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Blue singer Antony Costa to star in Woodville panto Jack and the Beanstalk

You may know him from Blue, but Antony Costa promises to make the crowd see red when he takes on the role of a villain.

We can exclusively reveal the singer-songwriter is taking on the role of the giant’s stooge Fleshcreep in Jack and The Beanstalk, The Woodville’s pantomime later this year.

The 34-year-old said: “I’ve never been to Gravesend before, but I’ve heard it is a lovely little town.

“I’m really looking forward to coming down.”

Antony Costa on stage with Blue
Antony Costa on stage with Blue

With rehearsals starting mid November, Antony will be staying in the area for 10 days of intensive rehearsal before performances begin.

“I’m going to be a mini Gravesend resident, so if people spot me on the street I’m happy to have a chat. I’ll hopefully get down to Bluewater for a bit of shopping as well, and pop in for a coffee at my namesake, Costa.”

Antony has also played Jack before, in the same panto.

“That didn’t take much acting really – I was just my cheeky-chappie self – but being a baddie I think will take a bit more. I’m going to have to actually get into the mindset and think ‘You’re not Ant, you’re Fleshcreep’. There’s a sentence I didn’t think I’d say.

“Obviously the kids have got to have someone to boo, but I’m going to try to be the baddie people love to hate.

“I want to be a bit funny as well, like the villains in 101 Dalmatians; a bit silly, a bit slapstick.”

This is Antony’s fifth panto, and second with Magic Beans’ pantomimes after playing the prince in Cinderella in Dunstable last year.

“I’m really pleased they’ve asked me back. They’re panto geeks and really know their stuff.

“I’m really looking forward to it. Pantos are good fun, and Jack and the Beanstalk is a great show.”

Antony will be joined by Olivier Award-winning West End actress Leanne Jones, who lives in Gravesend and is best known for her acclaimed performance as Tracy Turnblad in Hairspray.

A former West End star and The Voice contestant Leanne Jones, 28, from Gravesend
A former West End star and The Voice contestant Leanne Jones, 28, from Gravesend

She will be playing the panto fairy, and recently returned to the West End to star alongside Antony’s bandmate Simon Webbe in the musical The Three Little Pigs at the Palace Theatre.

Antony said: “I’ve met Leanne before, when she was doing Hairspray and I was in Blood Brothers. She’s absolutely lovely and obviously knows Webby. I’m looking forward to working with her.”

Leanne said she was excited to be performing in her home town, having brought her own family to the Woodville’s Christmas show in previous years.

The Voice finalist Jaz Ellington will make his panto debut as King Crumble. Jaz shot to fame on the first season of the BBC One show, with his performance of John Legend’s Ordinary People.

Much loved panto duo Payne and Pearce will be playing Dame Trott and Silly Billy Trott.

Eleanor Sanders, who wowed audiences with her stunning vocals in the title role of Robin Hood, will play Jack Trott. Lucy Reed, previously seen by Gravesend audiences as Alice in Alice In Wonderland, and Jim in Treasure Island, will play Princess Apricot.

  • Jack and the Beanstalk is at The Woodville from Friday, December 9 until Monday January 2, 2017. Visit www.woodville.co.uk or call 08442 439480 (charges apply).
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