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What's On



Published Monday 10 December 2012 at 13:55 by Lesley Bates

Don Maclean must be one of the country’s top dames and certainly one of the most practised, with 39 pantos under his belt, many of them in falsies and frocks.

It takes that much experience - this is his fourth Widow Twankey - to make it look so effortless.

He’s brazen, brash and garish, not to mention coarse, but steers clear of offensive - although the bouncing boob routine came perilously close had it not produced one of the funniest “it’s behind you” moments I can recall.

By contrast, X Factor runner-up and Dancing on Ice champ Ray Quinn is a much newer kid on the block, but he possesses an easy cocky charm that makes an instant connection with a Saturday matinee audience in full cry.

Together, they make a formidable team, fronting what is only Lighthouse’s third foray into producing its own pantomime.

Tom Bright’s adaptation is more a series of set pieces paying lip service to the storyline, and some of the costumes look a little tired, but there’s plenty of energy from the ensemble and a super flying carpet sequence to add a wow factor.

Tim Flavin is obviously relishing the role of Abanazar, although his dancing ability is kept under wraps.

Fine-voiced support comes from Alex Handy-Ferrie’s Princess Jasmine, with Sarah-Jane Dunsome an attractive Genie of the Ring, and a host of well-drilled local moppets swelling the chorus line.

Production information

Lighthouse, Poole, December 7-January 6

Tom Bright
Cast includes:
Ray Quinn, Don Maclean, Tim Flavin, Dan Looney, Sarah-Jane Dunsome, Neil Smye, Alex Handy-Ferrie, Matthew McLoughlin, Evan James
Running time:
2hrs 30mins

Production information displayed was believed correct at time of review. Information may change over the run of the show.

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Run sheet

King's Head, Islington London
January 24-February 15 2014