South Shields couple set to take comedy show to Edinburgh Fringe Festival

A scene from The Big Time.
A scene from The Big Time.

A devoted daughter who created a theatre production company in honour of her parents is getting set to take one of its shows to the world-famous Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

Stacey Walton’s dad Tony lost his battle with cancer in 2016, and her mum Maureen died 15 months later, also of cancer.

Stacey's parents Tony and Maureen.

Stacey's parents Tony and Maureen.

Devastated by their deaths, the 35-year-old, from South Shields, channelled her grief into creating a theatre production company - Walton-Gunn Productions - with her fiance Wayne Miller, 39.

Now, the couple are getting set to take a comedy they have created, Big Time, to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in August.

The play features two hapless criminals who are keen to impress a criminal mastermind by following orders to kidnap a girl - however, they end up kidnapping the wrong one.

Stacy says: “Nursing both parents through cancer and then losing them both within the space of 15 months was, without doubt, the hardest and most traumatic thing I’ve been through.

We’ve got an incredible opportunity to demonstrate just how much talent there is in the North East

Stacey Walton

“Being able to do something that honours them and doing it through theatre, something which they loved, means something positive is coming out of all of this.”

The Big Time will be performed at CRoyale on George Street at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival 1st-25th August. There will also be preview shows in South Shields on July 27 and 28 at The Marine Pub, South Shields.

Wayne said: “It’s the perfect opportunity to showcase North East comedy and writing to an international audience. We have a top cast that will no doubt bring the funny!”

To help, the couple on their way to Edinburgh, they are holding a fundraising night at the Armstrong Hall in Stanhope Road, South Shields.

Stacey Walton with mum Maureen.

Stacey Walton with mum Maureen.

It will feature comedian Steffen Peddie and Bob Stott. They will perform alongside singing talent Eilish Stout-Cairns and The A-Chuck Brothers.

The show will take place on Sunday, July 22, at 7.30pm.

Stacy added: “It’s not easy starting off, and we’ve got an incredible opportunity to demonstrate just how much talent there is in the North East.

“So, we’re hoping to raise a little bit of money to get there. If anyone can’t make it to the fundraiser but would like to help, we have a JustGiving page for any donations.”

Walton-Gunn Productions debut show was “Peter Plank’s Magical Mystical Egg”, an Easter Pantomime performed at the Westovians Theatre in South Shields in April 2018.

The show starred panto favourites Steven Sullivan and Craig Richardson and received rave reviews.

Walton-Gunn Productions plan to bring back Peter Plank for a Halloween adventure and also produce the new comedy The Will of Joe Spade.

Tickets for all events and JustGiving info visit www.thebigtimecomedy.com