REVIEW – Jack and the Beanstalk, King’s Theatre

*****

King’s Theatre

Andy Gray makes a triumphant return to an outstanding production

We do love a bit of pantomime at Edinburgh Spotlight (oh yes we do) and were extremely excited to attend this year’s Jack and the Beanstalk.

Allan Stewart takes on the role of Dame McTrot and Grant Stott is super-baddie Fleshcreep.  Alan Gray makes a welcome return to the Edinburgh stage as Lord Crumble and he’s still ‘no very well’.

Jo Freer returns in an unrecognisable role and the  six-foot beauty that is Moko Akande returns as the fairy, with Andrew Scott-Ramsay playing the hunky Jack McTrot.  Jack and the Beanstalk is director Paul Elliot’s 9th production in Edinburgh.

This review is by a 10 year old mini-Spotlight member who was briefed not to tell about surprises in the show!

Review

I know the story of Jack and the Beanstalk really well but loved this panto version.  I knew a lot of the songs because they’ve featured in Glee and X-Factor so it was good to be able to sing along.  Fleshcreep was a real baddie this year and scared a little boy in the audience.  I loved booing him everytime he came on stage.  The giant also scared me a bit, he was the size of the whole theatre.

My favourite part of the panto was Daisy the cow who was really funny when she was dancing.  Dame McTrot made me laugh lots and I loved when she ‘appeared’ over the audience a couple of times.

I laughed so hard when they (Stewart and Gray) did an impression from Britain’s Got Talent, I thought it was the real people!

The children on stage were really good at dancing and screaming when Fleshcreep had stolen them for the giant.  I thought that the beanstalk going up into the sky was brilliant and was really happy when Jack managed to get to the top of the so he could kill the giant and marry Princess Apricot.

All of the singing and dancing was amazing and I loved all the costumes.  The girls looked amazing in their dresses.

I really loved the happy ending and cheered when Daisy the cow came home.  I loved  the singalong and I had the best night ever!

We say:

This production of Jack and the Beanstalk was nothing short of excellent from start to finish with amazing special effects.  All the usual panto suspects were present – silly jokes, comedy routines, flamboyant costumes and a bit of ad-libbing.  It’s clearly apparent that the whole cast enjoy the performance.

All the songs and music are current, with characters from television being poked fun of at every opportunity.  Moko Akande’s voice is superb as ever and it really is good to have Andy Gray back – it’s like he’s never been away.

Of course the story culminated in a happy ending, it wouldn’t be panto without one.   As usual, the cast ended on their sing-a-long Status Quo encore which had every member of the audience standing up and joining in.

Jack and the Beanstalk is a glorious way to spend 2 hours and is suitable for all ages (including adults).  This year, the stage production and special effects are nothing short of outstanding and we highly recommend you exchange your magic beans for a ticket as quick as you can.

You can read our interview with the lead cast members and director Paul Elliot here.

Jack and the Beanstalk runs at the King’s Theatre until Sunday 23 January 2011.  Tickets can be booked on 0131 529 6000 or online here.

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