As a child, we religiously went to the pantomime every year so I was a bit bamboozled as I couldn’t recall the story of Dick Whittington so when I heard it was the pantomime at the Theatre Severn in Shrewsbury I was very excited to be asked to go along on press night and refresh the old brain.
Having been to the Theatre Severn pantomimes twice before including Peter Pan last year, I knew we would be in for a treat as the fabulously hilarious Brad Fitt and now legendary Eric Smith were back again. Fitt as Dolly is quite a sight to behold and just when you think he can’t quite top the previous year, he absolutely smashes it. This year with a record number of scene changes, the costumes are as outlandish and fabulous as ever; I won’t spoil it but there is one swimwear number that will make you howl with laughter and your eyes and mind won’t ever be the same again!
Aside from the brilliant Dolly, notable mentions must go to Vikki Stone as the silver Dr Marten wearing ‘Fairy Bowbells’ who provides a wonderful fairy narrator with her wonderful edgy cockney accent she adds another comical element to this already hilarious production. Ben Thornton as Captain Crabstick too puts in a sterling comedy performance; the sweet scene and particularly the boat had us all crying in hysterics u in the balcony.
Overall, it’s by far the best pantomime we have seen to date. It has all the elements and more that you would expect for the festive season. The cast genuinely are all brilliant, as often I find the lead actors can seem a tad wooden alongside the comedy roles, but Josh James as Dick was game for a laugh especially when a member of the audience suggested the cat (which according to the listings should be named Tommy) be called Maureen which he happily played along with throughout.
Charlie was absolutely made up when at the end he was given a shout out by Dolly for his impending birthday (thanks to a little pre-show tweeting) making it such a memorable family night for us all. Charlie had to take in his programmes and has been telling all his class at school about how much he loved it.
The production runs until 10th January 2016 and tickets are available via the Theatre Severn website. It comes with our whole hearted stamp of approval! They have already announced they will be putting on Cinderella next year so I will have two twin girls that will be super keen to join us.
Disclosure – we were given two complimentary tickets for the show (we paid for the other) All views and words are my own