Seaton Delaval Arts Centre
Until Saturday 10th December 2022
The Seaton Delaval Pantomime Society celebrate 50 years with a charming show that involves the community.
The show benefits, at its core, with a great script from Tom Whalley. Filled with plenty of jokes, it helps ensure that the audience is very much involved. This is very much a panto that they can be a part of rather than one which is done to them.
Laurence Hill appears as Abanazar - the evil magician that wants to control the Genie (Thea Hillman) and the lamp. He appears with a flash of light in an effect which was very effective. Laurence was very much at ease as the one the audience boo at.
In order to get his wishes he needs to locate Aladdin (Lewis Hill) who lives with his mother Widow Twankey (Mick Blewitt) and his brother Wishee Washee (Stu Bennett). Stu was able to show his experience as he interacted regularly with the audience, encouraging them to take part. He was in a natural partnership with Lewis to deliver many of the laughs in the show.
Aladdin is in love with Princess Jasmine (Ellee Jacobson) even though there is a risk of death thanks to decree by the Emperor (Chris Orchard) if he was even to gaze upon her. Ellee was another actor who came across as very natural in her panto role. The princess is frequently accompanied by her handmaid So-Shy (Amber Jessop).
Helping Aladdin to succeed against the will of Abanazer are two lovely magical characters: The Slave of the Ring (Katie Jackson) and the Genie (Thea Hillman). Both work well in helping the plot to move along.
There is an energy in the show and it will soon start cooking on heat later in the run. Even the big shows have the occasional wobble or dropped line on opening night. Getting that first show under their belt will hopefully calm a few nerves, especially amongst the huge (for the size of stage) ensemble of young dancers.
For a small production it is really pleasing to see a live band under musical director Gareth Miller. They were able to add to the vigour of the performance.
Aladdin is a great value community show that has a real heart. It was good to see the audience was enjoying the show as much as the cast did.
Review: Stephen Oliver
Photos: Canny Living Photography
The show runs from Friday 2nd to Saturday 10th December 2022 at the Seaton Delaval Arts Centre with evening performances at 7pm and weekend matinees at 1pm. Tickets are £11.00 full price, £10.00 for children and concessions and a family ticket of 4 for £38.00. Tickets are available at seatondelavalartscentre.com or from the Box Office on 0191 237 5460.