Scenery is in place, ponies groomed and the actors are literally ‘made-up’ as our glittering panto Cinderella has started its run at The Brindley, bringing a little Christmas magic to Runcorn and the surrounding areas.

The rags to riches tale is staged until 15 January at the multi-award winning Halton Borough Council venue. It stars 80s/90s singing sensation Sonia and Miss British Isles, Rebecca Lake.

Sonia, perhaps one of the nation’s most famous red-heads, was only sixteen when she first entered the music business. Whilst playing the Liverpool club circuit, she was spotted by record producer Pete Waterman and an impromptu audition secured a recording contract with Simon Cowell at BMG.

Her debut single You’ll Never Stop Me from Loving You was released in 1989 and shot to number one in the UK selling a staggering 350,000 copies.

In 1991, she was able to develop her song writing talents and released the album Sonia. She also presented Wetter the Better, a Saturday morning children’s TV show. Her next step clearly displayed her versatile voice and genuine love of performing when she was invited by the BBC to be the UK representative in the 1993 Eurovision Song Contest.

She came second to the Irish entry and her single Better The Devil You Know hit the UK charts at number 9 and her album, of the same name, entered the album charts at number 20. Sonia then entered the world of theatre, receiving excellent reviews as she performed with Dennis Waterman in Slice of Saturday Night in London’s West End and the lead role of ‘Sandy’ in Grease, where she performed to a full house and critical acclaim alongside Craig McLachlan and Shane Richie.

They join Desperate Scousewife Charlie Griffiths, local theatre star Andrew Curphey, Romford’s Rikki Stone, a veteran of numerous pantos all over the country and dame Connor Harper, who comes to Runcorn from London, to make his panto debut.

He will play alongside Peter Kosta, who will play the other ugly sister. For several years he was the official life-size Roland Rat, and the Channel Tunnel mascot Marcus Mole.

Prince Charming will be played by actor/model Christopher Pym, originally from Warrington, but working in London after hitting national fame after BBC1’s search for a Joseph, Any Dream Will Do.

It is being staged by Polka Dot Pantomimes on behalf of Halton Borough Council. And comes the year after a record-breaking and critically acclaimed production of Aladdin last year.

Ticket Prices are Children £16, Adults £20, Conc. £19, Family Ticket £65 (2 adults, 2 children), Groups 20 plus £17, Schools £10 (One teacher in 25 goes free, no booking fee). Contact 0151 907 8360 and