Writer: J M Barry
Adapters: Alan McHugh & Jonathan Kiley
Director: David Fleeshman
It’s Chico time at the Crewe Lyceum this year as Qdos Pantomimes produce Peter Pan. The magical adventure is brought to life epically, with a large cast, a well crafted traditional panto script and heaps of musical numbers
Alan McHugh & David Fleeshman’s script has heart, development and a constant momentum which ensures you keep watching to see what happens next. McHugh and Fleeshman’s re-jigging of the plot also keeps audiences guessing and allows Cannon, Ball and Chico to have a more central place in the production.
A number of cast members have a background in comedy and so it’s a smart move and unsurprisingly, the panto full of laughts. There’s a little bit of double entendre and swash buckets full of family fun.
Cannon and Ball head up the bill and following a number of recent pantomimes at Crewe, it’s clear the local audiences adore their old school stagemanship. Their experience at reading an audience shines through as they work the audience and play off their reactions. These aren’t just your traditional panto jesters either, they have some lovely scenes that are crucial to the plot and are rather heartwarming, such as singing the Greatest Love of all while children surround them desperate to put their trust in Peter Pan.
What makes this panto is that while it uses star casting well, the entire super talented company work their socks off to pull off a tremendous evening. Taking to the sky as Peter Pan is Joshua Wyatt and with his youthful looks, caricature movement and elegant flying he makes a charming and buoyant child that never grows up. Danielle Lockwood as Tinkerbell puts on a stellar performance as she skates around the raked stage of the Lyceum and has a fantastic voice to match.
No panto would be without a baddie and Stefan Pejic’s Captain Hoo is aptly rude but equally, a bit childish which makes him a character you can boo, hiss and laugh at rather than be terrified by him.
From the stage filling choreography by Thomas Spratt to the lighting and sound design by Carl Knapper and non stop audience participation. This Peter Pan panto is an outstanding flying success.
*A complimentary ticket was given in exchange for this review. This value for money rating is based on the ticket price value of £25 + £2 Booking Fee. For more info on this value for money rating please visit here: Introducing a new kind of rating