One is a global superstar, famous for appearing in blockbuster films and dating some of the world's most beautiful women. The other is Shropshire's favourite dame, who has topped the bill at Shrewsbury's Theatre Severn for a decade and is known for his slap-stick humour and love of greasepaint. Shoppers in Shrewsbury thought they were in for a treat when banners for the annual pantomime went up in the town.
Brad Fitt: Pantomime Practitioner and Producer
When he told the cast of the acclaimed drawing-room whodunnit that he had to come to Shrewsbury for a flying visit a couple of weeks ago, they thought it was in his role as company manager for the show. He has spent time front and centre of the stage in his various roles as the pantomime dame for the past nine years, but Brad is more at home in the wings, being the lynchpin between the company and the producers. Although he never trained as an actor, he has carved a name out for himself as one of the most acclaimed dames in the country. He started his career at Bristol Old Vic and has moved around the country over the years. But that is just what I do. The current multi-award winning version was produced by Stephen Daldry for the National Theatre and it has been seen by an estimated four million people worldwide. The family is visited by a man calling himself Inspector Goole, who questions the family about the suicide of a young working-class woman in her mid twenties.
The other is a little known Norfolk-born pantomime performer who has recently played the role of Mother Goose on stage. Shoppers in Shrewsbury thought Christmas had come early when banners for the annual festive panto announced Brad Pitt would be starring. However, Hollywood royalty will not be coming to Shropshire, and they will instead have to settle for local favourite Brad Fitt.
Date: 25 November Reporter: Simon Sladen. Simon Sladen speaks to producer and pantomime practitioner Brad Fitt about his theatrical career. It was in this role as company manager that Fitt met and worked for Christopher Biggins and it was Biggins who introduced him to the world of pantomime. Not only did he want Fitt to write, but he also wanted him to direct the show as well. Having written and directed the Cambridge Arts pantomime for three consecutive seasons, it was soon time for Fitt to take the next step, this time into the spotlight. However, once onstage Fitt relaxed and all was fine. He has fond memories of the theatre and its audiences, but it was time to move on. Although Fitt no longer writes for Cambridge, he is still the pantomime writer in residence at the Towngate Theatre, Basildon where marks his fifth for director, choreographer, producer and performer Simon Fielding. Fitt is full of admiration for the team at Basildon, where Fielding, who he met whilst working in the West End about fifteen years ago, always plays Principal Boy.