DISCLOSURE – TICKETS TO SEE THE SHOW WERE GIFTED TO THE REVIEWER AND GUEST FOR THE PURPOSES OF WRITING THE REVIEW
Reviewed by Lynsey
Back at the Festival Theatre again, this year’s panto follows the adventures of Peter Pan as he and his gang team up with Captain Hook and his pirates to try and save the magic of Neverland and help Peter fly again. But like any good storyline once onboard the Jolly Roger there are plot twists and challenges the team must endeavour to overcome. And in true pantomime style there are a lot of shouting, singing and laughing along the way.
Of course, there would be no Edinburgh Panto without the legendary comic duo Allan Stewart and Grant Stott who are joined again this year by our favourite on screen gangster Jordan Young and the king of panto Andy Gray’s daughter Clare Gray.
As with any good panto there is the extravagant villain who everyone loves to hate and as usual this is played brilliantly by Grant Stott. He looked fantastic as Hook and makes a great baddie. And sharing in the silliness of it all was his old pirate friends turned good guys May McSmee played by Allan Stewart in his usual outrageous attire. And the kids favourite – their pal the very daft but very lovable Smee played by Jordan Young. Their slapstick routine had not only the kids in giggles but also the grownups. It’s hard at times to tell the difference between the blunders and the script.
There was a lot of audience participation throughout from the good old booing to shouting and dancing to picking on some members of the audience. All ages were having a great time. There was enough silly stuff for the kids, but it was peppered throughout with adult humour drawing on some jokes based around and on Edinburgh as well as current affairs.
But it wasn’t just all carryon behaviour – Hook’s pirate crew were none other than GBT’s street dancers Flawless who were incredible with their very impressive dance routines. As were the rest of the ensemble and supporting cast. Kieran Lynch and Rebecca Stenhouse who played Peter Pan and Tink were my children’s favourites. The costumes were as flamboyant as you would expect and the stage design magical.
The Festival Theatre is a great venue for the festive family night out. Its modern but still provides that traditional panto atmosphere, with friendly staff, plenty bars and snack stalls. Located in the heart of Edinburgh City Centre it is easily accessible by public transport but also has plenty of parking close by. There is also a wide range of bars and restaurants surrounding it for pre-and post- theatre drinks and food.
My family and I had a great evening shouting and laughing from beginning to end watching the legendary line up get up to their old panto tricks. I would recommend the show to all audiences – young and old, families, couples or friends – there is something for everyone. It certainly got me in the Christmas spirit. I would give a very merry four stars out of five for this Christmas cracker of a panto!
Tickets from £20