Pantomime stalwart and our favourite dog-lover, Paul O'Grady, has just filmed a new festive video for Febreze. We caught up with the presenter for a quick chat about all things festive.
- You're in panto at the Palladium - does that make you feel Christmassy?
It’s hard not to get into the spirit of Christmas when you’re in the panto, plus it's good fun.
- What's the appeal of panto for you? Do you think it's getting more of a star-spangled and less cheesy image than it used to have?
Panto’s all about being over the top, from extravagant costumes to outrageous sets, it wouldn’t be what it is without all that. Panto’s great because you get to dress up, be obnoxious and make people laugh, and best part you won’t get thrown out of anywhere for doing it.
- Did you go to the panto when you were a kid? Does a particular one stand out in your mind?
My favourite has always been Snow White although I had to be taken out of the pictures as a kid once - the Wicked Queen suddenly appearing on a big screen was terrifying for a six-year-old!
- What's your least favourite Christmas smell and the worst Christmas pong in your house?
When the house reeks of cooking smells, wet dogs, assorted perfumes and aftershaves that guests have been given as presents that they couldn’t resist drenching themselves in. Plus the pungent smell of cigar smoke from an elderly relative who wouldn’t dream of smoking but who always likes a cigar at Christmas. The place stinks and the smell of sprouts, not to mention the resulting flatulence caused by this vegetable is my least favourite thing about Christmas. Still, a good blast of Febreze soon clears that up and eliminates all those odours!
- What are you doing for Christmas this year? Cooking, entertaining?
On Christmas day I’ll be cooking the dinner and then I’ll be doing absolutely nothing. My favourite thing about Christmas day is not having to do two shows, so I’ll be making the most of a day off and having a nice long lie in.
- What's in store for you in 2017?
If I told you it wouldn’t be a surprise!
- Do you have any New Year's resolutions?
I’ve given up making new years resolutions but I am looking forward to a long lie in and a bit of a holiday at some point!
- Do you have any great Christmas tips you’d like to share?
Christmas dinner is only a Sunday roast with a few extra trimmings. Prepare your veg well in advance, get your timings right and don’t panic. Remember it’s your Christmas as well and you don’t want to spend all day sweating over a hot stove whilst family and friends relax in the living room. Christmas pud is very heavy, especially after a huge dinner. So knock up an easy trifle instead using supermarket custard, slices of Madeira cake or petite madeline arranged at the bottom of a glass bowl that you’ve soaked in sherry and the juice of the fruit (frozen or canned) you’re going to pour over the top of them. Cover in the custard and whip up a tub of double cream for the topping. Sprinkle with toasted almonds, stick a glace cherry in the middle, put in the fridge and forget about it until needed.
- Read all about why Paul O'Grady is the celebrity we'd most like to have tea with here!
- For more festive cheer, pick up the Christmas issue of Yours magazine, out now