Pantomime has a long tradition in British Theatre probably dating back to the middle ages. Its origins go back even further to 16th Century Italy where touring theatre companies used dance, music and buffoonery to the delight of their audiences.

Certain traditions emerged such as the principal boy being played by a girl, the dominant comedic mother and the essential ‘baddie’ and hapless brother (our much loved Denny Twp!). Slapstick was an early development and audience participation was essential.

The Victorian era saw a huge increase in pantomimes the length and breadth of the land and here in Llanelli the Friendship Theatre group have just completed their panto run of ‘Sleeping Beauty’ to full houses and the delight of hundreds of the young and not so young. With all the profits going to local good causes ‘Denny’ and the whole company are deserving of our thanks for brightening up what has been a long and cold winter. One essential part of any Panto is that there’s always a happy ending. Boy gets girl, baddies are overcome and in the end we can’t wait until next year.

Life of course, is not always that clear cut. We may look for peace and contentment for all in our world but more often than not it’s just not there. With countless millions caught up in conflicts and wars, cruel regimes which hold no value of human life and seemingly endless acts of terrorism resulting carnage and death. We may well ask if there ever be world peace or that day will come when irreconcilable differences are dealt with once and for all.

The persistence of suffering in the world can test our faith in a loving God and answers to such questions seem a million miles away. It is then we need to believe that despite the evil that men can do ultimately good will triumph because God will have the final word when the whole drama of life is ended. Then as the Bible proclaims ‘there will be no more death or crying for the former things will have passed away’ The Kingdom will surely have come on earth as it is in heaven.

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