Sleeping Beauty has become the most successful ever single production to be put on at Clacton’s Princes Theatre.
The popular panto starring X Factor’s Stevi Ritchie pulled in 12,467 people – which was 50 more than the 12,417 achieved by Jack and the Beanstalk in 2014.
It is the third time that audience figures have topped 12,000 with Peter Pan achieving 12,143 in 2013.
All the figures have now been totted up after Sunday’s final performance and attendances have been confirmed over the three week run.
Audiences have continued to rise fairly steadily since professional pantos were first introduced in 2009 when 5,618 tickets were sold.
It has been an impressive success story and Polka Dot Pantomimes, who are based in Lincolnshire, have produced the last six in association with Tendring District Council (TDC) which operates the Princes Theatre.
Tanya Ferguson, Tendring District Council’s (TDC) Cabinet Member for Tourism and Culture, said that it is tremendous news.
“Working with Polka Dot we now have a well tried and tested formula which continues to put people on the seats and proves popular year after year,” she said.
“Panto is still a tradition which is loved and appreciated in this country and attracts all ages.
“This year we had a strong West End cast with Stevi Ritchie, who lives in Colchester, topping the bill and I think that helped us squeeze past the previous best.”
Jack and the Beanstalk was the first pantomime under a new contract with the company and next year’s panto has already been announced as Beauty and the Beast.