Emergency cover ensures show can go on after Horsham's Aladdin tests positive

Horsham’s panto can go on after a last-minute Covid-enforced substitute was found.

Will Carey as John in Peter Pan 2008
Will Carey as John in Peter Pan 2008

Will Carey has stepped in to provide emergency cover as Aladdin – ensuring no more performances are lost.

Spokeswoman Tracey Grubb said: “There was a big boo for Covid when Toby Miles, who plays the lead of Aladdin in this year’s Capitol panto, tested positive in the run-up to Christmas.

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“The Capitol had to cancel four sold-out performances at very short notice this week, with customers being offered refunds or tickets for alternative performances. Head of production Matthew Effemey knew a replacement had to be sought and approached local professional actor Will Carey, represented by Michelle Blair Management, to find out if he could step up to the challenge of providing emergency cover as Aladdin in this year’s pantomime.

“Will trained at The Guildford School of Acting and has worked in theatre and TV having performed in several London shows including Cruise (Duchess Theatre, London), Grandpa’s Great Escape (UK Arena Tour), The Dreamers (Abbey Road Studios) and It’s Only Life (Union Theatre). He’s also appeared on TV as Young David Cassidy in Autopsy, The Last Hours of David Cassidy.

“Will is no stranger to The Capitol stage having performed as John in the 2008 production of Peter Pan which starred Mark Curry and Sarah Jane Honeywell. Having only joined Aladdin Wednesday morning for one day of intensive rehearsals, Will stepping up at such short notice shows his versatility as a performer.

“It’s only the second time a pantomime has had to be cancelled in The Capitol’s history. The first time was back in 2005 when members of the cast who were staying in Dorking were completely cut off by snow.”

Matthew said: “We are all absolutely delighted that Will has joined our cast to allow the show to go on and we want to thank our customers for their continued support during such a challenging time for our industry. This is just another example of how remarkably resilient the theatre industry is and reiterates that we’re ready to deal with any obstacle thrown our way. Will rehearsed brilliantly and we’re confident the audience are going to love him being part of our show! Toby is feeling fine and we hope he can be back on stage from Tuesday, December 28. Everyone at the Capitol all wish him well”

Aladdin runs until New Year’s Eve, December 31 and full details of performances can be found online at www.thecapitolhorsham.com