Last week we went to The Roses Theatre to see Aladdin, written and directed by Ben Crocker.
This production really captured the essence of everything that is Panto. There was the villain to boo at Abanazar (or-have-a-banana) played by Jeffrey Harmer. My three year old really enjoyed Booing!
Lots of comedy with PC Ping Pong (played by Jonathan Mulquin)
And of course, following tradition, plenty of pain for him!
No Panto would be a Panto without the traditional role reversal – of course the main role of Aladdin – played by Madeleine Leslay.
And I loved my 3 year old’s reaction to Widow Twanky, played by the amazing Noel White, as he said, “Mum, that man is funny!”
There was the traditional “he’s behind you,” with Wishee Washee (Geraint Rhys Edwards) trying to train Tyson the panda (Olayinka Giwa); and bad jokes, singing, and dancing.
I spoke to a little girl called Scarlet, during the interval, and she said that her favourite part was the Princess Jasmine – played by Millie Booth (who also played the Genie of The Ring).
Well done to Musical Director Andy Allpass and Steve Crickett on Percussion for the great sounds, including up-to-date modern music such as Gangman Style, as well as more traditional love songs; and fab sound effects – such as when Aladdin goes into the cave.
Of course there was plenty of audience participation, with the involvement of children being called out of the audience to go up on stage as young as 5, and they were given a little goody bag to take away too.
With lots of audience singing and clapping their hands.
It was my husband’s Nan’s birthday and so we thought we’d treat her. And what a treat it was! They even wished her Happy Birthday for us and got the audience to sing the Birthday song for her.
The choreography was amazing – and I was especially impressed by the younger dancers. The Chorus was made up of two groups (we saw the Rubies but there was another group the Sapphires so that the girls didn’t have to do every performance). The Roses held auditions back in October for 8-16 year olds to form the chorus and give youngest a help getting their first step on their career ladder.
The make up, costumes (some very sparkly numbers) and scenery were amazing – the changes were so quick and efficient. The effects were brilliant – and my favourite was the flying carpet.
Programmes were available (£3), as were light up toys, to entertain the children, sweets and drinks – but the only extra entertaining the children needed were in the interval!
This was a fantastic production and well worth a visit – if you’ve not booked your tickets yet you can do so here and if you have – enjoy :O)