Romeo and Juliet

Date 17th October 2015
Society Westovian Theatre Society
Venue Pier Pavilion South Shields
Type of Production Play
Director Jim Barton
Musical Director Michael Coulson


Author: Peter Oliver

This was the first time that I had been invited to see the Westovian T S Juniors perform. in their beautiful residency, Pier Pavilion, and what a venue with its iron arch spandrels giving this theatre a touch of Victorian splendour. This was a truly superb performance of this well-known Shakespearian play under the professional direction of Jim Barton. The set was authentic and worked extremely well enabling the action to be seamless and continually moving. The sound and sound effects were very good, and a special mention to David Gibson and Rebecca Robinson for the costumes which looked excellent and in keeping to the period.  I particularly liked the use of ribbon to simulate the swords in the fighting sequences which the actors used very convincingly.

This very talented young cast worked well together with energy and enthusiasm to bring this tragic tale to the audience. There were many fine performances but none more so than in the beautiful relationship between the two leads played by Jack Young as Romeo, and Erin Atack as Juliet.  They had a good rapport, good characterisation and stage presence, and delivered their lines with clarity. Juliet’s parents, Lord and Lady Capulet, were well played by Leon McGuiness and Jessica Henderson, again with very good stage presence and characterisation. Their nephew, Tybalt, was played by Megan Charlton who put everything into this strong part, and was more than well matched by one of the Montagues, Mercutio, with Lynn Davidson again playing a very strong character. Benvolio, Romeo’s cousin, was very well played by Corey Muizelaar, as were Lord and Lady Montague played by Danielle King and Melissa Whale–Spencer. Balthasar, Romeo’s faithful servant, was confidently played by Kai Newton. Good performances were delivered by the servants Molly Lucas, as Abraham, Holly Chinnech, as Peter, and Ellie Pearson as Sampson.  There was a strong performance from Georgina Whale-Spencer as Paris, a kinsman, and Juliet’s suitor as was Reese Wake playing Prince Escalus who throughout the play tried to maintain peace at all cost.  Charlotte Warriner, as Nurse, confidante to Juliet, brought warmth and humour to the role in an excellent performance and good delivery of lines. Last but not least Friar Lawrence, a friend to both Romeo and Juliet, was played by Melissa Whale–Spencer who demonstrated good acting and a solid cameo role.

Overall this was a first class evening’s entertainment delivered by some very talented youngsters who understood what was required of their roles and characters and delivered a first class performance. A superb evening.