ACT Theatre Reviews 2021-2022

judge when filming but he made it look effortless. Throughout he looked to be having a ball and made every effort to include prat falls in his comedy. His vocal delivery in song was also strong. Similarly, Simon Sullivan (Nurse Nelly) engaged well with the audience in his live segments. In this particular panto this character didn’t have a lot of screen time but when he did there was good, expressive, slow and deliberate vocal delivery. Normally I like a swift pace in dialogue but this approach worked well. Some of the other character’s dialogue got lost in speedier delivery. We always need a baddie to boo and Gavin Chadwick’s Carabosse worked a treat. The costume and makeup (as with all the characters) was great. He oozed evilness and horrid intent. He worked the audience with menace. If ever anyone needs an evil Miss Hanigan, go no further. Sofia Butterworth was the counterpoint to this. She looked and sounded the part of the good Fairy Stardust. For me, the Prince Valiant character stands on the delivery of a good Dorothy Ward thigh slap and Jem Marshall-Ayre did not disappoint. She worked well opposite Kat Rawling, the Princess Aurora. There was great singing from both of them in a duet and solo songs. Kimberley Ross and Karen Schofield (Spit and Polish) worked hard to convey the slap stick humour that a comedy duo can convey. Paul Wood (King Putupon), Daniel Cope Aimey Saxon (Lord and Lady Chamber pot) all added to the mayhem and fun that is pantomime though these characters would find it easier to build a rapport with a live audience. Some of the song choices really did make one listen. You will be found was delightfully sang by Kat Rawling but was made all the more poignant when Paul Wood contributed a harmonising vocal. Similarly, one of the youth chorus – Oliver delivered a super cameo and song. This was a hybrid, immersive experience of projected film and in person character and everyone must be so pleased that there was a good, finished performance at the end of a very long wait. Though, like me, I bet everyone cannot wait to get front and centre in front of a live audience and have fun both for those in the audience and onstage, after all that is Pantomime!