Pirates are back in town but what should be a funny, lively adventure of ghostly pirates, sibling rivalry and caravan holidays is currently misfiring on quite a few cylinders.
The hero of the story is nine-year-old Will who recounts an unexpectedly adventurous holiday spent at his parent’s cramped caravan with his three brothers. The eldest is always playing tricks on him and trying to scare him with blood-curdling ghost tales such as the one about Captain Crow who 300 years ago lured ships onto the rocks until he was killed by a cabin boy. Now he and his ghostly crew haunt the rocks seeking revenge on the cabin boy - or any nine-year-old they happen to stumble across...
The cast of five play all the parts and the script is cleverly written to facilitate this and it does keep the audience in suspense. But despite this and the help of superbly atmospheric set, lighting and sound effects the production limps along when it should romp.
Alasdair Hankinson captures the essence of Will but misses opportunities to engage the audience. His two younger brothers are ably and engagingly played by two women who show their versatility by taking on a number of other key roles: Cath Whitefield is splendid as both Mum and the dance hall hostess whilst Itxaso Moreno makes a suitably crazed pirate.
Ashley Gerlach as Marty and Miles Yekinni as the father and Captain Crow have the potential to deliver vocally and physically bigger performances which might help to lift the energy levels.
The theatre recommends The Legend of Captain Crow's Teeth for children aged seven and over but it is perhaps more suitable for the over-nines as the darker elements overshadow the comedy which is a pity as it has the potential to be a really fun show that captures and engages older juniors and younger secondary age kids.
- Dave Jordan