Lincoln Drill Hall is making a return, with a new look and a new name, The Drill.
Doors open to the public next Saturday, with the debut performance being the pantomime Aladdin, which was postponed last year due to COVID-19 guidelines.
The inside of the building has undergone renovations, introducing a new modern look.
The name change is thanks to Lincoln College, who took over the venue after the closure in August 2020.
Staff were made redundant in the following October.
A year on, the cast finally are back doing what they love after a tough year for the entertainment industry.
James Campbell, who plays Widow Crankey, said: “We’re happy to be back working and making some money, and of course panto is so much fun for everyone.”
The closure back in 2020 was due to City of Lincoln Council leaders objecting the annual grant that was given to the Lincoln Drill Hall.
Craig Garner, who plays baddie Abanarzar, has been performing at The Drill for over 14 years. He said that The Drill is like a second home to him.
“I studied at Lincoln College and they’ve taken over this venue. The front of house looks amazing, the audience are in for a treat,” said Craig.
“We’ve had two years off from panto, for me, it was one of the first pieces of theatre I saw, I would encourage parents to bring their children and come along!”
What’s changed from before?
Apart from the name change, a new box office has been introduced as well as a new bar, restaurant and kitchen.
The Drill plans to close again in the spring for further renovations and is letting the cast of Aladdin take to the stage after missing a Christmas performance last year.
This is the first pantomime with a speaking part for Georgia Gallagher, playing Princess Jasmine. She couldn’t contain her excitement to get performing.
“I think this panto is the perfect first show to open up the drill hall,” she explains.
“Apparently I’ve had more costumes than any other princess before!”
The pantomime Aladdin will commence on the 11th December and will run all the way up until Christmas.