March 6, 2015, by offcampus

International Family Link: A Pantomime

We are delighted to once again welcome participants in the International Office’s International Family Link scheme to the Off Campus blog to share their experiences of the scheme. Today we hear from Yishu Wang (Elsa) and Trevor Wright, her host:

I have really enjoyed getting to know my hosts, Mr and Mrs Wright. They are really friendly and hospitable. My friend and I were invited to their home. It is a beautiful and peaceful community.

Mrs Wright welcomed me at the front door with their dog Stan (he performed like a real gentleman). There was a real fireplace in the living room, which made you feel warm and comfortable! Our hosts talked to us about British culture, lifestyle and our evening’s entertainment; a pantomime called, Dick Whittington, which our host Mr Wright was performing in.  We also pointed out, our hometown in the atlas and introduced some culture and habits in China. Then we enjoyed a delicious dinner.  During dinner, Mrs Wright told us about a famous British homemade pie. We ate the cakes we brought as pudding (our host told me that every cake or dessert which is eaten after dinner can be called a pudding). Then we went to attend the pantomime.

The Pearly King and Queen

The Pearly King and Queen

The play was over my expectation so much. Mr and Mrs Wright told me they were amateur players, but I would more like to describe them as professional players. In terms of the stage, the light and the costume, the whole play was prepared very well. Two cross-gender performers did a really good job. The actor who played Dame Seraphina Scrubbit-Cleaner was so funny. He was the person who won the most number of applauses and laughing. It was surprising when I heard Alice’s ‘Let it go’ song; it seemed like a professional singer!! The best scene I liked was called, Under the Sea. It’s so beautiful that it let you feel you were in a dream palace with beautiful mermaids and colourful fish. I have to mention our Pearly King – Mr Wright, even though he didn’t play too much, he did so well that it is impossible to distract when he was playing. The interaction between the players and audience was interesting. I had many chances to join in the performance through answering Kitty’s questions, standing up following the Cleaner’s instruction and so on. I can feel that the life in this community is very friendly and happy. After the play finished, our host’s family took us back to our homes.

I’m delighted to have such opportunity that I can view a real British family, experience their regular life and attend an activity which was full of local character. Our hosts closed the distance between local people and me. I feel that the local people are positive, friendly and passionate with the British special humour.  I enjoyed a happy and meaningful night with my local family. Thanks to the Family Link Scheme!

Elsa’s host Trevor Wright said, “We went to the village Pantomime I was in on Saturday.  Elsa brought along a friend, Rebecca, a Chinese student doing a Masters in Speaking Chinese.  They were both delightful.  Explaining a Panto to other cultures is bewildering to them and it makes you realise what an odd tradition it is!  But very British so a good cultural exchange.”

Posted in Guest blog