Christmas may have only just been and gone and whether you've over-indulged or exercised impressive restraint with the mince pies, it's that time of year where we turn our gaze to the future and ponder what the New Year may bring. We caught up with the cast of Beauty & the Beast
, TBTL's uplifting Christmas production running until 12 January, and asked how they've been spending their time between performances and what their New Year's resolutions are – perhaps they might inspire you to make some of your own?
Eleanor Sutton, who plays Beauty, spent her Christmas at home with her mum, dad and grandparents in Macclesfield and described her family gathering as "probably quite standard - a free pass to drink alcohol with breakfast, lots of tinsel and a squabble over the best method for roast potatoes. We also only let Grandad set the pudding alight because he used to be a fireman, so we all feel safer that way”.
In between shows Eleanor braved the cold and went canoeing from Nichol End Marine on Derwentwater with other cast members, describing it as, "Exhilarating! A great way of gaining a unique perspective of the surrounding fells”. She has already kicked off her resolution planning by making a list of books which she wants to read in 2019. She says she'd "also love to brush up on my guitar skills, but, I say that every year…!”
The production also stars Max Gold who plays father to six siblings including Beauty in the show. His real-life family, including his wife, children, and sister's family all joined him in Keswick for Christmas. He says, "A festive highlight has been hearing the children's laughter during the show as well as the Victorian Christmas market in Keswick, especially the amazing human fruit machine.”
His New Year's resolution is to keep his carbon foot print as low as possible, and is looking forward to returning to London where he is Director of Brixton Youth Theatre and will start rehearsals for a Chinese New Year show, celebrating the Year of the Pig in February.
Joe Richardson, who plays the Beast's servant amongst other roles, has been spending lots of time browsing the many shops in Keswick including the antique shops which he loves. He says, "We're a pretty active group and have been taking part in high intensity interval training classes in the mornings led by Jonny Weldon from the cast. My New Year's resolution would be to keep this up.”
A traditional Christmas for Charlie Cameron who plays Beauty's sister, Marie-Claire, is spent "doing a Christmas show”. As a child of actors, it's the norm in her household and she says, "There's nothing else I'd rather be doing over Christmas. One year I wasn't working and I thought I would have time for all the normal traditions, like making decorations, cooking food and wrapping presents. Instead I didn't know what to do with myself!”
She's been making the most of the Christmas Season in Keswick by spending her time walking and running, "enjoying the unbelievable ‘heaven-on-earth' scenery”. Her plans for New Year's Day are not for the faint-hearted; "Joe and I are planning on swimming in the lake. I live on a boat on the river and I love wild swimming. I mainly swim in the summer time though, but I love starting the year with something positive and challenging. I think it will be a great way to start the year”.
Gareth Cassidy, who plays Beauty's older brother, Philippe, has led many walking expeditions with the cast during his time in Keswick so far including conquering Causey Pike, Catbells and Glaramara to name a few. He's found living in Keswick to be a real treat, "I'm 30 seconds walk from the Alhambra Cinema which has done well to occupy my spare time and there's been plenty of eating and drinking too, the cake and coffee in Merienda is belting!”
He says, "As far as resolutions go, it's boring but I try to avoid them! I think that any time is a good time to instigate a positive change for yourself. Do it now, or in June, or in February. Just do what makes you happy. This New Year, I'm doing just that and looking forward to performing in The 39 Steps
at the New Vic in February.”
Ashley Gerlach, who plays the Beast, has spent Christmas in Liverpool with family and "enjoyed eating my body weight in food!”. In his spare time he's been walking the fells and visiting various pubs to sample the warming winter food. His New Year's resolution is to keep fit and "be ready for all of the amazing work I'm surely going to get next year!”.
There are only two more weeks to catch the 2018 Christmas Season actors who are performing at Theatre by the Lake until 12 January in Beauty & the Beast
. Find out more at http://www.theatrebythelake.com/