ALLOA'S Forefront Stage School are gearing up for their annual pantomime early in 2019, following a year of successful performances.

Having wowed the crowds with the likes of The Greatest Show and Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, final preparations will soon be underway for the upcoming Dick McWhittington show.

The group have ten performances planned throughout January, and have given the Advertiser some hints about what people can expect ahead of the new year.

Amber Rennie, the school's principal, said: "I like to keep the pantomime fresh every year.

"Dick McWhittington was an opportunity to demonstrate the skills of the cast and put on a performance that was a bit different from recent years.

"At first I was a little nervous about it, but the script is absolutely hilarious and the kids have really brought it to life."

Dick McWhittington is a classic Christmas pantomime, centring on a wealthy merchant's rise out of poverty after selling his cat to a rat infested country.

Commenting on the story, Amber said: "It’s a timeless classic, but with a very local feel.

"Dick goes on an adventure, only to be faced with a decision to make: follow his dreams, or return home to save his friends and family?

"The show then takes an unexpected oversees twist, with new lands and cultures to spice up the performance."

Preparations for January have already been underway for several months, and Amber claimed everything has gone brilliantly so far.

She said: "Rehearsals started back in August and we’ve been working hard to nail down this year’s performance; however; we’re going into our festive break feeling really confident.

"We return after Christmas to start out dress rehearsals with the show commencing from January 4."

With a school of over 150 pupils and only 80 spaces available, competition was tough for a place in the show.

Amber listed some of the top performers that landed a role in the festive panto.

She said: "Ross Turnbull (Queen Rat) is the oldest of the cast and has grown so much as a performer over the past five years with us.

"Then there’s Hannah Ross (Senga McScruff) who’s getting quite the reputation for being the sassiest girl in town.

"Nadia Smith (Dick McWhittington) has been a protagonist in our shows for several years now.

"It’s also the first show for a few and you’ll spot the potential of the children as young as five on the stage."

Anyone looking for more information, or to buy tickets for the upcoming shows, should call 0759 9977 732.