Free summer entertainment at Scarborough Open Air Theatre

Free afternoon entertainment will be staged at Scarborough’s Open Air Theatre throughout the summer holidays, it has been announced.

In what is being billed as family-orientated music and variety, NAP Music Productions will present Sunshine Showtime with James Aconley and Friends – an afternoon show of music, song and dance on Mondays and Thursdays from July 23 until August 30; with all-round entertainer Gary T Davies taking the limelight on Tuesdays and Wednesdays during the same period with his show, Family Funtime With Gary T, which will also feature the Hatton School of Performing Arts. All the shows will begin at 2pm and no admission will be charged.

Scarborough Council Strategic Director, David Archer, said: “This is another example of this council’s commitment to entertainment at the Open Air Theatre and gives residents and visitors an extra reason to enjoy Scarborough.

“We have said for some time that we wanted to see the Open Air Theatre used more in the summer months and I’m delighted we have been able to bring James and Gary on board. “This is also a great opportunity for local singers and dancers to get involved and enjoy some big-stage experience which could lead to other opportunities for them in the future.”

Gary, who will perform a routine of character-based comedy, song and impressions, learned his trade in holiday centres. He worked his way up to become a highly respected performer and entertainment manager for Haven Holidays before returning to the cabaret world.

His characterisations of Elvis Presley, Shrek, Bob the Builder, The Blues Brothers, Ali G, Lady Gone GaGa, Jedward and Freddie Mercury have been dubbed “a side splitting laughter experience which few acts can achieve and is sure to have any audience talking about The Gary T Davies Experience long after the final curtain”.

He said: “It will be a buzz to perform at Scarborough’s Open Air Theatre. It’s a venue with a proud history of variety and summer shows and I’m delighted to be involved.”

James, who has sung in theatres across the region and has his own cabaret show which he performs in hotels and restaurants, will be singing – along with his cast – songs from Glee, High School Musical, Hannah Montana, Dreamboats and Petticoats, Michael Buble, Take That, One Direction and Olly Murs, with numbers from British pop legends and children’s music also included. The show will feature a selection from community and youth groups and will be backed up by dancers from the Scarborough Dance Centre.

James says he is particularly looking forward to the relaxed format, where visitors can “just walk into the open air theatre at any time” to watch the shows. “I’m particularly excited about the community element of the show and the opportunity that’s available to local groups to perform in a venue of this size,” he added. “We will be using local performers and we are also planning a segment in the middle of the show where the very best talent from local schools and dance groups will be able to perform. Local schools who would like to put forward their best singers and dancers for consideration can email me at”