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Coronavirus

The Crickets at Christmas – courtesy of Jimmy and May 150 150 mhamer

The Crickets at Christmas – courtesy of Jimmy and May

Here is an idea for a Christmas Show, with applied social distancing in Theatres and venues! Just ring us on 01706 353545 for a booking!

Jimmy Cricket and his wife May have come up with a special Christmas show format in place of the usual panto.

The United Kingdom continues to remain under coronavirus restrictions.

It means it is highly unlikely theatres will be able to stage traditional pantomimes over the Christmas and New Year period.

So Jimmy and May – who goes under the stage name of May Marion – are offering venues, The Crickets at Christmas.

The photo above is of a poster on the homepage of Jimmy’s webpage.

Jimmy explained: “Panto just like Santa, Christmas trees and turkey is a mainstay of our festive season.

“A wonderful opportunity for the whole family to visit the theatre.

Two-hander

“It’s also a two-way process when theatres can put the house-full signs up and take in a bit of cash to help them get through the rest of the year.

“It’s going to be sad this year to pass some of our local theatres and not hear that laughter and applause.

“To help any theatres that don’t want to remain dark and keep a link open to their regular patrons, my wife and I have devised a two-hander Christmas show.

“It will follow government guidelines with social distancing etc, so everyone can feel safe.

“It can be a 90-minute straight through show or an hour each half with an interval.

“Because of limited capacity, we’re happy to do two shows.

“It’s something to keep us going until please God we can all get back to normal.

“Stay safe and healthy everyone!

“Just ring us on 01706 353545 for a booking!”

Also read: What it might be tough to stage pantos this year…

Why it might be tough to stage pantos this year… 150 150 mhamer

Why it might be tough to stage pantos this year…

Dick Whittington cast

Jimmy played Professor Fitzwarren in Dick Whittington in both Ellesmere Port and his adopted hometown of Rochdale across the 2017 festive season

Jimmy Cricket has provided a light-hearted view as to why pantos would be tricky to produce during coronavirus.

The famous funnyman has appeared in many pantos across the decades.

There is a possibility that some may take place over Christmas if the national restrictions caused by the coronavirus pandemic are not too strict at that time.

Indoor theatres, ice rinks and soft play centres were allowed to reopen in mid-August in most part of the country.

The government placed the United Kingdom into lockdown in late March.

Some areas still have tougher measures in place than others.

Jimmy joked: “It would be hard to do panto this year.

“Cinderella would have to keep a safe social distance from Prince Charming.

“Every time Aladdin rubs the lamp he’ll have to run off stage to wash his hands.

“And it would have to be Snow White and the Six Dwarfs. Well we couldn’t have Sneezy!”

His social media post attracted some comments, including the following:

Saw u a few year back when you done a Christmas show in wisbech. Throughly enjoyed it and grew up watching you on prime time Saturday night tv

He’s 2 meters behind you! Oh no he isn’t!

1st class, loved watching you as a child

:: Jimmy is appearing again at the Lyndene Hotel in Blackpool.

He also has a show at the Bridlington Spa theatre on Sunday 27 September.

Book tickets for the show here

Also read: Reunion with panto co-star in Clacton-on-Sea

Bridlington Spa: Back from lockdown to laughing! 150 150 mhamer

Bridlington Spa: Back from lockdown to laughing!

Jimmy Cricket is back at the Bridlington Spa later this month.

Looking forward to my return visit to the wonderful #SpaTheatreBridlington as they reopen their doors with social distancing in place!

The popular Northern Irish comedian appears at the East Yorkshire venue on Sunday 27 September (6pm).

Jimmy posted about his return to the theatre on social media.

He said: “Looking forward to my return visit to the wonderful #SpaTheatreBridlington as they reopen their doors with social distancing in place”

The theatre’s website says the following about Jimmy’s return:

Game on….Cricket is back!

It is Jimmy Cricket – the Comedian, with his inimitable style of humour, headlining in what is always a family friendly show, at Bridlington Spa on Sunday the 27th of September 2020.

Jimmy Cricket is one of the UK’s most loved Irish Comedians, having made a host of televisions and radio appearances throughout the last four decades.

Jimmy says, “This virus has cost the lives of so many people and brought untold heartache and misery to their families.

“It’s going to take a while for us all to get over this.

Economically theatres have been hit especially hard so it’s so good to see the Spa Theatre opening its doors to help keep people’s spirits up during these difficult times.”

