Kerry takes centre stage in bid to help West Cheshire's dementia sufferers - Brio Leisure

5 November 2018

Ex-Atomic Kitten star Kerry Katona will play a leading role in two special performances of a pantomime aimed at those affected by dementia and autism in West Cheshire.

The singer and media personality has joined forces with Brio Leisure to help those with sensory communication or other needs enjoy the festive season to the full.

Katona will star in both a dementia friendly and a ‘relaxed’ performance of Cinderella at Northwich Memorial Court. The dementia friendly show is on December 12 at 2pm and the ‘relaxed’ performance on December 22 at 10.30am.

The shows will be adapted from normal pantomime performances with no sudden loud noises or pyrotechnics.

Brio Managing Director Elly McFahn, said Brio had worked with medical experts supporting those with sensory issues, autism and dementia-related illnesses to understand the challenges;.

“Crowds, loud music, flashing lights and applause can all be unsettling and cause anxiety.

Our ‘relaxed’ performance allows us to present a much-loved pantomime in a different way. With the production team’s support we’ve designed a performance that overcomes these challenges,” she added.
Audience members will be free to exit and re-enter the auditorium when they like and there will be designated quiet and changing spaces outside.
Brio staff will also be putting up Dementia friendly signage in the building for the performance. 

Cinderella producer, Anton Benson has been working on making the shows dementia and autism friendly explains, “I am delighted to be able to offer dementia friendly and relaxed performances and hope it will enable those who may not have otherwise been able to see our panto an opportunity to enjoy the show in an environment more suitable to their needs.”

Brio, the community interest company which operates public leisure centres across the borough, is also introducing special ‘dementia friendly’ film screenings at Northwich Memorial Court.

The Vintage Matinees will start on 1 November with a screening of the award-winning war film Darkest Hour.

“We don’t want families missing out on what can be treasured memories of their loved ones. These showings will take place in a relaxed and quiet environment and afternoon tea can be purchased too.” added Mrs McFahn.

Northwich Memorial Court will also host a Christmas Memories show on November 29, with a nostalgic trip back in time with music through the years. Discounted ticket prices are being offered for those who want to enjoy the pantomime, film screening and the Christmas Memories show. Registered carers go free to any of the shows, when attending with a guest in care.

To find out any more information email boxoffice@brioleisure.org, or visit brioentertainment.org to book.

 

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