Shrek The Musical

Date 21st September 2021
Society CODY Musical Theatre Company
Venue Prince's Hall, Aldershot
Type of Production Musical
Director Paul GIbson
Musical Director Paul Tickner
Choreographer April Timpson
Assistant Director Sophie Fryer

Report

Author: Jane Turner

Shrek The Musical - A welcome return by CODY after a long gap, with another superb show.  The months of lockdown must have been frustrating in the extreme and it was clear that everyone was delighted to be back, treading the boards or joining the production team.  Another terrific show.

Devin Mōller, Shrek, with a gentle Scottish accent, held the show together, remaining calm through all the adversity thrown his way, displaying a quiet humour.  Paris Terrett as the Donkey was inexhaustible, bounding around and chatting non-stop but in the end turning into a true friend to Shrek and facilitating his eventual happy ending with the princess.   Victoria Szebesta played the part of Princess Fiona with assurance, moving between excitement, frustration, despair and finally happiness.  As for Dale Barrell as Lord Farquaad, he was outstanding.  To strut about on his knees for the whole show must have been excruciating.  He was endlessly funny and personally I was rather sorry to see him go up in a puff of the dragon’s smoke!

The costumes couldn’t be faulted.  Obviously the main characters – Shrek, Donkey, Farquaad, the Dragon – were easily recognisable from the book and stage play and their costumes were brilliant, supplied by Molly Limpet’s Theatrical Emporium.  The fairytale creatures were very colourful and the rats and soldiers all added to the lively mix.

Every corner of this large stage was used to great effect.  Paul Tickner is to be congratulated for his musical direction both with the cast and his great mix of musicians.  I felt the energetic cast was not well served by the sound amplification which throughout the show seemed to be too loud, making the diction in the songs and speech difficult to hear and understand but they met the challenge and made up for this with their enthusiasm and liveliness.

The set was constantly changing with props appearing and disappearing as if by magic and good use of drapes.  A lot of scene changes and good artwork.  The stage crew are to be congratulated on their flawless operation.

The directorial team delivered a truly fantastic show and Sophie Fryer in particular must have had her work cut out, both as Assistant Director, Props Manager and Front of House Manager – no mean task in itself for such a large venue!  Congratulations to everyone for another triumph.