Portadown panto offers post-festive frolics

Daniel May with other cast members of Sinbad
Daniel May with other cast members of Sinbad

You might have thought panto season was behind us but you’d actually be wrong because the popular annual Portadown panto begins January 16 with a colourful production of Sinbad the Sailor starring the News Letter’s own advertising sales rep Daniel May, 30, a seasoned am dram performer, in the title role. The Gateway Theatre Group are now in final rehearsals before curtain-up and this is Craigavon-born Daniel’s fith consecutive panto role with the collective.

May grew up with a passion for acting and singing that has taken him to the last 25 on Andrew Lloyd Webber’s search for the perfect singer to play Joseph in Joseph And His Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat, just narrowly missing out on appearing on the TV show in 2007.

Sinbad will be staged in Portadown Town Hall until February 1. Daniel, who has also appeared in Boggie Nights at the Market Place Theatre Armagh, and Les Miserables in St Anthony’s Parochial Hall, Craigavon, will star in Sinbad in a spectacular costume.

Daniel said: “I’ve been performing since I was 18 and I absolutely love it. This is my fifth year performing in Gateway’s panto and it is so hugely popular - people even come to see this from as far away as Portrush.” What’s the story in Sinbad then I ask? “He’s a sailor who is looking for love and along the way has all kinds of adventures before finally falling in love. Pantos have to have happy endings!” And of course, they do. There are also a lot of power ballads in this to keep the mood buoyant including Dream Lover and a Grease mash-up. Call 02838 351313 for tickets.