Reviewed by Sandra McGhee
Last night (9 December 2017) my daughter and I had the pleasure of reviewing Sleeping Beauty at the Grove Theatre in Dunstable, Bedfordshire. We were very lucky as this was press night, so as soon as we walked into the foyer to collect our tickets we felt an immediate sense of excitement and huge amounts of positive energy. Upon taking our seats in a box we could see around the theatre a real mixture of ages from very little toddlers to the more mature.
Look no further if you want a guaranteed family celebration over the Christmas period, the panto was absolutely fabulous, certainty to catch the panto bug that’s for sure. Every single year the pantos at the Grove just get better and better when previously I think nothing can be improved. This panto I must say is the best so far, especially for the little ones as there is a fantastic added surprise with Helga the Dragon making an appearance, your little ones will be blown away and in total awe.
This was Paul Hendy and Emily Wood from Evolution Productions, first production at the Grove. What a fantastic job they did bringing such joy to Dunstable. The cast were very cleverly put together. The main top-quality cast included:
John Partridge (probably more recognised for his famous role of Christian in EastEnders) who played Prince Charming so well (and his singing was beautiful). John’s first visit to the Grove also.
Sally Lindsay (some will recognise as former barmaid in Coronation Street) played Carabosse, she was brilliant and so convincing.
Rebecca Keatley (again some will recognise as a presenter on CBeebies) played Fairy Moonbeam, certainly brought a different twist with her wiggle and famous countdowns.
Will Kenning, played Nurse Nellie and what a marvellous job he did too especially the unexpected bathroom scene with Jangles, a typical Laurel and Hardy bit of laughter.
Ian Jones, Jangles, again great acting.
Jemma Carlisle, Sleeping Beauty beautiful young lady who was perfect in every way and was perfect match to Prince Charming.
Ieuan Rhys, King Cuthbert, superb. In fact, all of the cast were amazing not forgetting the villagers, and local dancers.
Most will know the traditional fairy tale of Sleeping Beauty. The spell-binding story was illustrated like you couldn’t imagine.
Both acts were full of the usual witty jokes you would expect at a panto, lots of audience participation, lavish sets and famous water guns. Bundles of laughter and wonderful costumes and sets.
Great creative and production team bringing this magical panto together some very original clever scenes (one of my favourite being the newsstand)! Orchestra spot on too.
I’ve already spread the word recommending all go and see. If you haven’t booked up already, this is definitely a must. You will not be disappointed.
A first-class pantomime.
Tickets cost from £15 to £25 (booking fees may apply).
Sleeping Beauty is at the Grove Theatre in Dunstable from 8 December 2017 to 2 January 2018, for more information or to book tickets visit www.grovetheatre.co.uk or call the box office on 01582 602080.
Grove Theatre, Grove Park, Court Drive, Dunstable, LU5 4GP | 01582 602080