Starlight shines on Torbay Hospital youngsters
An interactive performance of Dick Whittington was recently staged at Torbay Hospital’s Louisa Cary Ward by Starlight Children’s Foundation.
The pantomime’s four actors danced, dazzled and sang for the young patients, their families and the staff.
For children who are ill in hospital, school holidays can be a particularly gloomy time and, to bring smiles to these children, Starlight Children’s Foundation has been staging performances of Dick Whittington in children’s wards throughout the UK this summer.
The pantomime has been staged exclusively for Starlight by the interactive theatre group The Panto Company and is visiting 100 hospitals and hospices over the course of an eight week tour.
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Every year, Starlight provides entertainment and distraction to over half a million poorly children and this summer’s panto will give thousands of poorly children the chance to boo and hiss at the evil King Rat and cheer Dick Wittington along on his brave quest, all from the safety of the hospital ward.
Natalie Gilardoni, Play Specialist for South Devon Healthcare Foundation Trust, the Trust responsible for running Torbay Hospital, said, “Every year we look forward to the arrival of Starlight’s panto and the entertainment and distraction it brings. Play offers poorly children a way of escaping the pain and anxiety they might be feeling as a result of their illness, and Starlight’s panto is always a great dose of fun for our young patients.”
Claire Farr, who plays Alice Fitzwarren in Dick Whittington, said, “We hope that the panto gives every child in hospital something exciting to look forward to and it helps to take their minds off their illness. The panto is jam-packed with fun and entertainment and our focus is on providing a really engaging show that will keep every audience member completely absorbed!”
The pantomime is just one way Starlight improves the lives of seriously and terminally ill children in the UK. Starlight also grants once-in-a-lifetime wishes to children of all ages to restore a little joy into their lives. In doing so, many happy memories are created for the children and their families, whatever the future holds.