29th January 2015
The Lyric Theatre
Type of Production
Author: Les Smith
~~With an abundance of Boos, Hisses and He’s behind you we knew this was going to be a traditional panto and we were not wrong.
Starting with Fairy Pantomime played to perfection by Samantha Smedley who rhymed her way through her lines which were interrupted very frequently by other” Fairies” calling her on her phone for help, I am pleased to say she was always very helpful to her colleagues.
Of course in each panto where there is a good fairy you will find a nasty one and this was in the guise of Witch Atlanta played by Karen Osman who was the very best of evil and encouraged the audience young and old to Boo and Hiss her at every entrance.
In the majority of pantos we have come to expect the principal boy to be played by a girl as we expect the dame to be played by a man in a dress. Well here tradition was broken in the fact that our principal boy, Robinson Crusoe was played by Jonny White and I have to say he played it very well, of course it did help that he was tall, slim, extremely handsome and of course had a fine singing voice. He reminded me very much of a young Jess Conrad who I believe was the first guy to play principal boy in a panto. Robinson’s love interest was Polly Cockles, the daughter of the Captain, played extremely well by Laura Wilson, again it helped that she was very pretty and could both sing and dance.
In every panto we have the funny guy or the “Simple Simon”; well here we had Billy Crusoe the brother of Robinson played expertly as always by Ashley Booker. Ashley had the audience in the palm of his hand whenever he came on stage and he was able to give them what they wanted, to have a good laugh! Ashley was ably assisted in the comedy by Johnny Green as Dame Crusoe, the mother of both Robinson and Billy and well as Cory Froggatt as Bosun Herbert, both these were able to bring the laughs on whenever they entered the stage.
There were many little touches in this panto which made it stand out from the rest, one was the inclusion of The Animation Song which is not included in many pantos and when done correctly as in this case works extremely well. Another exceptional addition was the “Synchronised Swimming” which included around six members of the principal line up, this was hysterical and brought the house down.
Other notable performances came from Steve Ball as Captain Cockles, Nathan Walker as The Cannibal King, Alan Walker as Captain Pinkerton and Scott Walker as the Gorilla.
As usual we were treated to the dancing from the Julie Turner Stage Academy as well as a good number of youngsters from The Dinnington Student Academy.
Well done to all involved in Robinson Crusoe.