as well as how it can captivate an audience.”
WHAT: Puss in Thongs
WHEN: 8pm on July 14, 15, 16, 22, 23, 28, 29 and 30 with 2pm matinees July 16 and 24.
TICKETS: $20 adults, $18 concession, $15 children (up to 15 years) plus transaction fees – book at www.phoenixtheatreinc.com.au.
WHERE: Phoenix Theatre, 435 Carrington Street, Hamilton Hill