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After Christmas 2020 there are high hopes for Christmas 2021 to be a revival of all things festive – decadent decorations, sparkling lights, and, of course, hilarious pantomime.
This year the Everyman Theatre in Cheltenham is pleased to be swinging open its doors and welcoming everyone in to see its latest pantomime production of Jack and the Beanstalk.
We were delighted to be asked to review this year’s pantomime and with the story of Jack and the Beanstalk offering a heroic main character, a glorious giant and a larger than life plant we knew we would be in for a treat!
On arrival at the theatre we were greeted by a group of carol singers who set the tone for a festive, fun filled evening. The atmosphere inside the auditorium was buzzing in anticipation. Even before the show had started, the stage conveyed a milkshake factory with lights in the tubes flickering and seemingly filling strawberry and vanilla frosted drink containers.
Starring many familiar faces from past Everyman productions, the camaraderie between the company is evident from the moment the lights go down and the curtain lifts.
The giant is voiced by Laurence Llewellyn Bowen who happened to be sitting behind us in the audience! He offers plenty of changing rooms era jokes and pokes fun at the interior design choices in the Cotswolds.
Kane Verrall excels in his role as the glittering ‘spirit of the unicorn’, a protagonist who narrates the tale and provides a soothing antidote to the villain ‘Fleshcreep’.
Played by Samuel Holmes, writer and co-director of this production, Fleshcreep is scary enough to make the children in the audience sink down into their seats but witty enough to make adults laugh uncontrollably.
Tweedy is the true star of the show, clowning about and making jokes much to the delight of the audience. His antics had us in stitches from the start!
Playing the role of ‘Tweedy Trott’, Jack’s brother, Tweedy offers plenty of slapstick routines and hilarious moments throughout the show. He provides a masterclass in getting the audience involved, encouraging us all to join in with key phrases such as ‘It’s behind you’ and ‘Oh no, it isn’t!’.
Of course, no pantomime is complete without a resident Dame and Dame Trott is no exception!
Played expertly by Kevin Brewis, Dame Trott is flamboyantly dressed, sarcastic, quick witted and offers plenty of double entendre jokes which whizz over the children’s heads but keep the adults amused throughout the performance.
Jack, played by Darius James and Princess Susan, played by Gabriela Gregorian together star as the loved up couple who accidentally sell Marsha the cow in exchange for magic beans!
Plenty of well known pop songs interspersed throughout the story offer opportunities for lively dance numbers. The little girls in our row were up and dancing along to the beat!
We particularly enjoyed the ‘wings’ song and dance sequence which featured Princess Susan in a dazzling airplane display above the audience sitting in the stalls – you’ll have to book tickets to see it for yourself!
Another highlight of the evening was the revised version of ‘The 12 days of Christmas’ performed by Tweedy, Jack and Princess Susan – this section was rip-roaringly funny as they raced to perform it in double quick time and stagehand ‘Alice’ got the biggest laughs of the night.
We would happily recommend Jack and the Beanstalk at The Everyman Theatre which offers a fun-filled performance for all the family.
Tickets for Jack and the Beanstalk are selling fast and we’re sure that the 2022 pantomime of Dick Whittington will be just as popular.
Thank you very much to The Everyman for inviting us to experience the show.
Have you been to see a pantomime this year? Are you hoping to book tickets? Comment below, say hello and let me know!
As always, thank you so much for reading!
Love, Thrifty Mumma X
To find out more about the Everyman Theatre or to book tickets to the 2021 pantomime Jack and the Beanstalk please visit: http://www.everymantheatre.org.uk
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