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Panto pirate hits right note in chorus

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She may be treading the boards as a pantomime pirate at City Hall, but 13-year-old Erin Jones has rather more academic plans for the future.

“I'd like to study medicine or law at university,” said Erin, a student at Bermuda High School.

This year's Christmas panto, Treasure Island by Richard Lloyd, made its debut at the Earl Cameron Theatre on Thursday night. Performed by the Bermuda Musical & Dramatic Society, it will run for 12 shows until Saturday, including three weekend matinees.

Erin is a member of the adult chorus, the swashbuckling pirate mob led by the dastardly Long John Slither.

“Rehearsals were really intense this year, and as we've got closer to the show, it gets a lot more intense,” she said after the opening performance, adding that she is managing to squeeze in her school homework during lunch breaks.

Despite her exhausting schedule, Erin's spirits remain buoyed thanks to the family feel of putting on a show.

“You're all moving towards one goal and you meet people you'd never meet outside of the show,” she said.

“You help each other out and you become like a family.”

Speaking of family, Erin is sharing the stage for Treasure Island with her father, Phillip Jones, who plays the flamboyant dame Mrs Ladd in true cross-dressing, pantomime tradition.

Erin remembers going to see her dad in Beauty and the Beast in the same theatre as a two-year-old.

“He played the candelabra,” Erin said. “I was screaming out for him during the show and wondering why he wasn't talking to me. In the end, my mom had to take me outside.”

Although the father-daughter duo do not perform any songs together in this production, unlike last year's Pied Piper, Erin suggested that Mr Jones tell a joke about Bermudian driving habits — a reference that went down well with the audience.

Asked whether she ever got stage fright before going on, Erin said: “If I've prepared, then no; it's more, just, excitement. If I haven't prepared then I get nervous and just hope it's going to go right.”

• For more information, visit www.bmds.bm. Tickets, $35, are available by calling 278-1500 or from www.ptix.bm

Hectic schedule: Erin Jones is managing to work rehearsals and shows around her schoolwork (Photograph by Adam Zacharias)
Panto time: Treasure Island is being staged at City Hall Theatre

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Published December 07, 2015 at 8:00 am (Updated December 07, 2015 at 8:32 am)

Panto pirate hits right note in chorus

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