Cinderella review at Hull New Theatre – ‘a charming, traditional panto’
Resplendent in an array of eye-wateringly bright costumes, including a traffic light and zebra crossing print combo, David Dale’s Claudia delivers one of best gags of the night. Pondering the clothing options for an evening out, the gruffly-voiced dame is wondering about her “Brexit dress” – “Everyone wants me out of it, but when I am, they’re not so sure”.
Qdos Entertainment’s Cinderella hits a sweet balance between topical jokes, some dependable groaners, and a nice blend of variety, with a selection of impressive magical tricks – including a “vanishing” woman in a box routine – from the conjurer and comedian Martyn James, as Buttons.
There’s pleasure, too, in Bernie Clifton’s take on Baron Hardup. Alongside the expected physical comedy – including a long-running struggle with a giant, and noisily deflating, inflatable, there’s also a surprise, for me at least, in the power of his singing voice, as demonstrated with a rendition of Love Changes Everything.
There’s a lightness of touch to David McNeill’s production. It’s nimble and swiftly moving. Anita Dobson channels something of Cruella de Vil with her black dress and barbed comments – “being in Hull is like a fairytale, Grimm” – and something of the music hall in her winks to the audience.
With some melodic original numbers, including one entitled By the Humber, and some well-choreographed classics, not least Dobson’s spirited take on Queen’s Don’t Stop Me Now, it’s a charming, traditional panto, with some spooky 3D effects, including a walk-through a haunted wood, throwing in some scream-worthy moments for the kids.
We need your help…
When you subscribe to The Stage, you’re investing in our journalism. And our journalism is invested in supporting theatre and the performing arts.
The Stage is a family business, operated by the same family since we were founded in 1880. We do not receive government funding. We are not owned by a large corporation. Our editorial is not dictated by ticket sales.
We are fully independent, but this means we rely on revenue from readers to survive.
Help us continue to report on great work across the UK, champion new talent and keep up our investigative journalism that holds the powerful to account. Your subscription helps ensure our journalism can continue.