garrick panto


Lichfield Garrick


There was a warm feeling of anticipation among the audience as they filed into their seats for the Garrick theatre’s annual pantomime.

They were joyously greeted by the familiar strains of Slade belting out their ubiquitous Christmas standard, which really set the mood for the evening, helped along by the front of house staff clapping and waving at the front of the stalls. The whooping and shouting began even before the curtain rose, so, expectations were high for a lively night.

As always, the first character to take to the stage is the Fairy Godmother, delightfully played by Rebecca Keatley, (CBeebies) who sadly hadn’t yet attained her wings and magic wand, but, the Fairy Superior, Paul O’Grady, on video clip, gave her instructions as to how she could win her vital accessories.

The ensemble opened the show in fine style, and throughout, the gorgeous costumes in all of the scenes were truly stunning, particularly those of the Ugly Sisters, James Mitchell and George Akid. (they had about 10 changes, each one growing more outrageous as the story progressed) A brilliant duo who engaged the audience at every opportunity with their corny jokes and brash demeanour. Not a pair to encounter on a dark night, (or any night!)

Becky Lane as Cinderella and Dominic Griffin as Prince Charming were the perfect, romantic, fairy tale couple and shared some lovely harmonious duets as the fated lovers who eventually find happiness, no thanks to those horrid ugly stepsisters!

Herbie Adams, as Dandini, (valet to the Prince,) gave a fun, comedic performance, dancing and singing with great flair, particularly in the hip hop/rap number which had immense responses from the kids. Cool dude #Mr Dandini!

The cash strapped Baron Hardup, father of Cinderella and her ugly siblings was played by George Telfer, his kindly character shining benevolently, given the behaviour of the dysfunctional, dastardly duo of daughters.

Garrick favourite, Sam Rabone, not only plays Buttons, the love lorn admirer of Cinderella, but is also director of this fabulous spectacular. With so many original elements and special effects, he’s pulled off a stupendous show that will appeal to every age group.

It has all of the usual ingredients that we love and expect in panto, including references to local areas, lots of audience participation, and the most spectacular transition at the close of the first act! A particularly topical feature, which had the audience in gales of laughter, was the Strictly sequence and Herbie as Twice Daily would get everyone’s vote as the shows next presenter. Fab-u-lous dahling, It’s a 10 from us all Herbie!

With its inspirational directing, lavish sets, cringeworthy one liners, outstanding music and choreography, this is a panto to please all. The whole cast, including the three alternating teams of children, who perform so confidently, deliver fast paced, wholesome, family entertainment at its very best. It runs until 5th January 2020 so, get your tickets now and it’s a given that . . .You shall go to the ball!

Elizabeth M Smith


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