Lime Review - Theatre
Theatre Royal Stratford always a warm and welcoming cocoon during the festive season. Rarely disappoints and Panto is a production it has to be said, Theatre Royal Stratford smashes.
Written Trish Cooke and Robert Hyman (who leads a three-piece band in the pit), and directed by Kerry Michael, the show starts with a sing-a-long ("She'll be coming round the mountain.
That even a surly 13 year old and his friend sang along to, this ensures that immediately everyone is in the panto vibe (“Oh no there not”? “Oh yes they are! Music and songs throughout the show are original reworking of popular songs. Set in the not to fictional StratEastHam, where the rich are robbing from the poor (similar situation to real life London).
The conflict is set up toot-sweet between the deliciously bad Prince John (Michael Bertenshaw), Oliver Wellington (Robin) and Maid Marion played by Nadia Albina who clearly demonstrates the message of gender inequalities that “girls can do anything that boys can do throughout the plot.
This is a very modern adaptation with costumes given a modern day take of caps for Robin’s merry men rather than Robin Hood hats. A tap dancing King Richard (Ashley Campbell) adds extra fun factor. Strong performances from all cast member but it wouldn’t be panto without a pantomime dame and Derek Elroy playing Maid Marion’s nurse is enchanting to watch and you feel yourself mesmerised by his witty songs and modern take on his role, with excellent jokes built into the character.
This is one for the kids and also for the teenagers who love the songs, some of which they can sing along to, a great show if you have a mixture of ages to take along.
This panto has a great set, original modern story line and definitely gives you the feel good Christmas vibe that only a good panto can achieve.
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