Thursford Christmas Spectacular review – ‘enchanting from beginning to end’
In its 40th year, the Thursford Christmas Spectacular has evolved from a modest Christmas concert into a multi faceted entertainment that more than lives up to its name.
Housed in the unlikely venue of a museum for steam engines and Wurlitzer organs, with a cast of 130 dancers, singers and musicians, and superbly performed live music throughout, the show is unique in its approach and presentation.
The stage, more than 100 feet wide, accommodates a lineup of 40 or so dancers with some impressive routines, including a regiment of toy soldiers, falling over backwards at the end in a hair raising heap. The cast also descend into the auditorium, performing in the aisles, making the audience feel it’s really part of the show and at the same time giving us a closeup of the lavish costumes. Comedian Paul Eastwood pops on and off with some adult humour, and at the other end of the scale there’s a lovely routine for a group of giant teddy bears.
A combination of traditional variety show, classical concert, West End musical and Christmas celebration, the production also gives young professionals a chance in the spotlight, with its policy of performers taking turns with the solo spots. Enchanting from the beginning to the end – which, by the way, is marked with a flight of doves released into the auditorium, care of Norfolk animal trainer David Sherwood. Follow that.
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