11 December 2010 WOS Rating: Reader Reviews: View and add to our user reviews Written, co-directed and starring Berwick Kaler as the dame, in his 32nd pantomime at York Theatre Royal, this ebullient production races along, mixing all the traditional features of pantomime with an imaginative, wide-ranging plot – watch out for aliens, swinging nuns and a giant chicken.
I particularly enjoyed the enthusiastic performances of
Suzy Cooper as Jill and David Leonard as the delightfully detestable baddie, but the whole cast, including local children, carry us along with their boundless enthusiasm, raising the spirits in these dismal times.
Alongside the usual live music, dance routines, slapstick and sing-a-long, the action is brought bang up to date with numerous modern allusions, adlibs and topical jokes. Stronger in the first half, with its rousing, glitter-ball opening, the production loses pace a little in the second, but Kaler is a master of his art, and there is a strong rapport and genuine warmth between him and his ‘bairns and babbies’, as he calls the audience.
This is traditional family entertainment at its best, suitable even for the very young, but be warned: young children will have only a vague grasp of the plot of the original
Jack and the Beanstalk by the end of it!
- Sue Casson
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