Modern entertainment, even during the festive period, has a habit of neglecting the under age ten’s and as a result contemporary pantomime seems to be making its way more and more into the musical theatre genre; however, Wolverhampton’s traditional offering is perfectly developed to entertain this slightly neglected demographic.
Throughout the performance all the hallmarks of panto as it used to be are exploited, such as getting the kids up on stage, announcing large parties and birthdays and having a good old sing song - elements that seem to have faded in favour of large special effects in recent years.
It has to be said that the spectacle that is provided from the larger competitive venues presenting panto’s this year is somewhat missing with some more basic wooden scenery and attractive, yet not particularly detailed costumes. As, especially older, kids come to expect more from live performance due to the spectacular effects offered to them through today’s vast multimedia platforms then they may be left a little disappointed.
Yet the 3D effects used in the production are impressive and encourage squeals of delight from the younger audience members that this production has so obviously been geared towards.
Ventriloquist Paul Zerdin makes a star turn in the leading role, taking his captive young spectators through the show with witty one liner’s and proving that he is a true professional in his craft. Pantomime veteran Christopher Biggins is, as you would expect, as bubbly and as camp as ever.
Though this is not the largest or grandest panto out there, the production satisfies a niche for quality traditional entertainment for young children with relish.