Shrek the Musical at the Theatre Royal Plymouth Review

Theatre Royal, Plymouth

28 July to 15 August 2015


Reviewed by Nicola Wilkinson

Last night I had the chance to watch the brilliant show Shrek the Musical at the Theatre Royal in Plymouth. I really wasn’t sure how they were going to adapt such a popular movie into an all singing and dancing musical but they did it fantastically.

The musical is told through song and dance and is based on the first Shrek movie however you do get to see some characters and chapters from later movies.

From the very start Shrek captures your heart telling you his life story. You go on to see how the unlikely hero (and his friend Donkey) are set a task by the very small Lord Farquaad, who wants to marry Princess Fiona so he can rule the kingdom. They have to rescue Princess Fiona who has been living in a tower since she was seven years old, guarded by a fire breathing dragon, so Shrek can get his swamp back which has been taken over by a whole gang of fairytale characters along with a Gingerbread man, which brings the musical to life and makes you really feel part of the show.

The cast of the show were highly impressive and the characters have been very well researched with each and every person on stage playing their part brilliantly, from the way they spoke, walked, danced and even down to facial expressions really made it feel like you were watching the film. My favourite character had to be Lord Farquaad, played by Gerard Carey, who had the whole audience in stitches every time he entered the stage. I don’t want to give too much away about his character but you won’t be disappointed by his performance, prancing around the stage and camping up his lines. Iain Mattley also shines in the title role of Shrek and Bronte Barbe was the feisty Fiona. The loyal and loveable Donkey was played by Idriss Kargbo who acted the perfect blend of annoying and amiable without going over the top. Also a big shout out goes to the children Joanna Sells as young Fiona and Sophia Rochfort as Little Shrek and Grumpy, their performances were very professional and again cast very well and Joanna’s voice was lovely.

Personally one of my favourite scenes were the tap dancing rats, this was very well done and very unexpected.

Shrek the Musical is a definite must see and you won’t leave feeling disappointed, it is definitely a musical comedy for all the family and would be a magical performance for children as they would really feel part of the show.

Plymouth Theatre Royal is set in the town centre, with plenty of parking around the theatre. Buses stop right outside and it’s not too far from the train station. With a recent revamp the theatre feels very modern and is also always clean. Once again the staff gave a warm welcome to every customer.

There are plenty of places to eat close to the theatre but to celebrate Shrek the Musical coming to Plymouth the theatre have created a very special Swamp-themed menu for all the children to enjoy before the show, this includes things like Dragon-Flamed BBQ bites, Shrek Snot & Crisps, Three Little Pigs Pasta, and much more, so why not book a pre-show meal at the theatre’s restaurant to make your visit more unforgettable.

Rating: 5/5 thumbs_up

Tickets cost from £16.70 to £45.70 (Prices include a 70p per ticket booking fee).

Shrek the Musical is at the Theatre Royal in Plymouth until 15 August 2015. For more information or to book tickets click here or call the box office on 01752 267222.

Theatre Royal Plymouth, Royal Parade, Plymouth, PL1 2TR | 01752 267222


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