Date 19th February 2023
Society Theatre4All
Venue Gladstone Village Hall
Type of Production Pantomime
Director Liz Sharpe
Musical Director Nikki Ruscoe
Choreographer Sarah Ann Aston
Producer Liz Sharpe
Written By Ben Crocker


Author: Joanne Rymer




What a delightful afternoon we had at the Gladstone Village Hall, you can’t go wrong with a community panto which is less a show and more an experience. The audience is welcomed to the show by the Fairy Godmother Yvonne Ross, who looked wonderful. She introduced us to Charlotte, Erin and Isla ‘The Fairy Brigade’ who were just adorable, their contribution was a delight. Well done, girls.

Panto would be nothing without a Dame and, of course Cinderella gives us two. The ugly sisters played with great aplomb by Eric Rogers & Steve Finch (Cheryl Hardup) & Craig Manning (Beryl Hardup.) Supposed to be identical twins, you really couldn’t tell them apart in looks or behaviour!!  Both stayed just the right side of “over the top”, despite the fun they had with the slapstick comedy routines a great pairing. Fine performances. There is always a panto animal, in this case the Lovely Bumble-B (Rhia Taylor) a racehorse purchased by the Baron.

A small but talented band, directed by Nikki Ruscoe was perfect for the show, never overwhelming the performers. Loved the choice of songs, from Cheryl/Beryl ‘Were forever blowing Bubbles’ (causing trouble) Cinderella ‘Hero’, Baron Hardup+ Cinderella ‘Brown Eyed Girl’, Button + Cinderella ‘Rocklin all over the World’. Snitch + Snatch ‘Money. Money. Money.’ Fairy Godmother ‘Wish upon a Star’. Last but not least I have to mention ‘Time Warp’ great fun.

Cinderella is one of our most popular pantomimes, a lovely romantic story, loveable characters a Royal Wedding great music what more could we want.  Jennifer Rebecca-Tyler gave a warm performance as the unhappy put upon Cinderella, with a cruel stepmother.  Her first meeting with Prince Charming (Julie Withe) who posing as his friend Dandini (Tanya Hook) was a lovely scene. The ball scene was very cleverly done with the space you had, lovely scene for Cinderella and Prince Charming.

Kathy Dally brought us a perfect Buttons, energetic and entertaining, great camaraderie with the audience, lovely scenes with Bumble-B. Buttons leading of the Community Song was an inspiration bringing the audience into the show, great stuff. Great job, Kathy. 

Baron Hardup (Allison Brown) and Lady Devillia Hardup (Liz Sharp) were well cast, the audience responding well to the wicked step-mother’s every appearance with loud Boo’s. Great fun. The inclusion of The Brokers, Snitch (Ryan Williams) & Snatch (Bernie Donaghue) was hilarious.

Theatre4All gave us a good script from Ben Crocker containing all the right ingredients for a traditional panto, good direction from Liz Sharpe and a talented and enthusiastic cast all added up to a truly enjoyable production. What you do with what is a very restricted space is nothing short of miraculous.

 Congratulations on your first panto, it was received with great enthusiasm by a full house.

Thank you for inviting me I enjoyed  rg afternoon very much and, yes, I hope to see you all next year.

Joanne Rymer


District 4