Day 14: Jack and The Beanstalk – Heroes and Villains

I wanted to include a variation of a “book” being performed, as I feel bringing the story to life can really encourage reading. Christmas is a great time for families, and what better way to spend time as a family at Christmas than to go and watch your local Panto. Once again The Roses Theatre delivered an outstanding performance with Jack and the Beanstalk. I believe that this was due to a strong mix of being such an important part of the community and a very talented cast.

I happened to attend on a very important night as the winner of the bean competition, 3 year old Louis Wilson (4m 2cm) came to watch the show and have his photo taken with one of the cast (I believe he decided on the cow).

Jack and the Beanstalk review

There indeed was a great atmosphere from the moment I stepped foot into the lobby – which had beans everywhere (from knitted ones, made by the community, to ones grown by the children, an arch over the stairs, and red and green balloons (very Christmassy). Once inside the theatre the seats were packed out! And there was such a buzz. The set looked amazing and we could tell we were in for a treat.

Jack and the Beanstalk review

It was lovely to see the return of Millie Booth playing Princess Demelza. I felt she was very talented in last years Aladdin – but through her performance of Jack and the Beanstalk it was very clear how much she has grown as a performer over the last year. Her voice was like an angel and how she effortlessly danced around the stage in all manner of shoes with impressive heels.

Jack and the Beanstalk review

 The relationship between her and Elizabeth Christensen, who plays Jack, was like chemistry, and it looked as if they had known each other for years.

I cannot believe that I did not recognise Noel White at the read through. He played Dame Trott in Jack and the Beanstalk but was last years Widow Twanky in Aladdin. However, as soon as he took to the stage in his full attire the happy memories came flooding back. He really made the show for me last year and did not disappoint again this year.

Jack and the Beanstalk review

 Simple Simon was always set to steal people’s hearts. With his shyness and simplicity and just needing a bit of help (from the audience) to be brave, as he has a heart of gold.

Jack and the Beanstalk review

Charlie Haskins really brought to him to life and had us all shouting, “Be brave Simon, be brave!”

I was also told of how he signed an 8 year old boy’s programme – telling him to be brave, and it really made the performance even more special for that child.

Jack and the Beanstalk review

Together Noel and Charlie (Dame Trott and Simple Simon) made a great comedy duo.

Jack and the Beanstalk review

With jokes, misunderstandings,falling down and even pie in the face!

Jack and the Beanstalk review

Listen out in this scene for a reference to the current news about Nigella Lawson and coke.

Jack and the Beanstalk review

Of course every story needs someone to tell it – and we thank Kali Peacock as Edena the Eco Fairy. She was so confident, energetic and entertaining and a real pleasure to watch. For those of you who gain a soft spot for Simon will love Edena even more by the end of the Panto too.

Jack and the Beanstalk review

Kali also played Flunkit and was the voice of the Giant too – not forgetting that as Flunkit she also became a tree!

Jack and the Beanstalk review

Which brings me to the next comedy duo and that is of Flunkit and King Bertram, played by Joe Hall. He is so serious it is funny.

Jack and the Beanstalk review

As I have previously mentioned the Chorus is made up of selected youngsters aged between 8-16 years old.

Due to working laws the children are not allowed to work every performance (and let’s be honest even every other performance is a lot of work for their small bodies), so are split into two groups.

This was the turn of the Stalks:

Alice Davies, Anna Freeman, Jemima Kelly, Rebecca Waller, Alicia Whitlock, Rachel Wollaston, Abigail Tyrrell and Bethany Tyrell.

Jack and the Beanstalk review

They did an amazing job and I felt very proud for them and their parents – I am sure they will go far in the future, and I wish them all the best. I am looking forward to seeing the Beans on my return on the 23rd December – where Father Christmas is also set to make an appearance.
Jack and the Beanstalk review

Of course let us not forget the amazing props, costumes, make up, scenery, lighting and music – the whole thing was amazing.

Which brings me onto the villains of the piece. If I had to give just one reason to go and see Jack and the Beanstalk at The Roses Theatre this year it would most definitely be because of the Giant. There’s no photos so as not to spoil the surprise but he is really worth going to see. The Roses Theatre have done an amazing job with him.

Jack and the Beanstalk review

And of course a panto wouldn’t be a panto without some booing and hissing. So we welcome Philip Andrew as the Giant’s sidekick Slimeball.

Who did a great job of making us love to hate him.

Jack and the Beanstalk review

 

Performances run until January 4th 2014 – please see The Roses Theatre for more details.

With this in mind I have paired up the Jack and the Beanstalk panto with a Superhero for our next day of the Christmas TRH Book Advent.

Superhero TRH Craft

My son’s current favourite superhero is Batman. You can read about how we made him here

I was provided with a free ticket to watch Jack and the Beanstalk at The Roses Theatre in order to write an honest review.