Cinderella

5
Wed, 14th Dec 16
The Bristol Hippodrome panto with Torvill and Dean

Cinderella BristolCinderellaWell that was a fun evening!

Apologies to the team but I wasn't expecting such a good time - I love traditions and so wondered how ice dance champions might get shoehorned into a story and there was to be no Andy Ford ... add to that dreadful traffic so I was almost late and a set I recognised from a previous production and I thought it might be a dull old evening.

How wrong I was. Torvill and Dean are no shy retiring stars, they are on from the get go and their appearances never seem out of place - they skate when it can fit the story and deliver their lines with conviction - but it is the twist on Bolero that really had the crowd going ... the applause was long and heartfelt. Genuinely glad to have seen that!

Jarred Christmas as the Kiwi Buttons has a great delivery and held the kids attention while still sneaking in the jokes and references for parents - he really won me over. Tim Hudson and Charles Brunton make a great Ugly Sisters with the most fabulous costumes and Blair Gibson and Rhiannon Chesterman carry off the often thankless "lead" roles (the love interest!) very well - both have strong voices and good stage presence and somehow this Cinderella seemed less victim and more a strong but hard-done-by lady. Anthony Houghton's Baron Hardup is all it needs to be and his direction brings a pace and confidence to the production which gets well supported by the small but enthusiastic chorus - and the equally talented kids. For me, the stand-out performance was by Samuel Holmes as Dandini - really excellent though my traditional side still expects the part to be a girl in tights ... ahh well, I'll put it behind me!

Great music, funny jokes, pace that barely skipped a beat and a committed and confident company .... now there's a formula for a great night out ....

About as good as a family panto gets...


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