Date 22nd November 2018
Society South Manchester AOS
Venue Z-Arts Centre
Type of Production Pantomime
Director Kevin Proctor
Musical Director Jack Hawkins
Choreographer Kevin proctor


Author: Liz hume-Dawson

South Manchester AOS’s production of the pantomime Cinderella was an absolute treat to watch, energetic and colourful it hit all the right notes. I always like it when it has something for everyone, delightful for the kids and the innuendos for the adults, typically taking the audience a few beats to get then the giggling, gasps and often loud guffaws start rippling through. This was such a night and believe me it was non-stop. Oh yes it was!

Starting with Kevin Proctor who directed, choreographed and was one half of the duo of writers with Tom Whalley. His vision from conception to finished product with little delicate touches gave the professional pantomimes a run for their money, following the traditional story and adding touches of current affairs, locations and songs that would fit the bill for everyone.  Anyone who can get a cast to pull off a RuPaul Mega mix gets my vote! I also loved the Madonna tribute with cast resplendent in Masquerade dress with fans at the ready and put to good use in time with the music. Costumes were colourful throughout and the Ugly Sisters had some cracking outfits. The Finale looked spectacular with its colour theme. The Ugly Sisters’ styled wigs were just amazing and almost had a cartoon look, made out of foam they were sculpted to form works of art on their heads, designed and made by Kevin Proctor.

With all this production and backing around, the cast had a lot to live up to and they took on the challenge with ease. The ensemble also worked well to support the cast.

Vikki Bullar’s Fairy Godmother sets the scene at the beginning, although in traditional costume she is a very modern fairy and spoke in rhyme to the audience. She had a quirky fun side and lovely singing voice.

Rebekah Davies Playing Baroness Hardup the scheming sultry mother looked like she relished every moment, apart from when saying the word Cinderella which made her actually gag. She had the look of a 50s Hollywood diva: fantastic entrances and dropping the mic gag at the end of her song – inspired!. Her trusty side kick Muffin played by Jack Cooling, who had a different piece of cat related music every time he entered, I feel could have been used even more, perhaps seen lurking around listening to conversations to reinforce references to his spying. Kallum Edwards playing Buttons appeared nervous on opening but soon got into his stride and was then confident in his narrative delivery. Kallum worked well with Baron Hardup played by Kenny Logue. I actually feel this could have been milked much more about “The Actor” not knowing his lines or being late for entrances. Genius! The Line” I met my wife in Tesco – they didn’t tell me I was getting a bag for life” - will stick with me - still laughing!

Most cast certainly made the most of their entrance and Prince Charming played by Andrew Ryder and Tom Farnworth playing Dandini were no exception. They had great chemistry on stage. Tom coming across as a Julian Clarey/Joe Lycett-esque personality  - lots of withering throw away lines that hit the mark.

Cinderella played by Rosie Plummer sang beautifully and got to wear some gorgeous shoes.

Great double act the Ugly Sisters played by Tom Kuzniar as the camp Bella complementing Jack Waterman’s butch Stella (Artois). They were costumed perfectly and their roles were well defined by interacting with the audience and giving them shade - true Drag Race style!

A thoroughly enjoyable evening and I cannot wait until next year. Thank you for making my guest and I feel so welcome.

Liz Hume-Dawson