For most, the festive season ends when the brittle Christmas tree is flung onto the pile of fifty others at the recycling centre. For a select few though, the season continues for a number of weeks as the traditional Christmas panto performances run well into the month of January.
My personal fave has always been the Lyons Tea pantomime at the Liberty Hall, which this year sees Cinderella strut her stuff. The script has been adapted by Karl Broderick, who also penned Ireland's entry song in last year's Eurovision Song Contest, it has the right balance of humour for children and adults - think of those hilarious nuggets in The Simpsons that kids just don't get.
Simon Delaney, who played Michael in the hit sitcom Bachelors Walk, directs the panto (his hugely popular series Chain Reactions is currently on RTE) and the set has been designed by Dave Benson, responsible for the incredible Titanic, The Musical set at the West End. Among the stars of the show are TV3 presenter Alan Hughes, Linda Martin, Fair City actor David Mitchell, veteran stage actor Joe Conlon and singer Sinead Mulvey.
After a gruelling 6 week run the cast and crew will be taking a well-earned rest (Alan Hughes is heading off to the sunny climate of the Canary Islands, where he will be staying an extra week after filming a feature for Ireland AM). Two that will be spending more time together though are Prince Charming, played by 25-year-old Niall Sheehy, and 20 year-old dancer Anna Leigh. They met when rehearsals began back in November and have been an item since.
The show ends on the 28th (with the finale traditionally being attended by a host of well-known names) and tickets are pretty much sold out until then. You could always try your luck at www.centralticketbureau.com.