Monday, 14 December 2015

Review 4; Bristol Post

Review: Jack and the Beanstalk at Theatre Royal Bath

Posted: December 13, 2015

Martin Dodd and Theatre Royal, Bath 
presents Jack and the Beanstalk

4/5 by Gerry Parker

BATH Theatre Royal have in recent years built up a tradition of good old fashioned family pantomimes based on a nucleus of experienced Panto players who connect with the audience from the word go.

This year local favourite Jon Monie as Simple Simon and Nick Wilton, in the role of Dame Trott fulfilled those tasks in a skilful manner that made their job look deceptively easy.
The audience knew exactly what to expect from this pair, corny gags, well used Panto routines, and the community song, from which they drew every last ounce of response from an audience that loved every minute of heir work.

The big names brought in to boost public interest often prove to be disappointing because of their inability to deal with a live audience, and lack of commitment to the show, but not on this occasion.
Nigel Havers as Fleshcreep in Jack and The Beanstalk at the Theatre Royal Bath
Nigel Havers displaying all the experience gained in playing leading roles for Royal National and Royal Shakespeare companys, and starring roles in big block buster TV series and films was a splendid Fleshcreep, the giant's villainous assistant. In the best traditions of pantomime this was a character we really did love to hate.
You had the impression that Mr Havers was enjoying the freedom of being allowed to ham it up, but did so with complete control, this was a top quality actor who knew exactly how far to go in search of a laugh without descending into caricature.

Katy Ashworth from CBeebies was equally at home in pantoland producing a loveable Fairy who proved to be a fine advisory for Fleshcreep.
As usual those involved in the romantic content of the story had to be content with the crumbs left over by the laughtermakers, but this did not prevent Sarah Louise Day, Princess Jill, who received admirable support from David Alcock as her father the king, and David Barrett in the role of the Giant killing Jack from making pleasing vocal and dramatic contributions to proceedings.
Brightly staged and colourfully costumed there was plenty to please the eye as well as the ear in this production

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