The Malta Independent 22 July 2019, Monday

Malcolm Galea: The Man Behind MADC’s New Panto Jack and the Beanstalk

Tuesday, 4 December 2018, 09:00 Last update: about 9 months ago

With just weeks to go until MADC’s new panto goes curtain up at MFCC, Ta Qali, Malcolm Galea talks through his latest panto script, Jack and the Beanstalk.

This December, the much-loved panto-making theatre company MADC will breathe new life into the classic fairytale, Jack and the Beanstalk. Set in Medieval times, young Jack longs to become a famous knight but lacks the money (and courage) to fulfill his dreams. However, things take an unexpected turn when the girl he loves is taken away by giants who have invaded his village - but, no spoilers, we'll stop there.

Well-known panto stalwart Malcolm Galea is the mind behind this year's script, as well as the director of the piece. Asked what fuels his love for panto (with Jack and the Beanstalk being his 10th panto script!) he says, "When creating a theatre piece, I get to make the kind of show that I would personally enjoy watching. In the case of panto it's extra special, since I can really let my imagination run away with me and come up with all kinds of crazy characters and situations. I also enjoy having such a large and dedicated team to work with, which allows me to completely focus on the performances."


Indeed, Jack and the Beanstalk will see a highly-experienced crew come together to create a hilarious, feel-good Christmas show. Maestro Paul Abela and Roger Tirazona will ensure that the music is toe-tapping and fun, while Francesco Nicodeme will be choreographing the cast's dancing and movement. To add to the magic, Ray Farrugia will be creating one of his incredible set designs, and costumes are being designed by none other than Isabel Warrington. 

"This is probably the most interactive panto I've ever written and a lot of this comes from the narrator (played by myself) whose job it is to touch base with the audience at regular intervals. It's essentially just an excuse for me to use some of my stand-up comedy skills!" says Malcolm.

The panto's 'smug and sarcastic' narrator will be joined by Michael Mangion who plays the over-the-top dame, Jack's mother, Lady Frakassat. Jack and the Beanstalk also features an impressive cast of both established actors and newcomers, including Matthew Ben Attard, Katherine Brown, Joe Depasquale, Christina Despott, Rachel Tedesco Triccas, Audrey Scerri and Sean Briffa.

As usual, audiences are in for a wonderful evening bursting with craziness and fun. "We have a really fun story with outrageous characters - including the most gregarious cow you've ever seen and a character played by a puppet - and lots of laughs. Every year I try to outdo my previous panto and, though it gets harder and harder, I do believe that I've managed to pull it off. Come along and see for yourselves," Malcolm concludes.

Jack and the Beanstalk will be performed at MFCC Ta' Qali at 7.30pm on 23, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30 December 2018 and 3, 4, 5 January 2019, with matinee performances at 3pm on 26, 29, 30 December 2018. Booking is now open at Tickets start from €10! Tickets also available at €18, €23 and €26, with reduced rates for children aged 3-11.  Children aged 2 and under enter FREE with a toddler ticket but must have a reserved seat with parents/guardians.


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