Sidmouth virtual pantomime casts Covid-19 as the baddie

Sidmouth author, story teller and radio presenter Janet Dowling is hoping to bring the community tog

Sidmouth author, story teller and radio presenter Janet Dowling is hoping to bring the community together with her virtual pantomime. Bodgeit and Kobble Productions - Credit: Archant

Covid-19 will be playing the Grinch in this inventive pantomime put together by the community and a Sidmouth story teller.

A virtual pantomime with Covid-19 playing the baddie is being filmed in Sidmouth - and the whole town is invited to take part.

Sidmouth storyteller Janet Dowling, of Bodgit and Kobble Lockdown Community Productions, is asking locals to set aside as little as 15 seconds to film themselves searching for Santa at well-known locations in the town.

Most of the pantomime’s speaking parts have been allocated but Janet still needs self-filmed clips of people stood in front of Sidmouth landmarks looking for the big, bearded fellow and saying, ‘sorry I can’t see Father Christmas’.

The virtual pantomime, a ‘mash up of When The Grinch Stole Christmas with Covid-19 playing the Grinch’, will be streamed online. The Herald caught up with Janet this week to find out more.

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“It’s a bit of fun to cheer us all up at this difficult time,” she said.

“My hope is that it brings the community together as we work together to have some fun. Don’t take it too seriously though. It’s being made by Bodgit and Kobble Productions... the clue is in the name!

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“I’m looking for a diverse collection of contributors - so young and old, fit and not so fit, people in running shorts people on mobility scooters, etc.”

Janet added: “If you want to wear fancy dress that would be fantastic but not essential.”

There are some other shots Janet is hoping to source.

She needs footage of children waking up on Christmas Day disappointed because Santa has not been and the same footage of children waking up excited to open their presents.

Janet is also looking for any pictures Herald readers may have of Christmas decorations from last year, both the town’s street decorations and any external decorations on people’s homes or businesses.

It is hoped that, with some community support, the panto will be aired at least a week before Christmas and shared on local social media channels, YouTube and on Sidmouth Library’s website.

If you want to find out more about the shots Janet needs or would like to take part email:

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