Honourary Mackem Faye Tozer to step into Empire panto role

Faye Tozer is returning to the Empire

Faye Tozer is returning to the Empire

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Actress and former Steps singer Faye Tozer will star in this year's Sunderland Empire panto - oh yes she will!

It's been announced that Faye, who lives in Boldon with her Sunderland-born husband Michael, will star as the Good Fairy in Sleeping Beauty.

Andrew Agnew, far right, as Muddles in Snow White

Andrew Agnew, far right, as Muddles in Snow White

She'll appear on stage this Christmas alongside Cbeebies and Balamory favourite Andrew Agnew and radio, screen and stage star Bobby Crush from Benidorm.

It will be a return to the home stage for Faye, who considers herself an honourary Mackem, after she won rave reviews playing Lina Lamont in Singing in the Rain in 2014.

During her time in Steps, Faye and her bandmates sold more than 20 million records across the globe, and reunited in 2011 hit Sky Living TV shows Steps - The Reunion and On the Road again.

She began her theatrical career with Andrew Lloyd Webber's Tell me on a Sunday and has also appeared in Love Shack, Dial M for Murder and Over the Rainbow.

Bobby Crush

Bobby Crush

Faye is joined by Andrew Agnew who also returns to the Sunderland Empire after playing Muddles in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs alongside Su Pollard and Matt Lapinskas in 2014.

This year, the actor, who is best known for playing PC Plum in Balamory, will juggle the roles of Silly Billy and panto director.

Joining Andrew and Faye will be Bobby Crush. Bobby first came into the public eye after six winning appearances on Opportunity Knocks in the '70s. Since then he has had numerous stage roles and his own TV show. Most recently he took on the role of Billy Sparkle in the new series of Benidorm.

Ben Phillips, Sunderland Empire general manager, said: “We look forward to hosting another spectacular family pantomime from UK Productions and are delighted that Faye and Andrew will be returning to the Sunderland Empire stage this festive season with the mesmerising and classic tale of Sleeping Beauty.”

*Sleeping Beauty is at Sunderland Empire from December 9-31. Tickets are available from the Box Office on High Street West, via the ticket centre 0844 871 3022* or www.ATGtickets.com/Sunderland.

*calls cost up to 7p per minute plus standard network charges. Booking and transaction fees may apply to telephone and online bookings.