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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.

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

Anita Dobson and Bernie Clifton star in a rollicking panto with more than a touch of music hall

Production Information

Hull New Theatre
December 6, 2018
December 30, 2018
Press night
December 11, 2018
Alan McHugh 
David McNeill
Musical director
Paul Frankish
Tim Oliver
Paul Phillips
Cast includes
Anita Dobson, Bernie Clifton, Neil McDermott, Martyn James and Jocasta Almgill
Qdos Entertainment
Running time
2hrs 30mins