Reviews from Paul's pen

Reviews from Paul's pen


Peter Pan

Review by: Paul Towers, 22/12/18
JM Barrie’s Peter Pan  adapted by Will Brenton
An Imagine Theatre production
DeMontfort Hall 15 December to 6 January 2019

“hugely entertaining family fun”

After the runaway success of Imagine Theatre’s Beauty and The Beast last year at DeMontfort Hall they are back with Peter Pan.
This is a pantomime in the very best tradition; a hero, a villain, a dame and a comic.
Back by popular demand are Leicester’s very own Sam Bailey (Shoo) and Martin Ballard (Nanny McSmee). They are joined by Britain’s Got Talent contestant Kev Orkian as Smee, Cat Sandion (well known from Cbeebies) and Coronation Street’s Kevin Kennedy (Curly Watts for those with a long memory!) as Captain Hook at his moustache twirling best.
The juvenile leads are played by Andy Owens as Peter Pan, Kate Eaves as Wendy and Becky Burford as Tinkerbell.
I am sure we all know the story of Peter Pan, the boy who didn’t grow up and enticed Wendy Darling and her brothers to Never Never Land where they joined forces with The Lost Boys and defeated dastardly Captain Hook and his pirates.
All the elements of traditional panto are here in abundance; daring do, sword fights, loads of flying. Inbetween there is all the comedy we expect. The Dame, Martin Ballard, is a past master (mistress?) at getting the audience going in ever more outrageous frocks. Playing her son, Kev Orkian is an accomplished stand up comedian with acres of experience entertaining children of all ages with boundless energy and is a great comedy partner for Sam Bailey’s Shoo, the ship’s cook.
Lots of scene changes entail acres of backcloths and scenic elements, all of which are rolled on and off DeMontfort Hall’s ample stage into the cramped wings. On top of this there is the obligatory flying which Andy Owens has obviously mastered with lots of aerial gymnastics. And as with every great pantomime there are loads of songs, both current and old, shoe-horned in for all ages to join in with. S Club 7 and Steps are old favourites but this year’s go-to show is The Greatest Showman.
This is hugely entertaining family fun as shown by the fact that the youngest audience members were still in nappies, as were some of the oldest!
Peter Pan runs at DeMontfort Hall until 6 January. Best ticket availability are after Christmas
First published on Western Gazette

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