Salisbury Playhouse, Salisbury – until 8th January 2023
Reviewed by Alexandra Browning
Panto is finally back!!! Oh yes, it is!
Salisbury Playhouse provides a warm panto welcome back after a long three years the Playhouse is back with full festive merriment.
The show starts with a modern and exciting twist on the classic childlike tale. Fairy Showbiz flies onto the stage, pulls out all the stops and sets the scene for the show ahead, introducing us lovingly to the theatre and telling us about her goddaughter Cinderella. We are then introduced to Cinderella, Jasmine Triadi, a strong empowering inventor, whom loves her sisters and step-mother. Cinders is completely modernized with her mean step sisters Hashtag, Lucy Aiston and Viral, Fergie Fraser and their influencer ways. We are finally introduced to the quirky and unforgettable panto Dame, Lady Stella Hardup, Daniel Goode. Lady H has a fantastic costume and always has a marvelous up do to go with the frock, we are quickly introduced to Lady Hardup and her onstage chant, “Who needs a fella” “Its Lady Stella”. Like a true pantomime Dame, Lady H has a great mix of jokes for the younger, and the older audience. The small unusual family are the focus of the pantomime for the first half, with their newly created “sister school” the step sisters have their wicked way with Cinderella and turn her into the house maid we know and love her to be.
After our introduction to Cinderella and her unconventional family we are whisked away to a magical palace like surrounding to meet Prince, George Olney and Deldini, Alex Crandon, who share a very lively friendship. Deldini or Del, is an easy-going cockney lad who likes to make jokes similar to Del Boy himself. You quickly find yourself waiting in anticipation of his next joke!
As we follow the cast through the plot of the pantomime you find yourself constantly wanting to hear what happens next. The show follows the same outlines we have grown to love, with some unlikely modern elements, such as Sails-Baked-Beans and more! The first act ends with a magical transformation of Cinderella into a beautiful princess and the audience is blown away to a fantastic song from Triadi, who is an incredibly talented singer.
The second half of the Panto picks straight up from where we left off with lots of action, lots of singing and lots of Audience participation. The band are the main focus for the audience sing-along and Tacos are the only thing you’ll be thinking of for dinner! We then follow Cinderella in her magical journey to attending the ball.
Overall the show is a very modern twist on a wonderfully classical fairy tale. I would recommend this pantomime to anyone who wants to quickly get into the festive fairy tale Christmas mood. The standout performer of the show is Cinderella who is an incredible talented actress with a wonderfully strong voice