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Beauty and the Beast review at Town Hall, Loughborough – ‘original, fresh and funny’

Loughborough Town Hall consistently sets the benchmark for traditional panto in the East Midlands. This is the fifth successive panto from Morgan Brind, writer, director, designer and co-founder of Little Wolf Entertainment, and his shows keep on getting better and better.

While his work revels in all the best-loved things about the form, they’re contemporary too and pertinent to what’s happening in the locality. So the restoration this year of Loughborough’s famous Tower Carillion gives the town’s favourite Dame (James Peake) the chance to do a bit of slapstick dressed as a magnificent Taylor’s bell – one of a succession of lavish costumes that includes a Greek goddess complete with plinth.

Brind’s female characters aren’t seduced by the likes of show-off Gaston (Ryan Hall) and can hold their own with any man, as ably demonstrated by Rosanna Miles as the Enchantress, Rebecca Gilliland as Belle and Ella-Jane Thomas as La Fool.

Adam Pettit makes for a tender Beast and Kristian Cunningham an endearing Idle Jacques. There are lots of wicked Brexit jokes and outrageous puns. The comic timing is immaculate, the dancing exuberant, and the whizz-bang pyrotechnics are a treat. The show’s moral message is strong too: it’s who you are, not what you look like, that matters most.

https://www.thestage.co.uk/pantomime/ [1]

Verdict
Fresh, original and funny pantomime, tailor-made for the town and the times

Production Information

Production
Beauty and the Beast
Venue
Town Hall
City
Loughborough
Starts
November 24, 2018
Ends
January 6, 2019
Authors
Morgan Brind
Director
Morgan Brind
Choreographer
 Danielle Stanley
Set
Morgan Brind
Lighting
Rob Bridges
Sound
Sam Glossop
Stage manager
Kevin Cutts
Cast includes
James Peake, Kristian Cunningham, Rosanna Miles, Rebecca Gilliland, Ella-Jane Thomas
Producer
Little Wolf Entertainment
Running time
2hrs 30mins