Robin Hood and His Merry Men

Date 19th February 2022
Society Gillingham Dramatic Society Productions
Venue Brooke Theatre, Chatham
Type of Production Pantomime
Director Adam Waters
Musical Director Owen McColan
Choreographer Emma Constantine
Written By Mattew Filmore

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Author: Gordon Harris

Now that’s what I call Pantomime!!

I have never in all my time reviewing GDS pantos been so excited about Robin Hood. It’s not performed as much as other popular Pantos. Yes GDS, you have done it again. 

Director Adam Waters and his MD Owen McColgan, and Choreographer Emma Constantine, and also his talented cast gave us a polished afternoon's entertainment and their enthusiastic audience were with them all the way. GDS you gave us the best there is in pantomime. All the “oh no there isn’t” and “he’s behind you”, a mini pun cart and of course that dreaded water pistol. Musically this Robin Hood was solid with big power ballads, and with Owen at the helm with his band (David Jonathan, Rob Ferguson and Alex Coveney) giving a perfect choice of songs and sound. 

Direction by Adam Waters: Adam certainly knows how to do things professionally and gets his cast to perform to a high standard for community theatre. Costumes (Julie Smith and Jo Kember) were colourful and conjured up the Robin Hood period. Lighting was atmospheric. I particularly liked the set, uncluttered with no clumsy set changes; this made the whole panto roll along, like Robins men, merrily. 

As I said earlier the cast were acting and singing their socks off. Great characterisation from all, including Ensemble players. Well choreographed dancers were certainly energetic, they lit up the stage. Robin (Racheal Heard) and Maid Marion (Rhea Baker) obviously gave us the love interest and they were perfect in every way, acting and my God do they have voices!! Mrs Hood (Marianna Allen) worked her audience well as any dame should and Marianna certainly did that. Sheriff of Nottingham (James Stacy), hated by all, and he powered over all on stage as the Sheriff an acting tour de force - perfect James. His two guards, stalwarts of GDS. Bushel (Lee Round) and Britches (Jeni Boyns) - the audience hated them as much as the Sheriff…Perfect pairing. Back up cast such as Aiden Ashton, Aidan Harwood, Joe Warrilow, Josie Stone, Laura Stoneman, Michael Eagle, Tonia Plowman, Aimee Knight, Nicole Baker, Willow-Rose Cheeseman, Izobel Glennon, Erin Lowe, Jessie Ivy Booth, Harry Wildish and the dancers of AACTS. I thoroughly enjoyed my afternoon at the Brooke Theatre and so did your audience. Welcome back after a gap of two years. Your standard of giving us a splendid pantomine…please keep it up.