A show with the ‘wow’ factor. In these days of economic stringency when no amount of glitter can cover over the cracks in the Christmas show budget, this is a production of lavish proportions - lavish with a capital £!
Kirsty Malone, Simon Coulthard, Grant Neal and Soophia Foroughi in White Christmas at the Festival Theatre, Pitlochry Photo: Douglas McBride
Enormous sets that glide on and off with commendable efficiency, an array of costumes (designer Adrian Rees), an exciting ten-piece band (MD Hilary Brooks) and a cast of 20, many with a list of West End credentials - it all comes together under the direction of John Durnin, his 21st production as Pitlochry’s artistic director and arguably his finest yet.
Choreography by Chris Stuart-Wilson is outstanding (particularly enjoyed the finger tap dance) and the Blue Skies rehearsal scene sends everyone off for an interval drink full of good humour.
Grant Neal and Simon Coulthard as the GIs-turned song and dancers Bob and Phil, and Martine McMenemy and Eleanor Brown, as the Haynes sisters, positively revel in the Berlin music and their footwork is none too shabby either. But not a weak link with excellent cameos by Kirsty Malone and Soophia Foroughi as the spurned dancers and Charlie Tighe as the neurotic and very camp stage manager.
A packed theatre, a standing ovation and broad smiles everywhere. A White Christmas to dream about.