Acting legend Sir Ian McKellen to star in Salford pantomime with John Bishop

This is going to be so fun.

Daisy Jackson Daisy Jackson - 29th December 2022

Sir Ian McKellen and John Bishop are both set to star in the pantomime of Mother Goose when it arrives in Salford this spring.

Sir Ian, who is originally from the north west and is a bona fide legend of stage and screen, will star as Mother Goose in the smash-hit panto.

Meanwhile comedian John Bishop will take up the role of Vic Goose as the production visits The Lowry.

The pair will play as husband and wife on the stage, acting out a story where the couple run an animal sanctuary for waifs and strays inside an abandoned Debenhams.

But when Cilla the Goose flies in, everything gets turned on its head.


The show promises ‘impeccably constructed mayhem’ including tap-dancing puppets.

It says: “This hilarious family-friendly mother of all pantos is the ultimate theatrical feast full of fun, farce and more than a couple of surprises that will make you honk out loud.”


Also starring in the pantomime alongside Sir Ian McKellen and John Bishop will be Anna-Jane Casey as Cilla The Goose, Oscar Conlon-Morrey as Jack, Simbi Akande as Jill, Sharon Ballard as Good Fairy Encanta and Karen Mavundukure as Evil Fairy Malignia.

The cast is completed by Mairi Barclay, Adam Brown, Gabriel Fleary, Becca Francis, Shailan Gohil, Richard Leeming, Genevieve Nicole and Laura Tyrer.

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It is written by Jonathan Harvey (Coronation Street, Gimme Gimme Gimme) and directed by award-winning director Cal McCrystal. Set and costume design is by Liz Ascroft, choreography by Lizzi Gee, lighting design by Prema Mehta, sound design by Ben Harrison and puppet design and creation by Chris Barlow. Casting is by Anne Vosser and the Production Manager is Ben Arkell.


Mother Goose will be at The Lowry in Salford from Wednesday 5 to Sunday 9 Aoril 2023.

Tickets are on sale to Lowry members today, and on general sale from Wednesday 4 January.

For more information on Lowry memberships visit:

Featured image: Manuel Harlan