Speaking of which, when the total lockdown came into effect in March Jimmy posted a joke a day on social media, (Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin), to cheer everybody up.

Government guidelines

“Before I knew it I’d done 100 jokes,” said Jimmy.

“So I thought that would be a good goal to finish on.

“You can’t beat the feedback you get from a live audience and the Spa is one of my favourite theatres.

“The show will follow Government guidelines.

“People will keep two Wellie Boot strides away from each other and even the letter from my Mammy will be disinfected.

“Even though there will be restrictions on numbers with seating spaced out, families will be able to sit together. I’m so looking forward to it.”

Indoor theatres, ice rinks and soft play centres were allowed to reopen in mid-August as lockdown restrictions continue to ease.

The government placed the United Kingdom into lockdown in late March.

Some areas still have tougher measures in place than others.

Book tickets for the show here

Also read: Jimmy Cricket thanks everyone at the Bridlington Spa

Coronavirus pandemic: The next jam night is cancelled 150 150 mhamer

Coronavirus pandemic: The next jam night is cancelled

Pictures from one of Jimmy's jam nights in 2019

Pictures from one of Jimmy’s jam nights in 2019

Jimmy Cricket has cancelled the next scheduled ‘jam’ night at a parish centre in Rochdale because of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

He says in a message to regular show goers he has made the decision “with great sadness”.

But he adds: “We will continue to monitor the situation and we hope to be able to resume our shows as soon as it is safe to do so!”

It comes amid the continuing restrictions first imposed in March across the UK because of coronavirus.

Famous funnyman Jimmy and his wife May host an night of entertainment every couple of months in Rochdale.

It takes place in the lounge area of St Vincent’s RC parish centre in Norden.

They invite different guests who perform free of charge.

It started more than a decade ago as an opportunity for Jimmy and other performers to try out new routines.

At every event,  there is a raffle and the selling of refreshments, with all proceeds donated to a chosen charity.

The popular comedian has nicknamed those who regularly support these evenings as ‘Jimmy’s Jammers’.

Jimmy has in the past few years alternated hosting the jam nights with good friend and fellow entertainer Eric Devereaux.

‘Unprecedented times’

He messaged the regular jammers this weekend to confirm the planned show in September had been cancelled.

There have not been any shows for the past six months because of coronavirus.

His message read:

“Hi Jammers

We hope everyone is safe and healthy, and that you have managed to keep your spirits up, and have not let the isolation get you down to much!

Just an update in regard to the lockdown situation.

We are indeed living in unprecedented times, never before in the history of showbusiness has all Variety Acts and Theatres ever had to cancel all their shows for the safety of the audience!

This is why our shows at St Vincent’s Parish Centre has not been able to go ahead folks!

Most of us fall into the vulnerable age group, so it is with great sadness that we have to cancel the September 2020 show.

We will continue to monitor the situation and we hope to be able to resume our shows as soon as it is safe to do so!

Meanwhile stay safe and we all look forward to the day when this is but a memory for us all, as we consign it to the history books!

Sending Love and Best Wishes to you all from

Jimmy & May & Eric & Gloria & Kath & Pauline”

Also read: Rochdale jam night is ‘lovely charity evening’

Coronavirus pandemic: We can do this together!

Losing the Grand Theatre in Blackpool would be a ‘tragedy’ 150 150 mhamer

Losing the Grand Theatre in Blackpool would be a ‘tragedy’

Jimmy Cricket says the closure of the iconic Grand Theatre in Blackpool would be a "tragedy" for future generationsJimmy Cricket says the closure of the iconic Grand Theatre in Blackpool would be a “tragedy” for future generations.

The theatre, which was almost demolished in 1972, could be closed because of the effects of the coronavirus pandemic.

Management warned it would shut unless the government intervened.

Most of the 57 staff were furloughed during the lockdown.

They could be left redundant when the job-saving scheme ends on 31 October.

A charitable trust has run the theatre since 1972, when local campaigners saved it from the bulldozers.

Among them were entertainers such as Sir Ken Dodd and BBC broadcaster Alistair Cooke.

It reopened in March 1981 with a performance of The Merchant of Venice starring Timothy West and Prunella Scales.

Like other provincial theatres which depend largely on box office receipts to keep going, the venue has had no income since the lockdown began.

All tickets were refunded for cancelled shows and plays.

We must all get together

The theatre, which first opened in 1894, had applied for a £500,000 government grant to keep it going until it might be able to put shows on in January.

