Sleeping Beauty

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This is a high production full on panto for all the family and if you get the magic spell right there will also be snow falling from the sky!

Sleeping Beauty is the basis of the story in as such a young girl, Luna, grows up to reach her 21st birthday not knowing she is actually a princess and would be queen if only her step-mother, Queen Carabosse, wasn’t claiming the throne for herself and being mean to all the people in the realm… know how it goes…..

There is a storyline there but take it with a pinch of salt as there are meanderings, however this panto isn’t all about sticking to the plot, or the script.

We are introduced to the story by Fairy Fizz (Sasha Latoya), a modern day fairy who raps and rhymes her way through the performance, keeping us updated as the tale progresses. It’s quite a long introduction but it’s cleverly done, with the characters being spotlighted behind the gauze screen – it worked well. Fairy Fizz had a shout out phrase for each time she came on stage and we had to ‘oo oo’ in response. 

Luna (Alexandra Barredo), the Princess was cute, adorable with a beautiful singing voice and almost had the ability to keep a straight face while the quick witted Maris Piper said something off script. The Dame, Maris Piper (Antony Stuart-Hicks) is utterly hilarious, riotous and comical keeping the rest of the cast on their toes as to what she might say or do at any given time.

Son Spud Piper (Dale Superville) also had a shout out phrase and is a complete natural, he has funny bones and was hugely entertaining alongside Maris, they are a double act who could have their own show. They both picked on members of the audience through the night to either embarrassment and entertainment for everyone. It was all in good humour.

Jamie Pruden who played Queen Carabosse was a fantastic panto baddie in her amazing red plastic costume. Prince Istuna (Philip Catchpole) did a commendable job of attempting to be relatively serious while his trousers were down. Matthew Forbes played Polo, the Penguin – yes the penguin.

The whole cast were fantastic, even the ensemble. The performance goes on longer than expected due to the ad-libbing, the comedy moments and the on stage laugher between the cast as it’s clearly as much fun for them as it is for the whole audience. They have an ability to draw the audience into their in-jokes and make us feel part of a unique experience – a version that happened just for us. You know it’s going to be different for each performance depending on who’s in the crowd and how loud the audience is prepared to be.

There were amazing costumes and set designs, it almost looked like a TV studio for a CBEEBIES show – bright colours, twinkly lights, plenty going on for the eyes.

There was singing, dancing, booing, shouting, clapping – everything. There was something for all age groups in this panto. There are also plenty of surprises throughout the show and it is highly entertaining. Well done Mercury – no wonder it has broken the Mercury Theatre’s box office pantomime records – so make sure you book your tickets.

The panto is on until 14th January – click here

Photo Credit Pamela Raith


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