However, if social distancing measures were still in place then, it would not make the shows viable and also the money would have run out.

Jimmy said: “We must all get together to save the Grand in Blackpool folks.

“To deprive future generations of this wonderful theatre would be a tragedy.”

His post on Twitter attracted hundreds of likes and retweets as well as some comments.

Also read: Grand Theatre in Blackpool hosts charity concert

External link: Blackpool’s Grand Theatre facing closure amid coronavirus pandemic

Jovial joker Jimmy joins Jive Aces for ‘JiveStream’ 150 150 mhamer

Jovial joker Jimmy joins Jive Aces for ‘JiveStream’

Hi folks! Why not join us this coming Monday on Facebook, as six aces and a joker share some chat and swing live on Facebook, looking forward to working again with these internationally acclaimed group of guys, (Ian, Vince, John, Alex, Ken, Peter), the Jive Aces

Jimmy Cricket is joining the Jive Aces as a special guest on their daily virtual show.

The UK music band present a ‘JiveStream’ every day during the coronavirus lockdown.

Tomorrow’s episode (Monday 3 August) will be their 140th and features our Jimmy.

The performance begins at 8.30pm.

Popular comic Jimmy tweeted: “Hi folks! Why not join us this coming Monday on Facebook, as six aces and a joker share some chat and swing live on Facebook.

“Looking forward to working again with these internationally acclaimed group of guys, (Ian, Vince, John, Alex, Ken, Peter).”

The Jive Aces say ‘JiveStream’ is “an hour of swingin’ music, quality banter, celebrity call-ins, prize draw giveaways and utter stupidity every day during the lock from 8:30pm UK time”.

You can watch the show on YouTube, Facebook or Twitch at the links below:

http://www.facebook.com/jiveaces/live

http://www.youtube.com/jiveaces/live

http://www.twitch.tv/jiveaces

Wikipedia says the band have long been recognised as one of the top swing bands in the world.

They have performed in more than 40 countries.

The June 2015 issue of Vintage Rock magazine described the group as the “UK’s number one jive and swing band”.

The six-member group were formed in 1989 and were Britain’s Got Talent semi-finalists in 2012.

They have released 11 albums and performed at numerous music festivals.

Also read: Tea on the green in Exeter with the Jive Aces

Hi folks! Why not join us this coming Monday on Facebook, as six aces and a joker share some chat and swing live on Facebook, looking forward to working again with these internationally acclaimed group of guys, (Ian, Vince, John, Alex, Ken, Peter), called the Jive Aces

Jimmy’s plea to fellow funnymen to help save live comedy 150 150 mhamer

Jimmy’s plea to fellow funnymen to help save live comedy

To all professional comedians, join the challenge to post a photo of you in your job. Just a picture, no description. The goal is to flood social media with our profession. Copy the text and post Performing arts #savelivecomedy

Save Live Comedy
Jimmy Cricket has been encouraging his fellow comedians to help save live comedy.
A survey conducted in June 2020 suggested the comedy industry was on the brink of collapse.
It revealed a third of comedy venues believe they will be forced to close within the next six months.
And over 45% of the industry have seriously thought about leaving comedy because of the coronavirus pandemic.
There are claims it runs the risk of being forgotten by emergency government arts funding.
People are being urged to sign an open letter to the UK government.

The Save Comedy Live website says it believes that comedy is art and should be treated as such.

It asks for several things, including that comedy is treated on a par with the rest of the performing arts sector by government and funding bodies.

This includes having the same access to the Cultural Rescue Package.

It also requests a clear timeline for reopening venues without social distancing, taking into account official guidance.

‘Flood social media’

The fear is that if live comedy industry is not supported immediately, the sector will risk disappearing as an art form.

Famous Northern Irish funnyman Jimmy tweeted: “To all professional comedians, join the challenge to post a photo of you in your job.

“Just a picture, no description. The goal is to flood social media with our profession. Copy the text and post Performing arts#savelivecomedy.”

Jimmy accompanied the words with the post above right featuring himself, Frank Carson, Duncan Norvelle, Norman Collier and Paul Adams.

The Live Comedy Association said: “British live comedy is in crisis – let’s #SaveLiveComedy!
“1) Sign the open letter to the UK government & arts funders at savelivecomedy.co.uk
“2) Tweet a memorable live comedy experience with the hashtag #SaveLiveComedy.”
British live comedy is in crisis - let’s #SaveLiveComedy!